STORY BY SUSAN MEGGITT
ALL PHOTOGRAPHY UNLESS STATED BY ANN CHARLOTT OMMEDAL / SUPPLIED BY BOMPAS AND PARR
Just when you think everything in the world of food is in its place, along comes something to shake it all up. It seems that certain foods are suddenly keen to make some kind of social statement by elevating themselves from the lower echelons using strategies of celebs the world over. Perhaps inspired by the strategies of NYC hip hop stars, in London, jelly is one of the boring staples successfully leapfrogging social strata by going super bling.
….jelly is one of the boring staples successfully leapfrogging social strata by going super bling
Thanks to architectural foodsmiths, Bompass & Parr, AKA The Jellymongers, jelly is putting it out there, going big, bold, bright and shiny. In my book, it is served by nurses and mums for sore throats and wisdom teeth, swallowed by oldies with loose dentures and I’m even fine with it in the wrestling ring but now that wobbly-slightly-seedy-old jelly is bling.com, it’s also EVERYWHERE that is ANYWHERE.
It’s on the catwalk at London Fashion Week, at Mark Ronson’s 30th birthday party, a fixture at Disney, in NY with Louis Vuitton , and at a Selfridges roof top Jubilee/Olympics party. It’s not just where it is, but also what it is. In the past year, Bompass and Parr, with their team of engineers, graphic artists, cooks and scientists, have created a jelly Buckingham Palace, jelly St Pauls, jelly sea surrounding an actual boat, and a jelly Madrid airport. Serious artistic edible sculpture yes, but in the spirit of a dinkum slightly twisted aristocrat, I’m pleased to say that B&P have also created an orgy of titillating phallic jelly lollipops and strangely life-like boobs. Who knew jelly was so flexible (metaphorically…).
Bompass and Parr aren’t the only ones experimenting with jelly. I also jumped on this jelly pimp train after I found a packet of flavourless Cottees Aeroplane jelly at Harvey Nicks. I made a blue jelly fish for a friend’s babyshower, which no-one touched because it looked exceptionally toxic, and also made gin and tonic jelly shots, which didn’t set for four days, but eventually tasted delicious, as far as I can remember, after the tenth one. I’m not giving up on my own jellybling creations but I do have a deeper admiration for the skill involved in just getting it out of the mould.
Jelly is a social success story that proves that showy bling not only works to elevate the banal but also suggests that food as we know it may have some very exciting surprises up its sleeve. Why should jelly be confined to cellulitey blobs for the toothless decrepit? As Jay Z would say – “it’s Rolex”. It should be out and proud, sculptural, artistic, red carpet, fashion-baby, rock and roll. Having similar wobbly qualities to jelly, I, for one, am personally inspired to wear a few more diamantes around the ‘hood.