Social. Foodie. Experiential travel. Local travel. These all seem to be buzz words of late. But what happens when you combine the lot? Something beautiful that’s been coined, social eating.
BonAppetour is a relatively new company that offers local and travelers a vehicle to connect. It’s easy really, if you’re traveling and looking for an opportunity to meet and engage with locals you can log on to their site and book into a dining event organised by one of their registered hosts. They currently offer activities in over 50 cities, across 5 continents with more on the horizon. Events are in many forms – from lunch and brunch to dinner and themed dining experiences – and cater to all budgets. Oh and they’re open to all – travelers and locals alike.
Through BonAppetour I met Francesco, Veronica and Anna Lisa. These young professionals run a food inspired cultural association called Radici and are registered as hosts on the site. Radici is the Italian word for roots and speaks to their commitment to showcasing local produce and maintaining cultural and family food traditions (the girls have Calabrian heritage while Francesco is Roman). This passion shines very much in both their personalities and their cooking.
And so on a (rainy) spring evening I headed to their place in Rome’s Monti neighbourhood with a couple of friends. We’d never met. I was literally going to be having dinner at a bunch of strangers’ house! I didn’t really know what to expect, but I love meeting people, sharing stories and good food and wine. And so do the hosts of BonAppettour and anyone who takes it upon themselves to host a social eating event. Needless to say, over a few bottles of wine, just about anyone can bond – and bond we did! In a gorgeous setting too (Francesco and Veronica are architects and their home also serves as their studio!).Here’s what they cooked for us:
I’m a huge fan of this social eating thing (well, I’m social and love eating – so what’s not to like!). It’s not only a way for people to meet and socialise but in the way BonAppetour have formalised it, gives travelers a real opportunity to meet and have a snapshot into the lives of locals around the world. What travel experience could be more enriching than that!
Thanks again to Francesco, Veronica and Anna Lisa! We didn’t know each other a few weeks ago but our passions in life brought us together and now I consider them my friends!
Signing off from Trastevere
Acknowledgements: I was a guest of BonAppetour for this Radici-organised social eating event, but nobody ever tells me what to write! All views and images are my own.