If you’re looking for a new, one-of-a-kind food experience in DC, look no further than Feastly. This startup combines the best of both worlds, utilizing modern technology to give local foodies truly original meals. Basically, the idea is that any home cook can turn their home into a restaurant for a night. Interested people conceive, create, and cook the meal, and Feastly features it on their site. Potential eaters can browse through upcoming menus, choosing from experiences ranging from Korean barbeque or a night of performance art where all food is eaten sans utensils.
Noah Karesh came up with the idea for Feastly while he was traveling in Guatemala and found he couldn’t actually find any authentic Guatemalan food. He was inspired to create a platform where communities could be built around sharing food; he cited the occasional lack of authenticity in restaurants as part of his inspiration. As Karesh said, the philosophy behind Feastly is to use, “technology to empower individuals and create bread-breaking communities.” Feastly is all about fostering human connection and creativity through food: if you have a passion for pickles and you want to create an entire meal around pickles, Feastly will help you do it. You decide the number of people you’d like to host, the menu, and the cost, and Feastly will find other pickle-minded guests you can share a brine-y meal with. Karesh calls Feastly the best kind of social network, commenting that “people have 5000 friends on Facebook, but they’re still eating alone.”
And why DC? Karesh and his business partner, Danny Harris, live in the District and have long been impressed with the city’s burgeoning food scene; it seemed a natural place to launch their new venture. “We also felt that there are vibrant communities in DC that are glossed over because of the veneer of DC being a colder, more transient place,” Karesh said. Feastly is decidedly local; chefs have been professional chefs and caterers, enthusiastic 22-year-old home cooks, and at one dinner, diners picked food from a local farm. Karesh is also no stranger to the DC restaurant scene itself; he’s a co-owner of The Blind Dog Cafe, the pop-up coffee shop on Florida Ave.
Right now, Feastly offers about two to four meals per week, and most meals cost about $30. Feastly plans to expand to New York City this summer, with the goal of expanding of eventually expanding globally. If you’re interested in expanding your food horizons, we highly suggest you head to EatFeastly.com and sign up for an account.