Dinner at Dark Table (Blind Dining)

Blind dining is already a hit in London, Paris, New York, L.A. and Montreal. Thanks to our member Patricia for pointing out the opening of Dark Table in Vancouver and now we're going! Without the sense of sight, the senses of touch, taste, hearing and smell are intensified, allowing a new perception of reality.

How it works ?

You’ll be led to your table in the dark dining room by a blind, or visually impaired server who has been trained to ensure your comfort at all times. No light producing technologies are allowed in the dining room, including flashlights, cellphones, or luminous watches.

The blind dining concept originated in Switzerland in the home of a blind man—Jorge Spielmann—who blindfolded his guests in an attempt to show them what eating is like for a blind person.

Spielmann’s guests enjoyed the experience immensely, and claimed that when their sense of sight was removed, taste, smell, hearing and touch were amplified to the extent that the social act of eating took on a whole new meaning. These initial dinners evolved into a restaurant concept.

With an unemployment rate of 70%, the blind face obvious challenges in a society that is preoccupied with visual communication, but in a dark dining environment, the tables are turned—the non-sighted servers guide the sighted.

 

The vegan menu will be as follows:

 

Part of the experience is to not know what some of the meal will be and to experience it without sight. Dark Table will not reveal the appetizer and dessert portion of the meal to us.

 

~Surprise appetizers

 

~Main course of: Cabbage rolls stuffed with couscous, fennel, squash, and spices with orange gastrique

 

~Surprise dessert


Cost is $47/ diner, which includes tax and tip.

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  • Zelda

    Very emotional and humbling experience. No matter how I tried to stop straining to see, couldn't find the off switch, nor could I let go and simply close my eyes. Shoulders constantly hunched in hyper vigilance of the unknown. After first hour I noticed how more vividly I began to process words into pictures, there was mention of a fish head and I saw it more clearly than in daylight. The salad was a playful blend of taste and texture, after 3 failed attempts with fork I kept holding it but using other hand. Meal was delish but a bit bland, problem swiftly solved with copious sploosh of Tabasco, dessert was pleasant. Interesting to experience a meal without seeing how much was actually served. How much do I overeat because 'it looks so good'. Experienced exhaustion and a bit of vertigo while departing, also the urge to cry. Grateful to our server Lazar for his expertise at keeping us as comfortable as possible. Would like to return.

    December 4, 2012

    • Marianne

      It occurred to me that for sighted people there is no "off switch". We could all see squiggles of light and could even see the "black" of the darkness... I agree that our eyes are often bigger than our stomachs. I don't believe the serving sizes were overly generous, yet I felt sated and content.

      December 4, 2012

  • Alivia

    Had a great time at Dark Table with everyone! Looking forward to round two. :)

    December 3, 2012

  • Kim

    It was such a cool experience, everyone should try it once!

    December 3, 2012

  • Marianne

    I found that my posture changed considerably - holding my head higher and turning my face up for what reason I don't know, or slouching with head down. My hearing became acute and at times found it loud around me. My sense of smell was increased as well....smelled my table mates' wine as I approached the table after a bathroom break. This really surprised me! BTW, there was another fruit in the salad, too and our table guessed apple, pear or mango slices... Any ideas? Very delicious salad for sure!

    December 3, 2012

  • Marianne

    My other senses were on high alert and I felt quite overwhelmed and emotionally drained by the end of the night. This is not a bad thing - just shows how much we rely on our sight. Definitely a valuable experience and will spread the word. Food was great but found it a bit slow between courses. Next time I won't go quite so hungry. Wish I'd known about the "bring your own bottle" allowance. Could have used a glass of wine! (and concur - eating with my hands was just easier, less messy and more efficient! Great evening all 'round!

    December 3, 2012

  • Jay

    Starter: The Kale, strawberry, berries salad with balsamic, maple and some type of citrus syrup. Change to the advertised main of cabbage rolls: pleasantly surprised with an asparagus, spinach risotto, a tasty portobello mushroom, assorted roasted veggies and alfalfa sprouts. Chocolate cake and strawberry sorbet to end. Really enjoyed all of the food, eating with my hands (the server who is blind uses hands the most often to eat) and the entire experience, sitting in darkness, listening to people, using the mind and other senses more than I would had their been light.

    December 3, 2012

  • Farryn

    All three courses were DELICIOUS. I loved the blind dining experience and would definitely go again. A great night!

    December 2, 2012

  • Nancy

    I really enjoyed talking with our 100% blind server, learning a bit about his world. The kale salad was great! And I loved every bite of the entrée- which turned out not to be the advertised cabbage roles. Instead we had an asparagus spinach risotto with a portabello mushroom and roasted veggies. Dessert was a strawberry sorbet and chocolate cake.

    1 · December 2, 2012

  • Nancy

    I was thinking of this as something you do just once, but I was genuinely surprised at how much I valued the experience and also how much I enjoyed the food. As the food is continually changing, I would go back.

    December 2, 2012

  • Reena

    A lot of fun and a very unique restaurant.

    December 2, 2012

  • Laurie

    Good company and such a unique dining experience!

    December 2, 2012

  • Zelda

    Can't wait !

    November 15, 2012

    • Nancy

      Hi Zelda, are you planning to sign up for this event?

      1 · November 15, 2012

    • Zelda

      I'm signed up as a guest of Marianne's.

      November 15, 2012

20 went

Your organizer's refund policy for Dinner at Dark Table (Blind Dining)

Refunds offered if:

  • the Meetup is cancelled
  • the Meetup is rescheduled
  • you can cancel at least 1 day(s) before the Meetup

Additional notes: There will be a $2.00 fee for processing all calculations. If you cancel less than 24 hours in advance, there will be no refund, so best to sell your registration to someone else in that case.

Payments you make go to the organizer, not to Meetup. You must make refund requests to the organizer.

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Rafaël

We just grab a coffee and speak French. Some people have been coming every week for months... it creates a kind of warmth to the group.

Rafaël, started French Conversation Group

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