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"Big Throbbing Night"
February 12, 2009 1:01 PM   Subscribe

Just some food porn. But exceptional food porn. (for the real money shot, click on "All Sizes" above the picture and then "Original" size)
posted by Joe Beese (61 comments total) 6 users marked this as a favorite

 
What qualifies as "food porn" and whats "just pictures of food"?
posted by hal_c_on at 1:06 PM on February 12, 2009 [2 favorites]


You just did this so someone could make a tater joke. It's okay, you can admit it.
posted by middleclasstool at 1:07 PM on February 12, 2009 [2 favorites]


I was about to comment on coffee, racism and how I love grilled food. I wrote tomes and novellas, actually. But I will just politely thank you for sharing photographs of delicious food instead. Gracias!
posted by christhelongtimelurker at 1:08 PM on February 12, 2009 [1 favorite]


hal_c_on: "What qualifies as "food porn" and whats "just pictures of food"?"

Whether to the average person, applying contemporary community standards, the dominant theme of the material taken as a whole appeals to a prurient, lewd, or lustful interest.
posted by Joe Beese at 1:12 PM on February 12, 2009 [16 favorites]


Maybe we can have a website where you send pictures of delicious food to people in starving countries.
posted by oneironaut at 1:12 PM on February 12, 2009 [4 favorites]


A couple of those shots caused me to commit seven out of seven deadly sins.

I love food porn.
posted by padraigin at 1:16 PM on February 12, 2009 [1 favorite]


If it is tasty tasteful, it is really food erotica.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 1:18 PM on February 12, 2009 [4 favorites]


hal_c_on, food porn is pictures or text about food that are intended only to stimulate the appetite and possess no artistic or social value. at least if you tortuously extend justice brennan's opinion in roth v. united states.
posted by barrett caulk at 1:18 PM on February 12, 2009


Porn needs a money shot.
posted by dersins at 1:18 PM on February 12, 2009


apologies, joe beese. i'm just too slow.
posted by barrett caulk at 1:19 PM on February 12, 2009


Porn needs a money shot.

Fyi those enchiladas actually had taters in them. For reals.
posted by dersins at 1:20 PM on February 12, 2009


Perhaps a website with sexually suggestive foods served at low prices by a politically marginal attractive female would corner the market? I'm not joking; I'm considering changing careers just thinking of all the food that I would get to PHWOAR.

Never mind. I'm rational now and no longer care about your menu.
posted by christhelongtimelurker at 1:22 PM on February 12, 2009 [1 favorite]


Porn needs a money shot.

I can supersize that for another 49 cents, sir.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 1:23 PM on February 12, 2009 [3 favorites]


Stewart Potter is hungry.
posted by cortex at 1:24 PM on February 12, 2009


That's Food Erotica, this is Food Porn.
posted by PenDevil at 1:26 PM on February 12, 2009 [1 favorite]


There's no cream sauce in any of those pictures.
posted by ardgedee at 1:26 PM on February 12, 2009


There's no cream sauce in any of those pictures.

Ahem
.
posted by dersins at 1:29 PM on February 12, 2009


Money shot.
posted by wretched_rhapsody at 1:29 PM on February 12, 2009


That's Food Erotica, this is Food Porn.

I think they show that on the Food Network's pay-per-view channel, and only after 12 AM.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 1:30 PM on February 12, 2009 [1 favorite]


wretched_rhapsody: "Money shot."

The larger portraits on the redesigned notes are so life-like. I can imagine Ulysses' face animating as he says to me: "Remember when I used to be so much more valuable?"
posted by Joe Beese at 1:31 PM on February 12, 2009


Potter Stewart, too. Jesus, I'm gonna go get some lunch.
posted by cortex at 1:32 PM on February 12, 2009


No Nigella, licking her fingers, pouting, in a skin tight top, ooohing and aaahing?
posted by Grrlscout at 1:42 PM on February 12, 2009 [4 favorites]


Meatfilter.
posted by resurrexit at 1:44 PM on February 12, 2009 [1 favorite]


This does nothing for me. I was expecting at the very least a banana with a condom on it....
posted by QueerAngel28 at 1:46 PM on February 12, 2009


This is how you Godwin a food-porn thread. Oh god yes.
posted by not_on_display at 1:47 PM on February 12, 2009


MetaFilter : Foodies :: 4chan : Furries
posted by Sys Rq at 1:49 PM on February 12, 2009 [2 favorites]


From the SF Craigslist Rants & Raves section under flash
posted by pianomover at 1:51 PM on February 12, 2009


Is it weird for food to make me question my sexuality?
posted by christhelongtimelurker at 1:55 PM on February 12, 2009 [1 favorite]


Taters
posted by ob at 1:56 PM on February 12, 2009


also, I'm not able to not post on this thread. It is like as if someone composed a post just for me. The only missing ingredients are alcohol and contempt. And they're not actually missing :)
posted by christhelongtimelurker at 1:57 PM on February 12, 2009 [1 favorite]


frappe! frappe! frappe!
posted by orme at 1:58 PM on February 12, 2009 [6 favorites]


No Nigella, licking her fingers, pouting, in a skin tight top, ooohing and aaahing?

