Edible gold has always been in, but today it’s everywhere. Gold sheets are being wrapped around sushi, laid on doughnuts, sprinkled over oysters and used as decoration for anything from ice cream to marshmallows. Initially, edible gold leaf was used for extra indulgence at restaurants like Serendipity 3 in their $25,000 sundae; today, edible gold is being utilized even by larger chain restaurants. Coldstone Creamery has recently come out with their new Wonder Woman ice cream flavors and they will sprinkle edible gold leaf over the top. In 2015, Nestle Japan released Kit-Kat bars completely wrapped in gold sold for $16 per bar.
Edible gold leaf actually comes at a higher price than jewelry grade gold at about $145 per gram. The real question is, why are people paying so much for a garnish that has no taste? Gold will always be the height of extravagance, and thus people are willing to pay. Though there has been enormous backlash to the trend, there are more people hopping on the bandwagon and embracing the glamor.
Historically, eating or drinking gold has always been popular across the world. From Egypt to Europe, edible gold was used in many forms of food and drink. In Japan now, you can buy ice cream wrapped in gold for about $9.40 or gold draped dumplings. In Mexico, there are $25,000 tacos that have gold infused in the tortilla shells from the Frida at the Grand Velas Los Cabos. In Melbourne, Australia there is a new take on the “cronut” titled the “dossant” that comes topped with edible gold. In Toronto, a patisserie is baking eclairs decorated with gold.
With so many trends, especially in the world of food, going in and out of popularity, it is a wonder that gold has kept its crown for so long. Gold has reigned over the passing fads for as long as people have known it existed, and I don’t see that changing anytime soon.
Images via Macleans.ca, Foodandwine.com, Foodrepublic.com