After two intriguing invite packages (one here; two here!) leading up to the Jasons – Food & Living Blogger Sneak Peek, the evening of the August 9th event has finally come and gone; Jasons – Food & Living officially opened its doors to the hungry public yesterday, August 10th.
Following my video for the event (posted yesterday – check it out, it’s fun!);
today I bring you more details and discoveries with a classic, comic-filled Bakker’s Bites post…
After learning that each blogger had a +1 for the event, I decided to invite my best fellow foodie-in-crime, Sami, to join. Apart from enjoying the event, and tasting the different foods enthusiastically, Sami also helped out filming and taking photos for certain shots with me in them 🙂 Thanks!
Upon arriving at Hysan Place, we were escorted down to Level B2, where the Jasons store is located. It definitely felt like a sneak peek, as the mall itself was undergoing final touch-ups before its grand opening.
After navigating through a series of escalators and construction materials, we reached the fully functional and beautified Jasons – Food & Living, where I got a cool I.D. (above) for the event (including my name and the teapot image I would later use for a ‘blogger game’).
As Sami and I started our tour, I was paying attention to the store design and aesthetic as best I could (the food samples everywhere were a bit distracting, to say the least :)).
Design elements included bright and clean spaces, punctuated by pleasant shapes (e.g. circular ceiling lamps; circular fruit and vegetable display etc.) Everywhere, food is laid out in an attractive and colourful way.
Throughout the store, quirky text designs can be found on walls and official merchandise with such slogans as,
– Feast your eyes on this
– The night is always young
– Go nuts!
and more… This gives a continuity to the store’s image and branding that is fresh, young and will make people smile.
Note: the uniforms have been designed by G.O.D. (Goods of Desire); while Jasons has its own in-house design team
Moving on to the food!
Urban: Cakes, Bread, Salad
Located in the supermarket section of Jasons – Food & Living (the other being the Food Hall), Urban gives Hong Kong shoppers a different bakery experience than any other large international supermarket (e.g. 360, Great Foods, etc…)
Occupying its own store space; and equipped with its own kitchen (preparing fresh salads and sandwiches), Urban is one of several stores-within-a-store at Jasons – Food & Living.
With a New York city loft feel to the shop, browsing the bakery and salad/sandwich bar transports you out of Jasons momentarily.
Imported Luxury Produce
One of the main draws advertised in Jasons’ promotion of the store, is the luxury ingredients and produce imported from all over the world.
At the blogger event, it was possible to try some of these. All of the above were imported from Japan and included Wagyu Beef, “Heart” Cherry Tomatos, and grapes. Delicious!
Jasons Secret Garden
Bridging the Food Hall and Supermarket sections of the store is this impressive interactive kinect wall, known at Jasons as Jasons Secret Garden. According to the on-site PR staff, the wall actually changes to reflect the current season, weather and time of day.
The purpose of the Secret Garden is not just to act as a pretty display; by standing in front of the wall at marked positions, customers can interact with the wall using their hands.
For example, by trapping the butterflies (visible above) using the kinect technology, the reward is a coupon that can be scanned with a smart phone and redeemed at the cashier. (watch the video here http://youtu.be/W12REwvr6w4 to see how the Secret Garden works)
On the left after entering the food hall, is famed Baikohken Ramen Shop. With their helpful and very excited Japanese staff from Hokkaido (they will leave in several weeks after launching their shop), I ate not only one Shoyu Ramen (their signature flavour), but two!!
Why? Wonderfully fragrant and perfectly cooked noodles in a distinct, balanced and incredibly tasty broth wait to be devoured, whilst a slice of tender pork; spring onions and a mushroom punctuate the bowl of ramen with different yet complimentary flavours.
After completing both bowls manically, Serina (one of the store’s representatives from Hokkaido) offered Sami and I one pack each of their dried snack. I was unsure of how it would taste, but held on to it until I got home.
The dry snack (representing their signature Shoyu Ramen flavour) was a deep fried potato-chip base snack that was literally perfect. Sami and I couldn’t stop gushing to each other just how good it was. Once you start, you can’t stop til it’s finished!
I chose pistachio and green tea flavours while Sami tried chocolate and rum/raisin.
Also in the food hall is an ice-cream shop that many shoppers won’t be able to resist. With a myriad of flavours, cute cones and pots to eat the gelato in, XTC Gelato tastes authentic and rich. (Thanks XTC, for my complimentary first stamp on my loyalty card!)
Before wrapping up the evening, each blogger was invited to participate in a game (albeit the easiest game I’ve ever played :P) where all we had to do was simply match our I.D. image with one of the many boxes placed around the food hall.
Each box contained a letter revealing the free goodies we could collect on our way out. It’s actually a bit thrilling to get rewarded for such little effort, hooray!
Now that you’ve reached the end, I’m sure you’ll agree that this blog post speaks for itself, as far as how much I enjoyed the event 🙂 !
Living up to its promise, Jasons – Food & Living is a foodie experience that is keeping up to pace with consumers’ growing demands for quality, personalisation and technology.
How long can you wait until you go to see it, and eat it for yourself?