In a pickle about pickles? Learn about kombucha and kimchi and a whole world more at The House of Ferment

The last few weeks have been a little hectic, to say the very least – I’ve moved from Shoreditch to Dalston (for work not actual house move), thereby increasing my hipster rating significantly (I haven’t yet told them that I’m a massive geek – but they’ll learn), I’ve had the mother of all stomach bugs (too much information? Believe me, I could get much more graphic…. but I won’t) and I’ve been helping with the comms for The House of Ferment which launches tomorrow and which is what I’m going to tell you about, right now. Forgive the indulgence, but think it’ll be of interest to you if you’re London based and foodie. I’ll resume usual service about eating out and cooking in soon (and don’t worry Chris, I’m mentioning you now so you don’t feel like I’ve forgotten this blog is secretly about my obsession with you!)

The Science Gallery London in its own words is: “…a space, focused on 15–25 year olds, where art and science collide. A flagship project for Culture at King’s College London, it will engage over 300,000 visitors per year in cutting edge research in science, the arts and design, bringing together researchers, students, local communities and artists in new and innovative ways to stimulate fresh thinking.

SGL doesn’t have a fixed abobe (yet) but last year ran a successful season entitled Frequencies and has followed this up in 2015 with its current season FED UP: The Future of Food. This season launches this week with a brand new installation at Borough Market entitled The House of Ferment.

DSC_0011 HoF ferment pic 2

The House of Ferment has been developed by the clever folks from Grizedale Arts in collaboration with Science Gallery London. The process of fermentation goes back hundreds of years, but it is making a global comeback and is now the latest craze to excite chefs and foodies across the world. Do you know your kombucha from your nuka, or your kimchi from your borscht? Come along to The House of Ferment to find out more so that when you’re next dining at the latest fancy pants raw food venue, you won’t feel confused by pickles and processes.

The House of Ferment is a multi-functional arts installation incorporating a collection of edible fermented cultures that explores and discusses the processes behind food preservation. Billions of bacteria have been carefully nurtured and developed into six different cultures, each of which produces a distinctive flavour. The cultures have been used to create over 30 peculiar and pleasing products which you’ll be able to try, including sourdough, several kimchi (of Korean origin), nuka (a Japanese bran pickle), local milk cheese and yogurt, nettle ‘champagne’, pickled cucumbers (of Polish origin), sauerkraut, borscht and more unusual products such as kombucha.


In the installation, the fermented foods are combined with functional elements by selected artists, including a bespoke table by the 2013 Turner Prize winner, Laure Prouvost, and an inimitable vessel by the artist Bedwyr Williams. Further functional works by Sarah Staton and Giles Round are augmented by a new range of kitchen equipment created by Grizedale Arts and the village of Coniston.

The installation will act as a hub for a variety of workshops, talks, performances and a pop-up café. Whilst all events are free, you will have to book in for certain tastings and talks through Eventbrite. The link can be found on the main Science Gallery site or you can see the different events and book here:

The House of Ferment launches on 7 July and is open to the public until Saturday 11 July. it will be at 6 Southwark Street, within Borough Market.


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