Hygiene brand Tork has released a report examining the relationship between coloured napkins and the flavour of food, suggesting that colour is a powerful contributor.
Tork partnered with Swedish food stylist and chef, Linda Lundgren, who paired different dishes with different coloured napkins.
She said: "How do you make a strawberry mousse sweeter and richer-tasting? The answer isn't more strawberries and sugar. Instead, try serving the dish with a coral pink napkin. The colour actually increases the perception of sweetness and decreases bitterness, making it perfect for desserts."
The experiments found that aqua blue works best with eggs and Indian food, making dishes seem less salty and brings out yellow and orange as contrast colours. Coral pink decreases bitterness and makes dishes taste sweeter. Reds and pinks pair best with desserts. Mustard yellow works well with greens, like sprouts and salads. It also enhances tart flavours, meaning it corresponds with fish and seafood. Anthracite grey provides a contrast to lighter table settings and food, giving light-coloured foods like Mediterranean cuisine a richer taste.
Julia Wood, senior product manager at Tork added: "Restaurant operators need to provide the very best experience for customers - from food and service to tableware and tidiness, it's all essential if operators want to stay ahead in today's competitive marketplace. To get ahead of the game, operators need to create new, unique experiences for customers. Through our partnership with Linda we want to inspire operators to achieve maximum impact, with minimum cost outlay. Getting creative by simply using complementary napkin colours with the dishes they serve will really make an exquisite plate of food stand out."
Tork has introduced four new colours to its LinStyle® range of premium napkins to complete the range of 16 colours.
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