All over the world, top restaurants are exploring multicultural influences. Fine European establishments are adapting elements of Asian cuisine and rediscovering traditional national dishes to bring diners exciting creations and innovative flavour experiences. One such example is eatDOORI in the centre of Frankfurt, a restaurant that transports diners on a multi-sensory voyage of discovery through Indian cuisine and culture. The atmospheric interior design, developed by the design studio ett la benn, includes highlight products from Villeroy & Boch.
Inspired by a visit to India, restaurant operators Philipp Müller-Trunk, Maximilian Wolf and Kanwal Gill decided to bring India's cuisine and special atmosphere to Germany and introduce a new modern twist. In their eatDOORI restaurant, they serve diners Indian street cooking.
INTERIOR DESIGN AS A HIGH-END PATCHWORK
Ett la benn created eatDoori as a narrow space measuring five by forty metres, divided into different zones and including a window area that can be completely opened onto the pavement. The interior design is a bright high-end patchwork of materials, surfaces and colours inspired by everyday culture in India.
In the entrance area, the floor has been designed to look like a traditional, dark road surface. Acting as reception, a shop and a waiting area for take-away orders, this transition space between the outdoor and indoor worlds is decorated with strings of lights stretched between the walls and simple chairs arranged around small coffee tables. This space then leads onto the bar, dining area and kitchen. With its dark wooden surfaces, cushions and lounge tables decorated with mosaic patterns, the bar creates a visual contrast to the dining area, which is inspired by a typical Oriental street scene and extends over 16 metres in length. One of the long walls in the dining area is adorned with a multitude of window shutters, corrugated metal and wooden boards, while arched panels opposite conjure up images of Oriental window grating. Window shutters arranged diagonally between the tables create a half-booth effect.
A SINK IN THE DINING AREA
The lights are suspended on a geometrical installation of copper pipes leading to an imposing cylindrical-shaped sink in a striking location in the middle of the dining area and playing both a functional and an aesthetic role. It allows diners to wash their hands in running water without having to visit the separate washrooms – according to custom in traditional Indian restaurants. Washing hands before and after eating is not simply good manners here, it is a ritual. The Villeroy & Boch Octagon sink is also a flamboyant design feature, made from the new TitanCeram material which allows the creation of highly precise edges and angles in the ceramic. The delicate facets of the octagon shape on the inside of the sink are reminiscent of polished crystal. This exclusive effect is further emphasised by the pedestal covered by a stone veneer, while a copper band separating the sink from the pedestal creates an optical connection to the pipe installation.
Located downstairs, the restaurant's spacious washrooms are inspired by Indian railway carriages, with grab rails and mirrors resembling rounded windows. There is a shared waiting area for men and women outside the toilets, decorated with an eclectic mix of posters and a chewing gum machine. The doors open onto diametrically opposing scenes, stylishly showcasing the contrast between a sophisticated Orient Express experience and a crowded commuter train. The men's facilities feature announcement loudspeakers, fans and an economy class style, while women are treated to the luxury of stylish veneers, golden taps and fittings and framed mirrors.
The Villeroy & Boch sanitary elements have been chosen with these concepts in mind: angular sinks for the men and oval for the women, both from the Architectura professional range. They create a completely different effect in the contrasting spaces: practical and functional for the men and designer-organic for the women.
"The washrooms represent an intervention within the overall design concept", explained Oliver Bischoff, a partner at ett la benn. "As well as leaving a lasting impression, the very unexpected scene that greets diners visiting the toilets will be a great talking point at the table."
A NEW TAKE ON PLEASURE
At eatDOORI, culinary creations are served on tableware from the Villeroy & Boch Artesano Professionale and Artesano Barista collections, whose understated and yet surprising design language is simply made for eatDOORI's relaxed top cuisine.