The #FBC14 strEAT Party is stuffing attendees with fresh festivities, but also welcoming back a handful of FBC Alumni Feeders! We are delighted to announce Coconut Chilli (@coconutchilli) are returning to the FBC strEAT Party with a new look and range of food to dish up at FBC!
We’re so excited to be attending the Food Blogger Connect conference again. Last year, on a baking hot day in June, Coconut Chilli received many, many compliments about our salt marsh lamb koftes. This year, we’re looking forward to showcasing our range of ‘Hill Station inspired Indian cuisine’ to the plethora of enthusiastic international food blogger community!
What can FBC attendees expect from you at the event?’
Coconut Chilli only trades at the best food festivals & events. We’re based in food loving Bristol, so there is no shortage of choice – Grillstock, Bristol Food Connections, which is a week long event run by the BBC in conjunction with the Food & Farming awards, Love Food… we also deliver directly to Bristol offices and hope to be available in shops soon.
How did you hear about FBC?
I heard about FBC via blogger ‘Can be bribed with Food’. It was really special to meet so many enthusiastic food lovers last year, all of whom were very complimentary about Coconut Chilli street food. This year, we’ve moved away from cooking street food fresh on site and have developed a range of ‘prepared meal pots’ inspired by the Coorgi hills of South India where my aunt owns a coffee estate!
Tell us a little bit about who you are.
Coconut Chilli was born from street food roots, but I’ve brought out a range of products as the trading conditions for street food outside of London are poor. Bristol City Council behaved in an obstructive manner and there were too many hoops to jump through to set up a regular weekly street food night market. Bristol as a city was ready for it, but it didn’t make financial sense for me to pursue it – oh and the UK weather doesn’t help either! Coconut Chilli now creates products which customers can buy in retail outlets and hope that we’ll be stocked in Wholefoods & Waitrose in time.
What other events do you take part in throughout the year?
I like Digbeth Dining Club in Birmingham which is a weekly street food night. It attracts real foodies & has a brilliant, enthusiastic atmosphere. I’m hoping to trade at Grillstock again this year – it’s a BBQ festival which was founded in Bristol. The team are very choosy about the traders they allow – there are strict foodie criteria. The festival draws people from all over the UK!
Are you a fan of food, travel, lifestyle blogs?
I love food/travel/lifestyle blogs. They provide a welcome break from working life and can lighten my day during a well-earned break. Well structured, eloquently written copy and quality images are a must though. I like the fact that bloggers can search out foody things happening in a hidden part of the world. When searching for a blogger, the relationship needs to be built on trust and should be mutually beneficial. I would love to invite bloggers to my aunt’s coffee estate in the Coorg, South India. It’s a phenomenal holiday spot full of family-run home stays and is well known in India, but not so much in other countries.
I think bloggers are important as they are the ‘people’s voice’ within the food scene. Bloggers are important because they can make food accessible – whether they are reviewing the latest restaurant with a horrendous waiting list or giving an honest opinion about a product they have tried – and they have no ulterior motive, a blogger would never give a positive review like a ‘celebrity’ might! Social media is fundamental to my business – it’s important to share ‘behind the scenes’ information and I am a genuinely social person, I like talking online to people who are interested in Coconut Chilli.
If you could cook for anyone – anyone! Who would it be and why?
I would love to cook for Nigel Slater. He is so passionate about sourcing and flavour & I’d love to spend a Sunday afternoon cooking with him. He really does seem like he could talk about food for hours, so I think we’d get on very well indeed.
How can a successful restaurant or eatery grow and expand without losing it’s heart and soul and staying true to its food and ethos- any examples of any one who has achieved this?
I think a successful chain can only grow to a certain size without losing it’s heart and soul. A great example is Boston Tea Party – a chain of cafes in the SW. Their focus is on quality of ingredients and good service, but they regularly bring out new dishes and keep their coffee menu fresh. Most importantly, they are still independent.
|VIEW THIS YEAR'S PROGRAMME||REGISTER NOW|
|VENUE, TRAVEL, LODGING||SPEAKERS LIST|