After conquering the Masterchef kitchen in 2013, winner Kamini Pather acquired a
taste for adventure, connection and flavour which extends beyond South Africa’s
borders. In her new show Girl Eat World, the young food-obsessed Capetonian takes
to the streets of cities around the world to share local culinary experiences and mad
adventures with some equally passionate local food bloggers.
Bangkok, Tokyo, Sydney, Lima, Philadelphia, Milan, Berlin, Copenhagen, Dubai,
Johannesburg – globetrotters, eat your heart out! These are the destinations to
which Kamini Pather will travel to meet inspiring food bloggers with whom she
connected and has maintained contact for months leading up to production.
Lucky Bean Media director and Girl Eat World executive producer Chris Green
explains: “Girl Eat World is about Kamini travelling around the world to 10 food
destinations hosted by people who know those destinations best – local food
bloggers. The show is an insider’s view of a city and takes the stance that even
though people can connect via the web or digital portals, it doesn’t mean they truly
have a sense of what’s going on in the local food scene. The show is an enabler for
Kamini to do that. She’s never met the bloggers until now.’
Some of the highlights include visiting a restaurant in Copenhagen, described by
some as a porridge paradise, which serves over a hundred flavours of the breakfast
favourite. Another spot she can’t wait to explore is Berlin, where a huge immigrant
community is bringing culinary influences from their home countries into the city.
But for someone whose “food-losophy’ centres around seasonal fresh produce,
Pather is equally keen on discovering local offerings of this kind.
“My approach to cooking is more produce related – I’m the girl that goes to organic
markets and gets excited when I see gooseberries with hats on them, and then I
take them home and have no idea what to make,’ she admits. “So I’m excited to
visit some local organic markets, to see what food is actually there and what you
can do with it.’
What sets Girl Eat World apart from anything else that food fanatics are used to
seeing on TV is a focus on connection, forming relationships and sharing
“We had to choose the right people from the right places, and from the moment
they were chosen we had a lot of contact with them, so now it feels like we know
them. But when I was introduced to the Joburg blogger it was one of those
situations where you don’t know whether you should shake hands, or just say hello,’
Green points out that a show like this could never have been done 10 years ago,
when the technology wasn’t yet as advanced or widely used as it is now and says:
“I think digital media has done a lot for people who are passionate about food.
People now have a platform to publish themselves, and that for me becomes a
talking point, people sharing what they are passionate about. And food is something
that so many people are passionate about.’
“After the show (Masterchef SA 2013) ended I had a meeting with the Lucky Bean
Media team – I think before the show even ended I was already thinking: I want a
show!’ says Pather, who has kept busy as a food writer and stylist as well as a
radio host on Heart 104.9 FM since season two of the reality cooking programme
According to Green, Girl Eat World is a joint production between Pather and Lucky
Bean Media, which will provide the infrastructure, expertise and facilities needed to
deliver a slick final product with international appeal.
Following two months of research, which began in March, Pather and the Girl Eat
World team collaborated on two and a half months of pre-production and up until
Pather’s departure on 16 September, Girl Eat World has been a self-funded passion
project between the two entities. Although still in the process of negotiating with
potential broadcasters, Pather and Green are for now able to creatively work at
their own pace.
“Rather than wait for a commission from a local broadcaster, we have elected to
finance this venture ourselves, and look to licence it, both locally and
internationally. We are seeing increasing interest in South African content at
international markets, we feel South African productions maintain a very high
standard internationally and believe strongly that there is a demand for what we
can offer. It’s a significant financial risk, but with no risk there is no reward!’
Joining Pather on her delicious journey are key crew members: series director
Annalet Steenkamp, DOP James Boon, sound engineer Kenny Geraghty, production
manager Minet Williams and producer Michelle Geering, who is no stranger to on-
the-go production after working on the Tusker Twende Kazi reality show which
travelled from Kenya to London in 50 days – by road.
Armed with a Canon 5D, a Canon C300 and a compact production kit the group will
jetset around the globe for two months, all the while sending footage back to Lucky
Bean in Johannesburg where it can be edited while they are still on the road.
Green and Pather plan on taking the series to MIPCOM, an international market for
entertainment content across all platforms, which takes place in Cannes, France in
October. Where and when the world will get to experience Pather’s adventure is yet
to be confirmed and so for now, hungry fans must wait, chomping at the bit.