About Cinema Culinair

One of those great events Rotterdam has to offer

What is Cinema Culinair?

  • Great food and drinks, simultaneously watching a great film. You will taste the same delicious dishes as in the film, perfectly timed at the right moment. That’s Cinema Culinair. Good film + good food + great timing. The clue lies in the timing. For example, when the main character in the Brazilian film Estômago eats a coxinha at 20 minutes and 54 seconds: our guests will do exactly that. A minute earlier or later makes the difference between a good and fan-tas-tic experience! Ultimately, what matters is that you will not only see and hear the film, but also taste and feel it.

What are the ambitions?

Wies Sanders and Harold Smits love film & food. They are eager to introduce the concept of Cinema Culinair to the rest of the Netherlands with a broad array of film+food and film+drinks in restaurants and at special locations. And with the Cinema Culinair cookbook for those who do want to try this at home. The goal is to intensely experience the film and to intensely enjoy the food. It isn’t confined to a small group of people, Cinema Culinair seduces and touches large audiences. And finally there’s a call for filmmakers: “We know enough films with lobster, omelets and pasta, surprise us with unexpected tastes and why are there no vegetarian food films?”
Wies and Harold

Where is the idea coming from?

Our hobby got a bit out of control. The idea of simultaneously watching a film and eating dinner was born in the Graaf Florisstraat in Rotterdam. The neighbors in this street organise collective activities ranging from theatre plays to children’s cooking courses and film screenings. The Rotterdams hot place in town BIRD hosted the concept from 2012 to 2014, offering their customers a Cinema Culinair experience once every six weeks: an arthouse film + 5-course dinner + 2 drinks from the film. Now we organize Cinema Culinair at different locations across the Netherlands.
It started out in 2008 with the film Sideways, a film about a wine tour through California, challenging us to pour out the exact same wines as in the film. As a viewer you experience the tastes the main characters experience, adding an extra dimension to the film. And yes, it worked! Really surprisingly well. From one thing came another, setting our goals higher and higher. In the meantime we have scripted and tested over 30 films for their eating and drinking moments: Tampopo (Japanese), Big Night (Italian), Julie & Julia (French), Abel (Dutch, fish), Sideways (California), Como Agua Para Chocolate (Mexican), La Grande Bouffe (French-Italian) or Estômago (Brazilian).