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Dining in the dark: The Twisted Tail serving up blindfolded meals

KIFI

By ASHLEY HARDER

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    PHILADELPHIA (KYW) — The Twisted Tail puts a new perspective on dining. You literally can’t look at the menu! They have partnered with Dining in the Dark to give you an unexpected experience of dining while being blindfolded. Yes, blindfolded. Twisted Tail took a chance on hosting this adventurous endeavor and their shows have been selling out ever since.

The Twisted Tail is situated in Headhouse Square with convenient parking, might I add. They are a two-story, southern-style restaurant encompassing bourbon, American cuisine and blues with their live music. They continue to run business as usual on their main level while hosting Dining in the Dark on their second. I tried to cheat and snag an idea from The Twisted Tail’s menu but the joke’s on me as the Dining in the Dark menu is curated specifically for Dining in the Dark.

Statistically, you eat with your eyes so take away our sight and we’re forced to rely on our other senses to indulge in flavors we haven’t ever tried. Dining in the Dark is an encounter for the open-minded yet still very palatable. Amanda, Associate Producer for Dining in the Dark, encouraged us to truly lean into the experience in order to gain the most out of it.

Upon check-in, you receive a tea light of red (meat), blue (seafood) or green (vegan) signifying your menu choice to your server. Within these three different menus, they are happy to accommodate any allergies necessary. I absolutely love the ambiance of their dining area which includes both communal tables as well as high tops for two. So, with a drink in hand, you’ll take your seat, wait for the announcement to place your blindfolds on, and dig into the fun.

Their host will lead you through your courses suggesting whether it’s easiest to eat with your hands or dare to use your utensils. For instance, my appetizer was full on finger food! I relied on the temperature, texture, smell and sounds of other people’s reactions to finally taste my first bite. However, my second course was clearly a layered dish with several different textures so utensils it was. Dessert was tricky so all was fair in love and war. I used both fingers and utensils by the end!

With my party of one, I really missed sharing this experience with someone as it fully elevates your dining adventure. It is a fantastic communal experience as I mentioned because within their long tables, guests get to sit next to one another and discuss their guesses or share their thoughts. There is so much sound of pure enjoyment. Afterward while speaking with other patrons, I found it fascinating to experiment with the technique of feeding those you are with! I could barely feed myself including dropping food on my white shirt (take my advice, don’t wear white!) so bibs would be a necessity with me!

Overall, my favorite part was hearing the reactions of the diners once the menus were revealed after each course. The reactions were priceless; filled with awe, shock, pride in guessing the correct flavors and so much laughter! I am also very proud of trusting myself enough to step outside of my comfort zone and having a non-traditional experience. I am left with one memorable night and the yearning to bring someone or a group to share this with!

My best advice, everyone chooses a different menu, so you have the chance to taste different flavors and it lends a greater opportunity to join the fun of figuring out the dish. Dining in the Dark is offered once a week, twice a month with two shows per night. So, there’s plenty of opportunity to take advantage of pushing your senses to their limit!

Once you dare to dine in the dark, send me a message so we can compare notes!

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