Ambarella Fine Foods – designing a ‘customer food experience’

Do you remember as a child your parents telling you when you were at the dining table eating your dinner to not ‘play with your food’?
Were you one of those children that were always frustrating your parents because you wouldn’t eat your greens?
It has become more and more important with our busy and often stressful lifestyles to make sure that we eat good, fresh, healthy and wholesome food. Ambarella Fine Foods at Burleigh, which we were intimately involved in the concept design process is a celebration of healthy food and as you will discover, where playing with your food is in fact encouraged here.

Designing a 'customer food experience'     Designing a 'customer food experience'

A French Provincial Farmers Market Experience

The concept behind Amberella Fine Foods was to recreate the ‘feeling’ of being in a French Provincial farmers market, surrounded by fresh produce – fresh from the farm to your table. The concept of the market square with shops scattered around its periphery ensures that you are able to buy all your food in one place. Beneath the black and charcoal striped awning shops – there is a baker, a fishmonger, a butcher, a delicatessen, a fruit and frozen yoghurt bar, coffee shop and kitchenware. Though it is a themed design, it has been tastefully done with quality finishes ensuring that it should not date too quickly.

Designing a 'customer food experience'     Designing a 'customer food experience'

A Fine Dining Experience – The Ultimate in Pallate-ive Care

Whether you have come to simply purchase good quality food to take away and prepare at home, we have made it easier to enjoy the customer food experience by designing a number of areas where you can sit down and enjoy a fresh coffee or juice, or enjoy a pastry or a frozen yoghurt dessert, or even a delicious gourmet lunch, Ambarella Fresh has it all. There’s even a shaded alfresco area out the front of the store as well as comfortable seating scattered inside the front doors. Whether you are taking a few moments out or enjoying the company of friends, the village atmosphere in this temple to food will ensure that your ‘food experience’ will see you coming back for more.

Designing a 'customer food experience'     Designing a 'customer food experience'

Playing With Your Food

At Ambarella Fine Foods not only can you purchase great food, and enjoy the varied dining opportunities, but you are encouraged to literally ‘play’ with your food. You can order fresh pasta made to order and watch it being made, grind your own coffee, press your own juice, make your own pizza, pick and buy your own herbs, and also attend cooking classes and product demonstrations, such as the ‘make your own’ cheese kit. Selling good quality food is no longer enough – here you can touch and feel and have a more active role in the food making process. It is about interaction and encouraging a sense of fun, learning and appreciation for what we put in our mouths.

Designing a 'customer food experience'     Designing a 'customer food experience'

Ancient Origins of ‘Playing With Your Food’

When we arrived to take these photos it was after New Year’s, and the Client, Anne Beech, apologised profusely for the ‘bare’ displays which were brimming with products before Christmas. Since the opening before Christmas the Client has been doing a brisk trade. The fullness of the display would have added to the great spectacle and experience that an abundance of food can create. Cornucopia, or the horn of plenty, is a symbol of nourishment and abundance, and displays overflowing with produce have become our modern day symbols of this. I discovered a strange connection which is worth noting here. One of the best known explanations for the origin of cornucopia involves the birth and nurturing of Zeus. Infant Zeus was hidden from his devouring father Cronus, in a cave on Mount Ida on the island of Crete. He was cared and protected by a number of guardians including the goat Amalthea, who fed him milk. The suckling future king of the gods had unusual strength, and in playing with his nursemaid accidently broke off her horns, which then had the divine power to provide unending nourishment. [1] So playing with one’s food may actually be a ‘god’, I mean, ‘good’ thing after all.


Designing a 'customer food experience'     Designing a 'customer food experience'

Playing With Your Food & Happiness

In our modern and affluent Australian society, food no longer is simply about survival – we need food to survive – but it has now become an ‘experience’ as proven by the popularity of Master Chef, My Kitchen Rules and other culinary TV series. In essence, these shows teach us to ‘play with food’ to create beautiful as well as tasty masterpieces. Ambarella similarly encourages you to experience fine food – to play with food – to smell it, touch it, handle it, taste it, and develop your appreciation of it. Playing helps children learn and develop, and similarly, as adults, playing with our food helps to develop our appreciation and awareness of food to make us healthy and also happy.  No longer is shopping for food a chore with Amberella Fine Foods, instead it has become a place where you can play with your food and grab a piece of happiness.


[1]  Cornucopia –



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