"This is the best thing for people trying to get kids to eat their vegetables," Heuer jokes. "Normally I'm a picky eater and would have left some vegetables to the side." The irony is, if you dine in the dark, people are less likely to notice.
Without being able to judge a book, er, a vegetable by its cover, diners are left to grope blindly what's on their plates and the table around them. Heuer laughed at himself when he reached around an invisible centerpiece for his date's hands—only to realize the obstacle wasn't even there. Likewise, New Yorker Erin Peschiera, 28, who had a "blind" date with her husband at Greenwich Village bistro Camaje, found that working without hand-eye coordination proved difficult when getting food from plate to mouth.
"My favorite part was the feeling of being sight-deprived. Seeing can be very distracting, so I was very focused on my other senses and the company of my friends, the food, and the wine."
Salisbury's events, which she hosts for the public at Camaje and privately throughout the Northeast and Florida, also incorporate musicians, vocalists and even tap dancers to feed the audible appetite. Employees occasionally will even rub patrons' shoulders to enhance the evening.
"At one point I felt someone rubbing my back and I thought it was my husband," Peschiera says. "It was one of the Dark Dining people, which came as a big surprise—when I went to hold his hand, it was a woman's!" Whether dark dining has yet to arrive in your area or you’d rather limit blindfold use to the comfort of your own home, the concept is easy to replicate as long as you have at least one watchful eye around and a sense of adventure.