Midi 57 Restaurant & Bar opened its doors at Jalan Bangkung on the 22 June 2012, exactly three weeks after Madisons. Both are Italian eateries, with the former’s kitchen run by an Italian chef while the latter energized by an Australian chef. I was just finishing lunch at 2pm last Thursday when I was called in to do a food shoot at 7pm over at Midi 57.
In spite of the short notice, I managed to make it there on time to setup outside just beside the wood-fire pizza-making station. It was uncomfortably hot of course.
I maintained the same settings throughout; 1/200 sec, f/8 @ ISO 100, with one small soft box key light at my high frontal 2 o’clock position, and another gridded strobe shot through a transparent giant reflector to camera left at 10 o’clock position.
There was a small delivery window to my left that offered a view into the kitchen. I saw my first dish being lined up before serving; Roasted Prawns in Lobster coral butter with beetroot foam.
This was how I set it up. Seen here was a mirror used to reflect an added punch of light into the prawns.
The above series of pictures shows the comparison of lighting difference with and without the use of a mirror.
1) Without a mirror, the dish looked overly backlit with lost of details to our main hero of the dish, the prawns.
2) With a mirror, the top part of the stack of prawns was brought to live with a dash of light. The foamy beetroot texture was also beginning to show its texture.
3) I noticed the dark shadows below the plate. By carefully placing the mirror at an angle, I killed two birds with one stone: showing some TLC to my prawns and giving the underside of my plate some daylight.
4) After some further tweaks and usage of a larger mirror, I arrived at this pleasantly lit appetiser.
And here was the pullback shot to give context to the dish. The shadow on the brick wall behind was the unlit portion by the softbox, deliberately angled to create the illusion of a shaft of light lighting the table from high camera left.
The second course of the night was this Champagne Lemon Risotto and Fine De Claire.
Next, was this lovely and earthy looking dish of Loin of Venison with duo of Juniper Berry and White Pepper sauce, poached apple, Cranberry and crispy Potato noodle. What a mouthful, figuratively and literally of course.
Finally, it was dessert with this Bavarois of white chocolate and mint sauce, to complete this 4-course dinner.
After the shoot, I took the opportunity to grab a few more frames of some wine glasses and the distinctive Coke bottle filled with rosemary olive oil, and a cute science lab-lookalike round bottle of vinegar.
Here are some snippets of the ambience of Midi 57 Restaurant & Bar, truly a place to sit back and soak in the raw Italian energy, with the perfect blend of food, wine and music.