This is from Secret Breakfast issue #1 on November 2020. I hope you like it.
Here you see a longhouse, a narrow, single-space building you could find for ages in any part of the world. Longhouses were houses, storage facilities, kitchens, communal spaces. Apparently, this kind of construction is having a moment. A few days ago David Zilber, former Noma fermentation guy, recorded a podcast about the future of restaurants.
He said that longhouses could be the venues of the future. Covid-19 is killing hospitality, but even before restaurants were on the edge of an unbearable business model: 4-10% of food brought in a restaurant was wasted before it got to the client. 17% of meals were basically uneaten and 55% of edible leftovers were simply wasted.
«Pandemic», says Zilber, «showed that none starved without restaurants. It’s my belief that restaurants have failed their reason to exist: feed people a delicious meal. Full stop».
His alternative model of a truly sustainable restaurant is that longhouse: «A place that should feed as many people as possible as cheaply as possible, while sourcing its products as close as possible». He imagines public/private partnerships operating in decommissioned public edifices; family fees; limited menu choice on any given night, but a vast choice in days and months; obviously seasonal menus; food provided by the nearest farms. Basically a community place, like the bars and the cantinas we love, but more "social".
He's really fast reading his stuff during the recording, but give that podcast a chance.