A new cdrama, Royal Feast, recently aired! This culinary and palace drama set in the Ming Dynasty stars the original cast of the hit drama Story of Yanxi Palace.
As the name implies, Royal Feast (尚食, Shang Shi) is a historical drama that focuses on the palace cuisine of the Ming Dynasty.
The story takes place during the Yongle period of the Ming Dynasty, where the young cook Yao Zijin, played by Wu Jinyan, enters the palace and shows her "culinary talent" step by step, and eventually becomes a female official of the Food Bureau of the Imperial Palace.
Royal Feast not only presents many court food, but also the sweet palace love between Yao Zijin and Zhu Zhanji, the imperial grandson.
In this article, we will share the highlights of Royal Feast from food, costumes, and props.
Palace cuisine in Royal Feast
The cuisine is the most important part of the drama! For the important Food Bureau of the Imperial Palace scene design, the team carefully drew a detailed structural model drawing, and made a detailed restoration of each place.
In order to restore the menu of the Forbidden City in the Ming Dynasty, the non-heritage team was invited to design the dishes, and the art team presented the style suitable for the drama.
A variety of different dishes are presented in the film. And the cooking and preparation process of the food is wonderfully presented through the slow-motion footage of upscaling.
The most exquisite dish is the Jiangnan garden-inspired "Painting of Wangchuan".
Whether it is the light color scheme or the shape and structure, or the idea and carving skills, perhaps can be called a culinary art.
At the same time, in order to enhance the knowledge and popularity. The preparation of dishes in the drama is also accompanied by a special commentary.
In addition to the important dishes, the utensils and trays that hold the dishes are not sloppy.
The team designed a detailed restoration of the style and flow of the utensils, the serving action, with reference to famous Chinese paintings.
It is recorded in the "Gong Ting Du Ji" that in order to prevent birds from stealing food from the plate, it is necessary to cover the plate with a gold silk cage. The eunuch responsible for serving food needs to cover the mouth and nose to prevent contact with the food.
Thus, referring to the Ming dynasty style, in addition to the process of making dishes, also other details also show the sense of royal ritual. It completely satisfies our imagination of the ancient court.
Traditional Costumes in Royal Feast
The art design, which provides a sense of atmosphere for the cuisine, is also extremely important.
Royal Feast is also known as "one of the most historically accurate Ming Dynasty dramas in recent years".
The art team behind Royal Feast is Luan He Xin, who has many years of experience in drama and film art.
He once served as the chief art designer behind the drama "Empresses in the Palace", "Ruyi's Royal Love in the Palace", "Story of Yanxi Palace", "Winter Begonia" and so on.
He has a deep background and excellent skills. And he is very good at visualizing historical materials and relics, and presenting historical props that meet the visual habits of the audience.
With such a team, both the color palette and art details are extremely capable of classical Chinese aesthetics.
After studying the canon and actual artifacts. The art team has made reference to the "Ming Palace Crown Costumes and Ceremonial Battles", the old collection of Ming costumes from the Kong Family Mansion and a wide range of Ming portraits, which are quite rigorous.
For example, the "Jiaoling Aoqun" in the drama, the style, and the color scheme referred to the ancient paintings.
The "Guan Mian Fu" of the Yongle Emperor. Not only does it fit perfectly in style, but the dark pattern and embroidered design perfectly reproduce the majesty and solemnity of being an emperor.
As well as the "Da Mao (大帽)" worn by the Ming Dynasty royal family when riding. The black yarn shows the weaving skills of the time, portable and beautiful.
The color scheme in Royal Feast also follows the Morandi color scheme of "Story of Yanxi Palace".
Compared to the bright red and purple, the Morandi color is elegant and light. And the art team took special to use the unique carved flower decoration of the Ming Dynasty.
It is a perfect match for the Ming Dynasty palace style, which advocates atmosphere and low-key luxury.
Exploration of Costumes and Accessories in Royal Feast:
Core Idea of Royal Feast
There are numerous films and dramas that use cuisine as the theme. Royal Feast chose to integrate cuisine and plot advancement together, making the plot more relaxed and warm.
For example, in the drama, Su Yuehua makes the "Wrapped rice" to comfort a great many starving soldier, which resolves the crisis for the Food Bureau of the Imperial Palace.
There is also the "Meeting of mother and son", with steamed pigeons and pigeon eggs as the main ingredients cooked from the famous dish. Seemingly light and mundane, it is a deep "mother-son bonding". With this dish, Prince Consort makes the emperor recall the deceased empress and forgive the Prince.
Thus, Royal Feast's ambition may be more than telling a story about love and food. It also wants the traditional Chinese cultural values behind the food to be carried forward.
In the first episode, the screenwriter asks us, the audience, a question that runs through the entire series: "What is the meaning of the food?" through a line from the actor.
The core idea of the whole drama is the vision and broad-mindedness of Chinese food culture. Those all-embracing ingredients and delicacies are not only for the appetite, but also for the value of "Food is the first necessity of the people".
However, to break through the constraints of the subject matter of food drama, to tell a good food story, to achieve its cultural value. In fact, this is a more basic task.
All in all, "Royal Feast" is a kind of aesthetic concept of history and food, to show the beauty and heal the tired body and mind.
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