Local Food Economy

All About the Cooks: Diversifying local food businesses in Bristol and beyond!

By Ben White

Our latest story is an update by Ben White from All About the Cooks, a marketplace website that allows talented home-cooks to sell their food to local people in Bristol and now beyond. Find out how you can find real food made by local people near you.

Crikey. It’s been just over two years since we opened for business – and as it turns out, people in Bristol really do want real home-cooked food made by local people from their own kitchens! 

There’s a lot to catch up on, so… where to start? Well, seeing as we’re “All About the Cooks”, let’s start with the people who make this all possible – the cooks.

At this moment, we have managed to put more than £50k directly into our home-cooks’ pockets! We’re so proud to be able to boast about how money goes through the platform and exchanges between hands in communities (and out of the hands of large food service monopolies).

By making sure that talented individuals in communities are reaping the rewards of their skills, we have observed some really encouraging results…

The Saigon Kitchen restaurant

One of our Vietnamese cooks, Trung, has gone on to open his own restaurant – The Saigon Kitchen!

In February 2022, Trung went from cooking as a side-hustle to restaurant owner and we’re over the moon to see him and his team going from strength to strength. We highly recommend going if you get a chance!

And something else happened in 2022 which will make stories like this a real possibility for many of our cooks…

We raised over £325k from 204 investors through a successful crowdfund (hitting 120% of our target)! From this, we’ve been able to grow, with the addition of a dedicated marketing team – and a growing team means one thing, a growing business.

All About the Cooks home meal

Raising this investment has enabled us to expand to our first new city outside of Bristol – to our very welcoming neighbours in Bath!

To introduce ourselves, we hosted a really tasty evening meal, showcasing the food of three of our Bath cooks, Russel and Quelly, Mahesh and Dino.

Growing, for us, doesn’t only mean moving to new cities – it also means deepening our presence in the cities we’re already in! We’ve recruited so many new Bristol-based cooks, which you can find here – but here’s a little taste (excuse the pun) of some of the home-cooks you can now order from on All About the Cooks:

Nawa, Eastville

Nawa (All About the Cooks chef)

“From a very early age I loved Thai food, especially the way my mom cooked it – there were never any leftovers on the plate.”

Hor Mok Pla (Steamed salmon in red curry mousse)

Nawa likes to cook food that you can’t find on menus in the UK. She loves to recreate her favourite childhood dishes – like this Hor Mok Pla (Steamed salmon in red curry mousse).

Tomer, Bishopston

Tomer(All About the Cooks chef)

“Growing up in Tel Aviv, I was lucky to be surrounded by a large family… and found inspiration from cuisines from a variety of backgrounds – namely Iraqi, from my dad’s side of the family, Yemeni and Turkish – from my mum’s side – as well as Persian and Moroccan.”

Tomer's 'Middle Eastern Feast' selecton

Tomer changes his “Middle-Eastern Feast” at the start of each week, and every time it is as consistently as amazing as the last!

If you want to find real food made by local people near you, then enter your postcode here, or alternatively, if you would like to become a cook, then register your interest and we will be in touch!

Join the conversation

So, what change do you want to see happen that will transform food in Bristol by 2030? Do you already have an idea for how Bristol can make this happen? Join the conversation now.

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