Picking Akila Waka’s Brain

Interview with Akila Waka

Akila WakaWe’re Joined again by Akila Waka of Kiki.Foodie, and this time we wanted to get some more insight into what goes into this awesome blog. These are some highlights from the second part of this two part interview:

Looking at the community of bloggers people and the foodie scene around you, would you say community is thriving?

Currently I am living in Austin, Texas in United States. I chose this specific location to live for one year because of its thriving food culture. The culture around food and food bloggers in Austin is huge. This goes for the all the places I have lived in. I was always able to move to a new location and follow a bunch of bloggers from the area and get in touch with one or the other bloggers for advice. This always shaped my experiences in the various locations. Finding the authentic experiences through local bloggers.

However, keep in mind that the “Instagrammable” lifestyle is mainly a thing in the United States. Multiple museums and murals today are built around the idea that people will come to take selfies or photos. For instance, I attended an event here in Austin which was by one of the local food bloggers A taste of Koko. It was called the Donut Museum; the whole area was just set up to try donuts from different locations in Austin as well as spots to take your instagrammable snap shots. This is also the case for the Museum of Ice cream in L.A and many more “pop-up” style museum in the United States. The museums have shifted into an experience rather than an educational space with audio tours or just a text.

I have not noticed this happening anywhere else in Europe or in South Africa.

What advice would you give to someone who aspires to be an inspirational foodie like yourself?

Definitely go for “out of the norm”, don’t follow, create your own brand. Creating your own style is important because after that everything falls in place. I can’t say for sure what my brand/style is at the moment but I try my best to post things that I like and genuinely want others to try.

In your kitchen, what is the one item/ingredient that would leave it incomplete without it?

This is definitely a difficult question. I believe despite all the awesome gadgets and ingredients out there, the phrase anyone who steps into a kitchen should chant is “Don’t forget to season!” Salt, Pepper, Spices etc. without these the food would not be able to reach its full potential. I am saying this because I recently went to a dinner party and the food was heavily under seasoned and all the guests were just tossing their food around the plate, the food had potential to be delicious, it was just missing something to bring it to life. Seasoning is so important; I cannot stress that enough. That is usually the first thing I buy when I stock my new kitchen.

Where do you see the foodie world going in South Africa in the next 5 years and what role do you believe you will playing?

I see big things for South Africa. The diversity in flavour profile South African cuisine can reach has always impressed everyone I have introduced it to. Besides that, I have noticed a reasonable amount of European style coffee shops starting to pop up in Pretoria East as well as Cape Town. Cape Town has been a hub for foodie spots in the last 5 years and don’t doubt it will be even bigger in 5 years. It has also been in the radar of most famous bloggers like Casey Neistat from NYC. This makes an explosion of tourism as well as new hip foodie places we can all enjoy. I see myself settling down in Cape Town in the next 10 years and hopefully will have my own little restaurant.

Akila thanks for joining us

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