The $330,000 “Frankenburger” was cooked and eaten at a London press conference today, and it turns out we have Sergey Brin to thank for the blessed event. The Google co-founder put up the aforementioned cash needed to create the first lab-grown burger, a move borne from a concern for animal welfare. “When you see how these cows are treated, it’s certainly something I’m not comfortable with,” he explains in a 6-minute video for the Guardian.
But enough about Brin, and more about the taste of the patty, which was made from the stem cells of cattle. Reactions, per the BBC:
- Chicago-based author of Taste of Tomorrow, Josh Schonwald:
- “The mouthfeel is like meat. I miss the fat, there’s a leanness to it, but the general bite feels like a hamburger. What was consistently different was flavor.”
- Austrian food trends researcher, Hanni Ruetzler: “I was expecting the texture to be more soft … there is quite some intense taste, it’s close to meat, but it’s not that juicy. The consistency is perfect, but I miss salt and pepper. This is meat to me. It’s not falling apart.”
Fun facts: The burger was dyed with beetroot juice, and flavored with breadcrumbs, caramel, and saffron.