It's always great to meet somebody talented who is tremendously passionate about what they do – and there is no denying that Andy Fenner, the talent behind the Jamie Who? blog, is just such a person. In the relatively short time that he has been blogging he has built a reputation for himself as an exciting new voice in SA food writing – and when you meet him in person you will know that the voice on his blog is a true reflection of the man himself. Pull up a chair – let's chat to him:
1. Where are you – in South Africa or out in the wide world?
South Africa. Based in Cape Town and the Garden Route but I try and write about JHB too, as I am up there fairly often.
2. How long have you been blogging?
Since about mid-2009
3. What do you enjoy the most about food or wine blogging?
I believe anyone can fall in love with food – you don't need to be famous. I love de-mystifying food and showing people that they need to try things. I also love explaining to people that they need to start appreciating where food comes from. I like to ask people to visit markets instead of shopping malls. Pick up a butternut, feel it and smell it. Don't buy it already cubed and in a plastic packet!
4. Any downsides or frustrations?
There are some malicious people out there and with success comes jealousy. I have been lucky enough to have been able to turn food writing into a career and I am always shocked that certain people seem to resent me for that. Also, being linked to certain brands doesn't mean you have "sold out". I hate it when people use that phrase.
5. What or who are your inspirations to cook, drink and write?
My readers. The fact that I know I have people reading my blog everyday means I can't be lazy or boring! Which is awesome and something I don't take for granted.
6. Where and when do you like to blog?
My blog is part of something a bit bigger but it is still my "basecamp" where I load most of my content. I spend most of my time on deadlines for magazines but the blog is my personal space without editors, briefs, deadlines etc. so it's super-important. I give myself an hour in the morning every day to make sure it's current.
7. What's your signature dish or favourite wine?
Signature dish at home is tuna steaks on the Weber for summer, and braised lamb shanks which I shred into gnocchi in winter. I absolutely love entertaining and often have friends over. For the wine I'll take a chilled Chardonnay or any Shiraz/Syrah.
8. What other food or wine blogs do you read?
There are loaaaaaads. CookSister course! Then Rossouws Restaurants, Eat Out, Eat In, Scrumptious, Nina's My Easy Cooking and too many more to mention
9. Favourite restaurant?
That's like asking a mother of three who her favourite child is! If I had to choose it would probably be Bizerca Bistro, or Massimo's Pizza Club.
10. For my last meal on this planet I would order…
The roasted scallop and pig's trotter dish from Bizerca Bistro. And a big glass of the Galpin Peak Pinot Noir from Bouchard Finlayson to wash it down. I would die a happy man.