Indulge in Castello Extra Creamy Brie – Indulge yourself and hack your senses by enjoying cheese with different music, different colour plates and serving spoons.
I love cheese, and especially Brie, it’s a staple cheese in our house, and is used for cheese platters, in all manner of recipes, as well as for random (and not so random!) snacking……..of all Brie’s characteristics, the one that I love the most, is its mild creaminess and versatility – it’s a cheese that is just as happy sitting in a school lunch box, as it is sat on an antique plate on a dinner party table. Castello is a trusted cheese brand that I am very familiar with and I simply adore their “Tickler” Extra Mature Cheddar and their Traditional Danish Blue cheese, as well as their newest cheese, Extra Creamy Brie; but, how do you eat your cheese, and what affects the eating pleasure of cheese?
Based on some fascinating results from Creative Food Scientist, Katherine Templar Lewis, who used cutting edge neuroscience to try break down different eating experiences, I set out to see what happens when I indulged in some Castello’s Extra Creamy Brie, using and experiencing different colour plates, different textured spoons and also by listening to a selection of music, and the results are listed below, along with some step-by-step photos of my culinary, neuro-scientific journey.
Firstly, I was sent a Kit, named “Indulge Your Senses” from Castello cheese HQ; the kit comprised a whole Castello Extra Creamy Brie cheese, three plates – one red, one black and one white, two spoons – one white plastic and one heavy bronzed metal, as well as a MP 3 player with loaded music and earphones. My Taste Hack challenge was to enjoy pieces of Castello Extra Creamy Brie cheese, by serving it on the different coloured plates, eating it with the different textured spoons whilst listening to different music……and the results were fascinating, as was the visual impact, as you can see below.
My own “Bespoke” Neuroscientific Results and Reactions:
White Plate: Serving the cheese and eating it from a white plate with a plastic white spoon: This was my least favourite eating and visual experience, and I suspect it is because I associate white plastic spoons with hastily prepared picnics, cheap cafes, budget airline food, using them as “dibbers” in the garden (to plant seedlings) and also, and excuse me here, administrating medicine to my pets! The cheese was undoubtedly good, and very creamy, but on listening to the two tracks in the MP3 player, a flute quartet by Paula Robinson, and a Tchaikovsky String Quartet, it seemed to jar with the plastic spoon experience. The white plate felt very ordinary, again probably because the only white plates we generally use are Pyrex plates that are used for defrosting food, outdoor eating, and again, for my pets! The experience changed on using the bronzed metal spoon, the texture of the spoon worked well with the cube of cheese, and it felt more indulgent, even on the white plate. I also enjoyed the flute quartet music more when using the metal spoon too.
Red Plate: If serving the cheese on the white plate was an ordinary, eating the cheese off the red plate felt naughty and a bit risqué! The colour did show off the creamy whiteness of the cheese, but it felt as if I was about to take off on a Latin Tango across the kitchen floor! Red, rightly or wrongly, is not a colour that I associate when serving cheese, I always serve my cheese on wooden boards, or a selection of antique and vintage blue and white plates and platters, so red seemed very alien, and almost dangerous! The eating experiences with the plastic spoon was no different from before, I just DON’T like eating (or drinking) with plastic. The experience changed considerably on eating the cheese with the bronzed metal spoon, and I enjoyed the experience more when listening to the string quartet by Tchaikovsky, although I suspect the experience could have been heightened some more of I’d eaten the cheese whilst listening to Latin music, Flamenco or a raunchy Tango!
Black Plate: This was my favourite eating and visual experience, which surprised me; the plastic spoon was now discarded, as I just DID not like the eating experience when using it and I felt utterly indulgent on eating the cheese with the metal spoon on the black plate. The plate added a certain elegance and sophistication to the visual and eating experience, and the cheese seemed to be whiter and creamier when served on the black plate. I loved the flute quartet when eating the cheese this time, and the whole experience was luxurious and felt very sybaritic. I also think that the cheese looked best when served on black, maybe that was helped by the beautifully designed black sleeve on the cheese, which was still visible on the table. The white mould that covers the cheese seemed more velvety too…….it was extraordinary how much more expensive the cheese looked on black, like the little black dress of the plate world!
Conclusion: One thing I learned whilst carrying out this neuroscientific taste, sight and listening experience, was just how much taste is affected by relatively simple things such as colour and texture; as a lover of all sorts of music, I have very eclectic taste, I already know that music can add another dimension to food and flavours, and I have used music myself in the past when hosting dinner parties, casual family gatherings and festive buffets……but, I was surprised how much the colour of the serving plates added and detracted from the appearance and taste sensation of the cheese, it was fascinating. It would appear that when serve cheese, I had already been following some basic rules of colour and texture (and music), as I love to see assorted cheeses on wooden boards and wicker, and I have several antique and vintage blue and white platters that I instinctively turn to as well, as I think they add gravitas and elegance to an after dinner cheese board! It is true that every single bite of Castello Extra Creamy Brie was a different taste sensation when using different coloured plates, spoons and when listening to different music too. Why not try this simple experiment yourself? If only to indulge in a bit of closet cheese snacking in the name of science!
Why not try the experiment yourself, and share your results on Castello’s social media to see what others are saying. On Instagram, Facebook and Twitter, head to @CastelloUK
Castello Extra Creamy Brie is available in store at ASDA and Sainsbury’s now for an RRP of £2. Find out more at Castello UK