Food Becomes Art On Martin Kastner’s Dishware


Martin Kastner

Every design has a story and in Martin Kastner‘s world, that story is told through the plating. At the core of Crucial Details–Kastner’s industrial serviceware company–needs are met through a holistic slant, which means relying less on practicality and more on intuition. Kastner, who’s worked for legendary chefs like Grant Achatz and Thomas Keller, builds a tool–in this case a plate or apparatus–to elevate the food experience. And while his designs have a sense of intricacy, it’s really very simple: How do form and function intermingle to arrive at an astounding place of resolution.

Martin Kastner

Martin Kastner

Martin Kastner

Martin Kastner

Martin Kastner

Martin Kastner

How do you get your creative juices flowing?

I ask questions, and I listen.

How did you know this is what you wanted to do for a living?

I’m drawn to interesting problems. I’m intrigued by the transformation of an idea into something tangible and then again into an intangible experience–and also, by the space between material and immaterial.

Tell us your favorite family tradition?

Going into the woods with my dad on Christmas Eve morning to feed the wild animals.

What’s your cocktail/drink of choice?

Rye whiskey infused with ginger and lime, poured over ice and topped off with soda.

What was the last thing you personally cooked in your kitchen? How’d it turn out?

The last thing I cooked completely from scratch was a cold beet soup for our studio lunch. It was delicious.

If you open up my fridge on any given day, chances are you’ll always find…

Homemade yogurt.

Tell us about your all-time favorite book.

If I have to pick just one right now, it would be Immortality by Milan Kundera.

The best piece of advice I ever received was…

Always take time to think before responding to a question…

PHOTOS: Frank Ishman