We're living in a time when it's hard not to know what to expect before you get to a restaurant. Find the website of a café you've heard about recently and you'll just as quickly find its menu, then be hurled onto its Instagram page, where you'll see photos of its most beautifully-positioned dishes posted by the legions who've made the pilgrimage (myself included).
Constant image-sharing means fewer surprises, and it also means that trends in design and in food (some of these, I fully admit to reveling in... whoops!) boil over as fast as hot milk—so fast that it's hard to know where they began in the first place. And that it's hard to remember a time before them.
And so scrolling through Instagram—if you follow the "in-the-know" in New York, L.A., San Francisco, Austin, London, Toronto...—is like looking through soft light-, marble surface-, creamy latte-, and drippy egg-colored glasses. You don't even need to check the account to know that there will be probably be succulents.
Places without this aesthetic (or that only operate in hours with little natural light—dive bars, I'm looking at you!) might not get as much attention, but I like to think that those remain the hidden treasures.
While I'm happily seduced by the tactics listed above (and have reproduced many in my own apartment), even I could use some change: Dear restaurant designers and PR teams, where are your new ideas?
What are you tired of seeing on Instagram? What do you want to see more of? Share your thoughts with us in the comments below!