A Cafe’s Guide: Working with Food Bloggers

Approaching food bloggers for your marketing is pretty fool-proof. You are on display to thousands of their followers at little cost to yourself. Compared to advertising in the mainstream media, it is a smart move.

We have noticed recently we are getting a lot more requests from cafes and restaurants regarding using our foodie Instagram to promote their business. While some cafes have gotten straight to the point and know exactly what they want, there are also places that are new to the game and aren’t sure what to expect.

We have put together a small guide to point you in the right direction and answer some of your questions.

Selecting your food bloggers

We would recommend you select quite a few. If you have a few bloggers all posting at the same time about your business, your food takes over everyone’s timelines and makes people interested in why so many people are visiting you. You also need to think about the right food bloggers for you, do they usually post the food you serve? do they post close up images of food or flat lays? do they mainly focus on cafes/restaurants or home cooking products? All of these elements matter depending on what you’re looking for.

man taking picture of food on top of table inside restaurant
Photo by cottonbro on Pexels.com

How many followers should they have?

Once someone hits 1-2K followers, I believe they start having a decent following. Generally the more followers you have the small your engagement rate is, so keep that in mind when you approach the big guys. Of course you need to be careful of people who buy followers. You can generally check by looking at their followers list and seeing if the followers look real/are from the same country or state.

How to approach your selected food bloggers?

A simple Instagram DM is usually the best way to get a quick response. You should introduce yourself and be clear you want to collaborate. I find it best when they know what they want to acheive (eg. 2 posts and 3 instagram stories). Also be open to dates and times, don’t make them only come at awkward times of the day when you’re quiet.

Make sure your staff are prepared

You think this would be obvious, but we have arrived at cafes and the staff have no idea the manager organised for us to come. It becomes awkward when I need to show messages and prove I’m not making it up.

cheerful black waitress standing at counter
Photo by Andrea Piacquadio on Pexels.com

Don’t change your dishes for us

You should serve us exactly what you would serve any other person. A few times we have been given huge proportions and then realised this isn’t a normal dish and when we post the image, it’s basically a catfish version of what they will really get. While we appreciate you going above and beyond, we want to showcase to our followers what they would actually get, if they decided to visit you. BUT do put us in a good seat next to natural light for our photos.

What are the costs involved for you?

Most bloggers will be happy to come along as long as you provide the meal. You definitely can’t expect people to go out of there way, showcase your food – and pay for it (yes we have been asked to pay for it before). Larger bloggers may requirement payment – you will have to deal with this on a case by case basis.

And to conclude, in no way are we complaining about anyone that has approached us. We are so greatful for every experience we have had. This is just a guide to help you, next time you are looking into food bloggers for your marketing.

Have you seen our latest blog on The Hideout Cafe and Pizza?

Don’t forget to follow us on Instagram to stay up to date with where are we eating: https://www.instagram.com/whatthehaloumi and subscribe to our newsletter for our next article!

Review: The Hideout Cafe & Pizza

We spend our days trying to find new, exciting and hidden cafes around Sydney and just when we thought we had found them all, along comes a café that was in hiding.

The Hideout Café is surrounded by houses in the backstreets of Old Toongabbie just off Old Windsor Road. It looks like your average take-away, however, once you sample that menu, average gives way to amazing!

What did we have?

The choices on this menu are endless. Your breakfast, brunch, lunch and pizza cravings are sorted. We started with the Smoked Salmon with spinach and avocado on sourdough. A delicious dish with fresh ingredients, the sourdough with a good spread of cream cheese. Next we devoured the Vegetarian Stack consisting of our favourite “haloumi”, spinach, mushrooms, avocado, hash brown, grilled tomato on sourdough with two perfectly cooked poached eggs. Add a dash of basil pesto and you have a dish to satisfy plenty of tastes. To finish – a sweet dish to balance out the morning – Acai Bowl with crunchy granola, almonds, banana, kiwi and strawberries. Delishous! The Chai Latte and Soy Cap lived up to our standards.

Hidden Cafes - The Hideout Cafe & Pizza
Photography – What the Haloumi

The lunch menu also includes sandwiches and wraps, pizzas, burgers, fish and chips, skewers etc.. If you are looking for a new café, this is definitely worth a try. It is a busy place and that usually means one thing, and the staff are super friendly – always a plus!

