“Crescendo!” Traverses the Intersection of Food and Music

Chefs talk about their passions, from smoked prawns and ROSALIA to biryani and Beyonce and beyond

A new podcast from Greg Bresnitz (one of the individuals behind the popular Snacky Tunes podcast), Crescendo! A Sonic Menu Podcast launches today with a mission to explore the intersection of food and music. Each week a guest—usually a chef, but also other culinary minds—takes listeners through a dream seven-course meal, each dish matched with a song. Through these discussions Bresnitz and his guests delve into details and go off on tangents that cooking, food and music enthusiasts will revel in. “The guests share personal stories and insights about their selections,” Bresnitz tells us, “examining the convergence between these savory, sweet and sonic moments as they build toward each episode’s crescendo!”

Outside of art, there are no two greater creative works in the world that can deeply affect people in their day to day lives

Food and music are the perfect pairing; they’re also deeply subjective, creative and personal—tied to identity, class, tradition and history. “Food and music are both creative outputs that pull from the same intangible process. Chefs and musicians are trying to say something and connect with their audience in a way that words alone cannot always capture. Outside of art, there are no two greater creative works in the world that can deeply affect people in their day to day lives,” he says. “It’s super-revealing to show what songs guests pick. They take it just as seriously as the recipes they are sharing. The commonality is how much each track is loved by the chef. It is something special to hear them describe why a song is so incredible and means so much to them. Throughout the tapings, I have fallen in love with so many tunes that were new to me just because they were so deeply important to my guests.”

Season one guests include Andy and Breezy Valdez (HomeState, Los Angeles) Dennis Ngo (Đi Ăn Đi, Brooklyn), Pooja Dhingra (Le15, Mumbai), Prince Lobo (Addis, New Orleans), Najat Kaanache (Nur, Fez) and others. But Bresnitz is already poised to tape season two, and has a few dream guests on his list—from Michelle Zauner to Jessie Ware, Nancy Silverton and Guy Fieri.

As for what Bresnitz hopes listeners gain from the series, he says, “Music is this incredible layer to the culinary world that tends to hide in plain sight… Many diners do not notice it unless it’s a bad experience. When done correctly, music adds levels to the dining experience that takes food to extraordinary places. My goal is to show the hidden connection between music and food to peel back the curtain a bit for listeners. What is great is that chefs get to talk about a topic they deeply love and listeners can hear the guests in a new light, being able to get in their heads about how they use music for inspiration. I hope this drives listeners to understand that the music being played is just as important as what is being served on the plate.”

Hero image courtesy of Đi Ăn Đi