Tastemade poised to cook competition

Image via Tastemade
Image via Tastemade

Tastemade combines the style of Food Network with the reviews of Yelp into one flavorfully fun app where tastemakers of all ages can shoot, edit and post minute-long videos talking about and showcasing their favorite restaurants from around the world.

The Santa Monica based company was founded by former Demand Media executives Larry Fitzgibbon, Joe Perez, and Steven Kydd, who recently secured $10 million in Series B funding spearheaded by Rain Venture Partners. The trio, who originally established Tastemade as a digital food network on YouTube, has already amassed over 28,000 videos and 12 million unique visitors in its first 12 months, and are now branching out on iOS, offering an amazingly simple app for foodies to share anything and everything from their favorite hidden-away burger joint in San Francisco to the best pizza in Chicago.

[contextly_sidebar id=”2d866494c62248151644e6f5e20f93b6″]The concept is as brilliant as it is simple, as using the video capabilities on mobile, I can either shoot myself selfie-style, or get a friend to help out with either the hosting or camera duties. From there, it’s as easy as hitting record while spitting superlatives about what makes the restaurant you’re talking about stand out. Shoot some atmosphere shots to showcase the décor, close in on the delicious food, and you’ve got a slickly produced short on your favorite culinary destination ready to share, not only with other Tastemade users, but across social media thanks to the app’s ultra-simple, touch control editing system that even adds appropriate background music to the menu of options.

“In the way the Food Network started at the dawning of cable, we want to build the defining food related brand for the digital age,” said Fitzgibbon. “We’re inspired by blogs. Blogs are steeped with passion, but what we haven’t seen is that passion being brought to video, so that’s what we focused on.

“What’s so incredible about the technology now is that there’s so much leverage in it, you can create very high-quality HD programming at a fraction of the cost, and now that’s extending to mobile. Everyday, we’re able to create better looking videos with our mobile devices, and that’s where our app comes in.”

And with up to 50-percent of Tastemade’s YouTube audience already watching the company’s videos from mobile, they decided to launch their own app to continue their growth, while at the same time, continuing to get food-lovers to share stories and recommendations about greasy spoons and classic eateries across the globe.

“We started on YouTube because there are a billion people watching videos on that platform, even if there are only a million people creating the content,” said Perez. “It’s not the easiest thing to shoot a video, edit it on their computer, then post on YouTube and understand how YouTube works. So one of the things we thought was, what if we could tap into the up-and-coming consumers, the next stars that aren’t really great at editing videos. What if we could give them an HD studio on their phone and let them create a video within minutes. The whole concept with this app is we wanted people to be able to use this technology to create a show or an episode of a show.

“We just launched the app a couple of weeks ago, and we’re already in over 130 different cities and over 20 countries in 7 different languages in that short amount of time. Everybody has five or ten places where they love to eat, and now it’s time to share those places with the rest of the world.”

And with the ease of use and sharp quality of videos produced, expect Tastemade to not only change the way you think about food, but the way people shoot and edit mobile video in the near future.

Trust us, it’s that delicious to create (and consume).