Mr. Padraigin prefers Giada, specifically when she chops something in one of those low-cut tank tops of hers. I suspect our entire kitchen renovation will be predicated on having seating opposite the chopping block.
posted by padraigin at 2:02 PM on February 12, 2009 [1 favorite]


I'm not sure I can define food porn, but I know it when I see it.
posted by slogger at 2:08 PM on February 12, 2009 [1 favorite]


The giant phallus of food porn
posted by subaruwrx at 2:08 PM on February 12, 2009


Also, Photograzing is my preferred food porn outlet.


Did I just make a funny? I'm not sure...
posted by slogger at 2:09 PM on February 12, 2009 [1 favorite]


padraigin: "Mr. Padraigin prefers Giada, specifically when she chops something in one of those low-cut tank tops of hers."

I'm more of a Nigella man, myself. But during a recent airing of Giada in Paradise, I did spontaneously exclaim, "She may be in paradise... but I'm in ecstasy."
posted by Joe Beese at 2:09 PM on February 12, 2009


What qualifies as "food porn" and whats "just pictures of food"?

you'd be surprised how infrequently you encounter "just pictures of food." virtually all commercial photographed or filmed food is food porn. i should know, i used to make food porn for a living. it's all about wetting the appetite. jolly fat women saying things like "simply decadent fudge topping" and "one whole stick of butter" with soft focus broll shots of flaky pastries and glistening tenderloins.

as someone who's actually not that into food, it was kind of like being a straight guy working on gay porno. "ooh yeah. I bet those gay guys will just love this beautifully backlit tight focus closeup shot of a guy's cock!" "ooh yeah, I bet those foodies will just love this beautifully backlit tight focus closeup shot of a homemade french bread baguette!" you recognize the tropes, but not the sensation. it mostly bored me to tears, when it didn't nauseate me (as I imagine porno from a different sexual identification market does for some people) but my mom fucking loved it. dear lord, I'd get phone calls. "I think I want to make that Triple decker chocolate truffle layer cake!"

There was one exception, though. One episode of one tv show that I finally understood the draw. The. Barbecue. Special.

I work in New York, so barbecue (while present) is not nearly as ubiquitous as chinese food, or delis. In the part of Chelsea I was in at the time, it was virtually impossible to find really quality barbecue. And this show we were working on. My God. She went to the Memphis in May festival, the all high king of barbecue festivals thrown in Memphis every year during the month of youguessedit. It was like watching an all nude review of the best looking women in the world. It was insane. Most of the people at home saw this tidy hour long special. I watched 16 hours of this stuff. Over and over again.

When I finally found a barbecue place, it was this half thai half american style bistro that served decent pulled pork. I gained 20 pounds working on that show.

So that's what food porn is. Like it is for so many in regular porn, I had to leave the business for my health and mental well being.
posted by shmegegge at 2:14 PM on February 12, 2009 [17 favorites]


it's all about wetting the appetite.

See, that's where you went wrong. You're supposed to be whetting the appetite.
posted by Sys Rq at 2:16 PM on February 12, 2009


god damn typos. there's a few of them in there.
posted by shmegegge at 2:27 PM on February 12, 2009


as I've said before somewhere on the blue, I may be super-gay (I think I say that everywhere on the blue), but I'm really just saving myself for Nigella. And image—still or moving—involving Nigella and food is "food porn," in my books.

Outside of the gastro-erotic aura of Nigella, though, I think food porn is anything that feels obscene in its appeal to your appetites. Much in the same way that (good) porn plays on sexual appetites and causes your body to quicken (get wet and/or hard), food porn provides you with visual cues that ramp up your food-pleasure systems and make your body quicken (get wet, but hopefully in a different place than for regular porn).

In other words, if something seizes you with foodie desire so hard that it hurts, it's probably food porn.
posted by LMGM at 2:45 PM on February 12, 2009 [2 favorites]


Seeing one item plated immaculately is okay; there's no jollies, no rise, no dirty feeling. Even seeing every item that leaves a kitchen plated immaculately isn't really enough to call it a food first base...

Seing every item leave a kitchen plated immaculately, and knowing every single flavor on the plate is well thought out and no shortcuts have been taken... knowing that your chef approves of the food you are putting out... knowing that you are meeting his vision... knowing that your customers are on a month reservation list and tomorrow night they'll have a completely different experience but with the same level of perfection...

well... that's why decent line cooks finish their nights with booze and a smoke... believe me its a satisfying experience...


Some of those dishes weren't food porn unless you count burlesque shows as porn...
posted by Nanukthedog at 2:46 PM on February 12, 2009 [3 favorites]


I once heard porn described as anything that you lose interest in moments after you've... reached your goal, so to speak.

