Check out The Food Lens - An Online Guide to Eating and Drinking in Greater Boston

 

Boston is home to the RedSox, American history, shopping but most importantly an incredible food scene! There are a number of great restaurants that spread across the city, but sometimes it can be overwhelming to find one that fits your interest. We have all been through the struggle of choosing the perfect dining destination. Sometimes your parents are coming to visit and you want to pick somewhere to escape the dull dining hall food. Sometimes you are on the hunt for the photo-worthy brunch to beef up your Instagram. Sometimes you are heading home for the holidays and need to grab a quick, yummy bite by the airport or train station. Luckily, I have found the perfect solution for you. To solve all of your search struggles, check out The Food Lens!

The Food Lens is an online guide to eating and drinking in the Greater Boston Area. The website is curated and allows culinary curious viewers to discover or rediscover the dining scene. The website was launched in the spring of 2017 by Molly Ford and Sarah Jesup. These two founders met at BU in 2008 and they started by featuring search tabs on their site like “Parents in Town,” “Late Night” and “Hangover Food” and guides that range from “Fenway’s Finest” to “Juice Bars.” These articles made them the ideal resource for students who are looking for a certain dining experience.

 

What’s different about the Food Lens is that on their website they have a tab called “Spots” and this is where the featured restaurants are located. However, these Spots have undergone a rigorous vetting process. Ford, Jesup, and their writers visit each Spot multiple times for different meals but they never share their purpose and never accept payment or trade for the coverage. This vetting process allows for a raw review and results in a comprehensive list of restaurants that enables readers to dine like an informed insider.

 

Their website is clean, modern and easy to navigate. Each Spot features an excerpt about the restaurant and dining experience, along with insider tips and the must-haves that the restaurant has to offer. The website also provides the location and the price range of the place, that way you can easily sift through what you are looking for. Not to mention, the photos that are included in each feature are exquisite and leave the reader wishing they could be at that spot immediately, eating the mouthwatering food. Also, if you aren’t looking for a specific restaurant but are, instead, craving a particular kind of food like Burritos, click on the “Guides” section and there you have it at the click of your mouse; a list of all the best burritos in Boston. Under the “Eat” tab they do a “Can't-Miss Dish” for each month, which includes individual items from menus that you obviously cannot miss. But maybe you aren’t looking for food but good cocktails and wine instead, well guess who has you covered? Yup! The Food Lens because they also feature drinks with the best spots, guides, and even recipes! YUM. Just by exploring their website you can tell how dedicated the founders are to making their page look unique and detailed. Every viewer who comes across the Food Lens will end up drooling and finding their next restaurant location.

 

 

Here is our Q/A with founders Molly and Sarah:

1.    Where did you develop your interest in food?
  • Our love for food definitely goes hand in hand with our love for travel – those were the two main factors that initially forged our friendship. We’ve always enjoyed traveling and experiencing each place we visit through food. Every trip we take, we’re always planning everything around where we’ll be eating! Food really speaks to different cultures and is such an important way of exploring and bringing people together. Plus, it’s always fun giving friends and family recommendations for where to eat/drink when they go to the same place. There’s no better feeling than recommending the perfect spot and making someone’s trip unforgettable.

 

2.    When did you realize it could actually be a business?
  • Here in Boston, we found that there were so many people out there that looked at food the same way that we did. However, we didn't feel like there was a reliable resource that properly identified the most authentic dining experiences the city has to offer. We felt like we could provide this honest and knowledgeable information, since we've eaten our way through the city over the last decade. The Food Lens works because of the content it features and - most importantly - how that content is organized. Our site is easy to manage and provides our readers with informative pieces, rather than typical reviews.

 

3.    What does your typical day look like?
  • Every day is pretty different for us, which we enjoy because it keeps us on our toes. We spend a great deal of time on our computers, making sure everything is running smoothly on the back end of our site. We have built an amazing team of like minded food and drink enthusiasts who help us turn out content. We're also regularly shooting (and of course eating) at restaurants around the city.

 

4.    How do you decide on restaurants to review?
  • We look for "Spots" that distinctively represent Bostonian dining, from casual holes-in-the-wall to destination restaurants worthy of the most special occasions. We visit each restaurant we feature multiple times and eat our way through the majority of the menu to ensure quality and consistency.

 

5.    Have you ever gone to restaurants that you wanted to review but didn’t like?
  • Our process is rigorous and honest – we never share our purpose or accept payment or trade for the coverage. If we feel that a restaurant doesn’t fit into our selective list of “Spots” we won’t add it to the site, regardless of how popular it may be or how much we may have wanted to like it. We make a point to not write anything negative on The Food Lens.

 

6.    How many years in the making is this idea?
  • We met as undergrads at BU in 2008, and began talking about the initial idea in 2012. We actively began pursuing it in 2015 and launched the site in the Spring of 2017.

 

7.    What advice do you have for readers interested in this industry (food critique, food blogging)
  • Always follow your instincts regardless of what others might tell you. You may find yourself wondering what you’ve gotten yourself into, but don’t let others discourage you. Life is too short to not enjoy what you do for a living and there's no better feeling than creating something that is truly yours.

 

Make sure to check them out on their instagram @thefoodlens and take a look at their website here: https://www.thefoodlens.com/

 

Sources:

https://pxhere.com/en/photo/1400207

https://www.thefoodlens.com/uploads/2016/10/kieraslyephotography-4726.jpg