The restaurant Blue Hill at Stone Barns, in Tarrytown, New York follows a very unique and intriguing philosophy. Its food is wholly nose-to-tail, this means they believe in utilizing all parts of the animal and are dedicated to culminating creative methods for eating the entire animal. No waste, nothing left behind. Since they were paying so much attention to food, the way it’s grown and utilized, ceramist Gregg F Moore decided to create a line of tableware that was in tune with their philosophy! Moore collaborated with Dan Barber, the chef and co-owner of Blue Hill, and together they conceived their brainchild, which is grass-fed bone china. What does that mean? It’s basically china or ceramic created from the bones of grass-fed cows, the very cows Barber raises on his farms and uses for meat and dairy.
Designer: Gregg F Moore and Dan Barber
Moore’s tableware collection consists of a bowl, plate, and a cup. Translucent and glazed, with a sleek white structure, the vessels instantly catch your attention! The Blue Hill cows consume grass, instead of following the typical grain-based farm diet. Since they devour grass, they move and roam freely in search of greener pastures. This ensures that their bones are much stronger as compared to the cows found on other conventional farms, leading to stronger, creamier and more durable ceramics.
The bones from the restaurant are fired in a glass kiln, via a process called calcination they transform from a living tissue into calcium phosphate. Moore then mixes this with water and converts it into a sludge.
The sludge is dried and pulverized into a powder that is bone ash, and combined with more water, china stone and kaolin.
The mixture is cast into a mold and allowed to rest for a couple of seconds. It is then inserted into an oxidized electric kiln creating beautiful paper-thin pieces with an organic form.
The tableware is in line with the whole-animal philosophy followed by Blue Hill, promoting food sustainability and maintaining a connection to where food comes from.