Sharing the food love
Erika Bove was just like any other Instagrammer sharing photos about her life and experiences in Bermuda.
Then one day her pictures caught the eye of the Bermuda Tourism Authority.
Now she’s one of four lucky individuals who get to eat out for free and share the experience on Instagram (@labovee).
It’s all part of Bermuda Restaurant Week. Photographer Alexander Masters, Jorge Sanchez and Cath Hunter are also sharing their meals at the Island’s restaurants as part of the scheme, which runs through February 5.
“I am quite a keen Instagrammer,” Ms Bove said. “Every day I post a photo of Bermuda to share with my friends and family, called ‘My Daily Bermuda’.
“A few times the BTA have chosen my photo to share on their page, so they were the ones who approached me to see if I was interested in eating at three different restaurants and then sharing my photos.”
The Mount Saint Agnes teacher said she was thrilled to have been asked.
“There are many people who follow the BTA account on Instagram so the fact they even considered me for it was awesome,” the 39-year-old said.
“I was planning to participate in Bermuda Restaurant Week anyway, so it’s amazing that they agreed to pay for the meal and are allowing me to share my photos with others too.”
So far Ms Bove has enjoyed a three-course dinner at Beau Rivage; next week she plans to try out the menus at Little Venice and The Newport, A Gastropub.
She had a sweet Bermuda onion soup, free range chicken with local vegetables and a chilled souffle with loquat and Bermuda gold liquor at Beau Rivage.
She took her mom as her date.
She feasted on Bermuda codfish cakes with wild fennel sauce, Bermuda mahi mahi and Bermuda loquat crème brûlée.
Ms Bove said she was really impressed with the meals.
“I love loquats and I have never had that kind of crème brûlée before,” she said.
“It gives me ideas for my cooking that I can try to duplicate at home.
“For instance I really liked the wild fennel sauce that went with the fish cakes. Whenever I go on my walk on the South Shore I always see wild fennel. Now I’ll know what to do with it. It was definitely an interesting combination.”
Ms Bove was born and raised in Venezuela, but says her love of food comes from her Italian heritage.
Since moving to Bermuda eight years ago, she has joined a monthly cooking club and her passion for unique food has continued to grow.
Photography, however, is a little more of a challenge.
She uses a single lens reflex camera as well as her phone. It takes her between four and six shots of each dish to get the perfect picture to post on Instagram.
“There’s definitely pressure because they are inviting you to have dinner and you have to make sure the photos are good so that people will say ‘I really want to try that dish’,” Ms Bove said. “I had to remind my mom to stop eating so I could take the photos first.
“It was hard because the photos have to convey the message of how good the food was.”
She hopes her social media posts will encourage others to take part in Bermuda Restaurant Week 2015.
“The prices, even if I had to pay myself, are really affordable and it’s important to support more of the local restaurants,” she said.
Forty-two of the Island’s restaurants are taking part in the scheme. Three-course menu options are available for between $29 and $49 per person.
For more information visit www.gotobermuda.com/restaurantweeks2015/