If you’re as fed up to the teeth as I am of the Instagram intended meals that solely focus on a dish’s appearance rather than taste, this tantalizing foodie experience will come to you like a breath of fresh air. The highly intriguing Dining in the Dark experience is coming to Austin to awaken your palate with a sense of humor and layers and layers of flavor. You’ll be given a blindfold that will allow you to really lean into your remaining senses of taste, smell and touch. An unparalleled experience, leaving you savoring every morsel.
Smooth and velvety textures, fresh and delightful bites, robust and earthy tastes are waiting for you at the modern Verbena restaurant at the Canopy by Hilton Hotel. Chef Paolo Gama has carefully curated an unforgettable three-course menu prepared only with the freshest ingredients, pairing them with wines that enhance the whole culinary journey.
What to expect at Dining in the Dark?
With the sense of sight eliminated, the theory is that your other senses will heighten to discern textures and tastes, as you sit in a darkened surrounding complimented by candlelight. That’s where you’ll get to test how great of a palate you have to distinguish ingredients. After all, you’re only left with your taste buds and your sense of smell and touch to enjoy a fabulous three-course meal.
Upon arrival, guests will be given blindfolds and then led into the darkened and candlelit environment by the restaurant’s waiters, who will be on hand to make sure you don’t bump into anything, before leaving you to enjoy the heightened experience. There are three delicious menus to choose from: red (that heroes meat), blue (which uses the flavors of the sea), and green (a vegan options that puts vegetables at the forefront).
This experience is all about thinking outside of the box and getting creative, so you can use every tool necessary to make the most of the experience. Whether it’s using the cutlery provided by the restaurant or using your fingers and hands to easily grab the food, there’s no etiquette that needs to be followed. As long as you don’t get too cheeky and try to peek at the food, everything is acceptable!
Where is Dining in the Dark?
Named after the Texas native plant, Verbena is a modern and inviting restaurant and bar situated at the Canopy by Hilton Hotel. Influenced by his Mexican roots and infusing his French training, Executive Chef Paolo Gama creates innovative dishes that tell stories and burst with exciting flavors.
He took the reins of Verbena last year after a more than a decade-long career as a professional chef for Hyatt Regency in Chesapeake Bay, Omni Hotel and Resort, Grupo Vidanta in Puerto Vallarta, the Mexico City British Embassy and the Four Seasons Resort at Punta Mita and Las Colinas in Dallas, Texas. Although eating in the dark might seem a bit daunting, you’ll be in more than capable hands.
Dining in the Dark Reviews
Dining in the Dark has received 5-star reviews from attendees who have experienced the event across the world.
“This experience was incredible! Not being able to see your food, your drink, guessing what it is. Such a great girls night out!”
“Such a blast! I would love to do another!”
“I would do this over and over again! I’m a foodie and I loved each and every moment of this. Incredible cuisine and drinks!”
Coming fall, try something new and savor intriguing flavor combinations in the dark at an amazing Austinite restaurant. Tickets cost $97 per person and you can reserve your table either for 6:00pm or 9:00pm. If you have any food restrictions or allergies, don’t forget to specify them using the form that appears in your purchase confirmation email.