We will definitely be returning to sample the delicious lunch menu.

Hidden Cafes - The Hideout Cafe and Pizza
Photography – What the Haloumi

Do you know any hidden cafes around Sydney? We’d love to hear about them!

Have you seen our latest blog on the best places for solo dining in Sydney?

Don’t forget to follow us on Instagram to stay up to date with where are we eating: https://www.instagram.com/whatthehaloumi and subscribe to our newsletter for our next article!

Last minute Valentine’s Day plans in Sydney

How are you spending your Valentine’s Day in Sydney? With a few days remaining between now and Valentine’s Day, if you haven’t made any plans, I guess you fall into the last minute plans category. But, not to worry! If you are in need of a restaurant, we have made a list for you below (can’t guarantee they aren’t booked out at this stage lol). Also, hopefully my boyfriend is reading this for ideas haha!

1. Subterranean

Top of our list for Valentine’s Day in Sydney – we are going straight to the Greek cuisine with Subterranean. They are a bar and grill with a menu full of Mediterranean dining options. You can even enhance your experience with their butler services and why not? It’s Valentine’s Day! They have a 2 and 3 course dinner available which are reasonably priced starting from $48pp.

Photo by Roman Kraft on Unsplash

2. The Grounds of Alexandria

If your partner is an Instagram lover, than the Grounds and Alexandria will be the perfect date. A kissing booth with neon lights, photogenic backdrops and good food is what you will find when you arrive. The grounds caters for all prices points too with dining and takeaway options available. This is probably a better lunch option as they have a bubble show at 9am and 11am for you to watch.

3. Tequila Mockingbird

If you wanted to spend a bit more on your date this Valentine’s Day in Sydney and splurge then Tequila Mockingbird Restaurant will be for you. If margaritas and an 8 course set menu are your style you’ve come to the perfect place. Oh and before we mention the price, you also get to take home some chocolates. You can receive all this for $110pp!

Photo by Jamie Street on Unsplash

4. Pilu

Do you want to be near the beach this Valentine’s Day? Who wouldn’t! Pilu at Freshwater are putting on a special menu for the special day. It is $165pp or $235pp to include wine. If I still have your attention, the menu consists of spaghetti, trout, lamb and a delicious dolce. Sounds great, especially if it is in your price range haha!

5. Lakeside Restaurant

For our Western Sydney readers, we’re taking you all the way out to Penrith. Lakeside Restaurant has a special Valentine’s Day dinner for 2 in Sydney. For $69pp you receive a 3 course meal and glass of wine (that’s a great deal). The coures have quite a few choices as well so it is perfect for the picky eaters haha!

Happy Valentine’s Day!!

Have you seen our latest blog on the top 5 pasta places in sydney

Don’t forget to follow us on Instagram to stay up to date with where are we eating: https://www.instagram.com/whatthehaloumi and subscribe to our newsletter for our next article!

Top 5 pasta places in Sydney

Is this rainy weather in Sydney causing you to crave a nice big bowl of pasta? Well, you’re not alone! We are craving it too. So, we have thought of all our favourite pasta places we’ve visited of the years and complied a list for you. Lets consider it the top 5 places to find pasta in Sydney.

1. Italian Bowl

We had to put this place at the top of our 5 places to find the best pasta in Sydney. The options are endless and we haven’t tried an option yet that hasn’t been delicious. You can basically pick any sauce on their menu (there’s a lot) and add any pasta of your choice to it. The kitchen is on display too so you can see all your meals come out fresh and piping hot! Make sure to add a slide of garlic bread, because what is a bowl of pasta without a slice.

2. Belmonte Italian Cuisine

For those in the Hills District of Sydney, you cannot go past Belmonte’s pasta dishes. Another huge menu with too many options to pick from, so there will be a dish for everyone. This place has a very old fashioned family feel to it and it shows in their meals. The portions are huge and the pricing is decent. We would recommend their marinara pasta, it’s huge and full of seafood!