In this case it would be whetting the appetite to the point of going out and eating, I suppose.

In that regard, I think that this can, indeed, safely be called pornography.
posted by quin at 2:52 PM on February 12, 2009 [1 favorite]


You know, I know my food. I know my food porn too, and that is barely sports illustrated.

Nigella however... There's something so wrong about her when she's doing the motherly bossy erotic food porn bit. Makes you feel dirty in ways that...

Hang on... This is just between you and me, right...?
posted by twine42 at 3:36 PM on February 12, 2009


I'm pulling my pork right now!
I just love a good food+porn joke.
posted by not_on_display at 3:54 PM on February 12, 2009


I just love a good food+porn joke.

Okay, let us know when you come up with one OH IIIIIICCCCEEEE SAUTE

posted by cortex at 4:17 PM on February 12, 2009 [2 favorites]


Mr Beese, why is this exceptional food porn?
posted by rakish_yet_centered at 5:27 PM on February 12, 2009


Just the first picture made me decide it was time to eat one of those milk chocolate covered graham crackers I'd been saving up. Oh yeah baby. It tasted so good.

So yeah, I think that was food porn.
posted by A dead Quaker at 6:42 PM on February 12, 2009 [1 favorite]


rakish_yet_centered: "Mr Beese, why is this exceptional food porn?"

Glad you asked...

I refer to the original size photograph of the burger [3.5 MB] at the "Just" link.

You can see millimeter-sized flakes on the bun. You can make out texture in the cross-section of the onions. You can see the distortion of the key light as it's refracted through a bubble of grease on the surface of the beef.

Quality porn - like God - is in the details.

[YMMV, of course.]
posted by Joe Beese at 6:46 PM on February 12, 2009


I'll buy that, I was worried our view of design, lighting, and framing were at odds.
posted by rakish_yet_centered at 6:59 PM on February 12, 2009


A fortuitously-related essay from Policy Review: Is Food The New Sex?
posted by turgid dahlia at 7:10 PM on February 12, 2009


err minus the -
posted by turgid dahlia at 7:13 PM on February 12, 2009


Call me an asshole, but I don't find these particularly good examples of food porn. Where's the ridiculously shallow depth of field? The lighting on most of them seems to be either natural light or (ugh) on-camera flash. Like this shot, the lighting of which makes the steak look green and 4 days old.

Show me some food porn with some goddamn tilt-and-shift DOF and warm, softbox lighting.
posted by alidarbac at 8:34 PM on February 12, 2009


You can see millimeter-sized flakes on the bun. You can make out texture in the cross-section of the onions. You can see the distortion of the key light as it's refracted through a bubble of grease on the surface of the beef.

This is proof positive that it is not porn. Trust me, you do not want to see [insert porn star into another porn star] in that much detail.
posted by Sys Rq at 9:19 PM on February 12, 2009


(especially flakes on buns)
posted by Sys Rq at 9:21 PM on February 12, 2009


Dessert Erotica.... Dragoncake.
posted by Kronos_to_Earth at 9:48 PM on February 12, 2009


hangover omelets are awesome. I got this place by me that serves probably the greatest omelet ever. Coffee sucks ass but you can't be good at everything I guess?
posted by Mastercheddaar at 5:35 AM on February 13, 2009 [1 favorite]


Real food porn has music.
posted by spamguy at 7:55 AM on February 13, 2009


These are okay, but for really hardcore taters, see Tastespotting.
posted by hot soup girl at 11:11 AM on February 13, 2009


^ food porn with music
posted by stagewhisper at 4:10 PM on February 13, 2009


maybe if "exceptional" means "really high-resolution camera". Nothing special about the lighting or composition in these photos.
posted by scose at 4:58 PM on February 13, 2009


Joe Beese, now that you mention the visual detail: Linda Williams, a film scholar that has worked on pornography, described the aesthetics of porn as "the frenzy of the visible" (in Hard Core, 1989/1999). She uses the phrase to describe both porn's desire to be explicit (not just to hint at sex but give you a close-up "meat shot" of flesh plunging into flesh), and its desire for sexual pleasure to be spastic, convulsive, overwhelming—and involuntary. Her theory is that porn excites by playing on the bodily opacity of female sexual pleasure (i.e., there's no boner and no spooge); she thinks that (male) spectators subconsciously worry that women's expressions of sexual pleasure are genuine, and so pornography provides them reassurances through visual close-ups of scenes where the evidence of a woman's pleasure is pulled out of her body through loud, convulsive, frenzied orgasms. That these performances are often faked in the porn industry is an irony not lost on her, mind you.

Anyway, while her theory doesn't explain non-hetero porn or female spectatorship at all, the idea that porn is about trying to visualize a thing that can't be seen but only felt actually helps define what food porn is. It's not so much about dishes of pretty food, but about trying to convey what deliciousness is through a visual medium.
posted by LMGM at 8:10 AM on February 14, 2009 [3 favorites]


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