CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCBD) — The Charleston Wine + Food Festival is in full swing, and this year it is getting some recognition on a global stage.
The internet video sensation, Tasty, known for above the table camera shots and hands on demonstrations, is making a stop at the Lowcountry’s biggest food event.
Tasty, a division of Buzzfeed is teaming up with Toyota to roll out a new series of cooking competition videos at food festivals across the nation. Charleston is at the top of the list.
“We knew we had to come to Charleston. We had to be here today,” says Tasty general manager Ashley McCollum. The series, called “Tasty Datenight,” already featured festivals in Los Angeles and South Beach. Now, this social media monster, which has racked up billions of viewers worldwide, sets it’s sights on the Holy City.
“Charleston is an emerging food scene that we felt we needed to be apart of. The wine + food festival is growing and doing great here in Charleston.”
The competition features two local couples, one together for 20 years and the other only a year and a half. Both couples prepare a Tasty recipe in 30 minutes.
The Los Angeles video, which was released about two weeks ago, already has 4.5 million views on Facebook alone. McCollum says the idea for the series is based on the thing that makes the original videos so popular, human connection.
“People are tagging their significant others, saying babe lets do this tonight or we should do this this weekend. We realized it’s really about relationships.”
Hence the name, “Tasty Datenight.”
The final dish is judged by a local chef. In Charleston, it’s the Executive Chef of The Oak Steakhouse and The Macintosh, Jeremiah Bacon.
“This is my hometown, so it’s a big moment of pride to showcase what we do here,” says Bacon, who awards the winner with a free date at The Macintosh.
He says the Wine + Food Festival helps elevate everything that is happening in the food scene here. He also hopes that this video series will inspire future chefs around the world.
“Anytime you can help share ideas it helps bring a comfort level to people,” he says. “Introducing them to a new product, or maybe a new technique, it’s all about getting in the kitchen. You might make mistakes but don’t let that scare you off.”
The final video will be featured later this month on the Tasty Facebook page.