3. Assembly Bar

If you’re in the CBD and stuck with the endless options of food places, Assembly Bar is a great option. They are underground and have quite a few pasta options, with vegan varieties available as well! If you go during the week they have some great deals on their dishes. Perfect for a work lunch or dinner and there is a bar on the side if you need a drink after a long day of work.

4. Macchiato

Another CBD option you need to try is Macchiato. This restaurant is huge and so is the menu! There are some mixed reviews online, however, the recent time we went (there was a group of 10 of us) no one had anything but compliments to say about the place. We tried everything from pasta, pizza and main meals! They also have a great bar here as well if you want to accompany your pasta with a nice glass of wine.

5. Verace Pizzeria

Last but not least is Verace Pizzeria in Macquarie Park. Another perfect place for a work lunch or weekend gathering. We tried their seafood pasta dish and it was fresh and delicious – there were also quite a few other pasta dishes to pick from. The dishes were the perfect size for us as well with a added slice of garlic bread haha!

Have you seen our latest blog on the top 5 places for ice-cream in sydney?

Don’t forget to follow us on Instagram to stay up to date with where are we eating: https://www.instagram.com/whatthehaloumi and subscribe to our newsletter for our next article!

Where to find the best Maltese food in Sydney

Whether you are Maltese or love the cuisine, you are probably on the hunt for a good Maltese food in Sydney. There aren’t a lot in the area but the few we seem to have are quite good. See our list below of our top cafes to visit.

1. Limestone Cafe

In the western suburbs of Sydney, you’ll find Schofields and you’ll also find Limestone Cafe. This Cafe opened a few years ago in the area and serves up some delicious Maltese food. We can’t go past the all day breakfast menu or their dinner option of Rabbit Spaghetti. They also have coffee and pastizzis for eat in or take-away. It is definitely worth the visit if you are not from the area as well.

Where can you find them? 119 Railway Terrace, Schofields
When are they open? Sun-Wed 5:30am-3pm or Thurs-Sat 5:30am-3pm and 5:30pm to 9:30pm

2. Pastizzi Cafe

The name of this place definitely gives away the type of food they are serving! Pastizzi Cafe is located in the busy inner-west suburb of Newtown. There are plenty of pastizzi flavours to pick from as well and large portions of ravioli and every other pasta you can think of. Oh and goodluck on finding a parking spot – I would get their early!

Where can you find them? 523 King St, Newtown
When are they open? Mon-Sun 10am-12am

Unfortunately, with only two options, that is the end of our list. There isn’t a lot of Maltese food in Sydney to pick from but both options above are great!

Have you seen our latest article on our top 5 spicy restaurants in Sydney?

Don’t forget to follow us on Instagram to stay up to date with where are we eating: https://www.instagram.com/whatthehaloumi and subscribe to our newsletter for our next article!

Food choices in Darling Square, Sydney

I like to pick where I am going to eat before I go somewhere. Sometimes I even pick what I’m going to eat off the menu haha! Here is a list of the food choices you have in Sydney’s new Darling Square.

1.Pasta Wafu

Pasta with a twist! If you like Japanese food, this one may be for you. It’s Japanese inspired pasta, like Miso Bolognese. All the dishes look really interesting and the few I tried were delicious. Serving sizes are a little on the small side so I would recommend you get some sides with it.

Photography – TimeOut

2.Saga Lyte

Now if you are feeling more like bakery food at Darling Square, Saga Lyte is the place for you. The cakes and large pies with catch your eye as you walk past this place. They even have a classic Aussie meat pie, if that is what you are craving.

Photography – Broadsheet

3.Hakata-Maru Ramen

For our ramen lovers, Hakata-Maru Ramen has you covered. Their flagship store in Darling Square can fix all your noodle cravings. If you are bring a group of non ramen lovers, they also have rice and curry dishes as well!

Photography – Good Food

4.Bubble Nini

And for our bubble tea lovers, we bring to you last on our list Bubble Nini. This place is honestly the best tea place we have found in Sydney. The flavours are delicious and there are many options. I recommend the brown sugar pearls!

Photography – Zomato

Will you be trying out any of these places in Darling Square?

Have you seen our latest article on new cafes and restaurants opening in Sydney in 2020?

Don’t forget to follow us on Instagram to stay up to date with where are we eating: https://www.instagram.com/whatthehaloumi