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#DigitalDining was a launch event for as well as a knowledge sharing event for food, restaurant and social media professionals in London. The event was organised by digital agency DigitalBinx and included presentations from Mark Jankel of Street Kitchen, Mecca Ibrahim of Great British Chefs and Jeanne Horack-Druiff of and live performances by musicians Ilona, Alex Bay and Andie Measure.

1 Notes

The NickThat #digitaldining event held at Degree Art was a huge success, the evening was a sensory explosion of food, wine, music and art and great company.

A huge thanks to our speakers Gemma Phelan from DigitalBinx presenting the aims and the ethos of the NickThat platform. Next up were our 3 guest speakers Mark Jankel Founder of Steet Kitchen, Jean Horak-Druiff, Blogger at and Mecca Ibrahim Head of Social Media at Great British Chefs.

Great wine and tasty cupcakes were provided by Theatre of Wine and Violet Cakes, both of which were thoroughly enjoyed by our guests.

Here are some shots from the evening taken by the lovely Kate Hook.



In this piece, Carrie May from DegreeArt has beautifully portrayed the interaction between Chefs, Diners and the People we help (in different parts of the world) via Nickthat. Through our common love for food, these acts of kindness are enabled.

“ loans 40% proceedings from Restaurants to local farmers and small enterprises worldwide.

By simply eating out at one of our restaurants via, you are inadvertently helping to improve the living conditions of others.

More importantly, no one actually pays a premium in this transaction. Win-Win-Win”

It was always our aim to build a ‘for-profit’ (proudly) business which has a strong philanthropic element built in from the onset. We believe that the magnitude of social impact needn’t correlate with the size of the business. A big heart trumps a big corporation any day.

At the same time, we wanted to make sure that no-one ever has to pay a premium to support what we believe in. The value of charity is intrinsically woven into’s value chain.

Happy ‘Nick-picking’!


I had the pleasure of hearing John Bird speak at a Virgin Unite summit in May 2012 and most recently at TheHub Westminster during the launch of ‘Answers from Big Issue’

Did you know that giving loose change to Big Issue Vendors actually undermines the fantastic work Big Issue Foundation is doing?

Borrowing the nation’s (in)famous pet’s favourite catchphrase: 

Buying a Big Issue magazine is an economic transaction: 
You purchase a magazine with quality content for the fair value of £2.50, 
Of which, 
£1.25 goes into designing, editing and printing the magazines (and other costs) 
£1.25 is pocketed by the vendor who assumes the role of Distributor of the magazine. 

Vendors are NOT looking for small change, their JOB is to sell you their product. 
You won’t necessarily go to your off licence and not take what you’ve lawfully purchase would you?

In essence, Big Issue vendors are ‘Enablers’ of good content to reach the public. 
Some might even argue that they hold an infinitely more noble role in society than those who’s job is to safeguard our wealth.

However, this blog post is not about my views on bankers or my fondness for Comparethemeerkats(or markets I can’t be sure) commercials.

I want to share my experience at the launch of ‘Answers from Big Issue’ - A refreshing online magazine. 

We are so accustomed to reading about what’s Wrong with the world. 
All the tragedies, all the disasters, all the unsavoury financial alarms, all the social problems, all the so-called ‘News’.

'Answers From Big Issue' focuses on the opposite things, the positive stuff.

The latest issue brought a tear to my eye, the inspiring stories about selfless individuals in society who are running groups, enterprises helping those in need.

Instead of the conventional method of shining the spotlight on an ugly problem and confront you to acknowledge it. 
We can instead shed light on the good things people are doing to inspire us to join their quest.

I think the latter method appeals to the better nature of people. 
As much as a cynic the media has turned me, I was soften by the multitude of heartwarming stories as I flipped through the magazine on my iPad touchscreen (because using a mouse is so 2001)

Even a cynic has an undoubtedly good nature.

Answers from Big Issue: 
Technology is a testament to the flux of changes our generation has experienced. 
21 years ago Big Issue printed paper magazines and equipped homeless people with sales skills to become vendors/distributors.

In 2012, they are equipping Vendors with social media/reporting skills to be correspondents for Online content.

John Bird’s value of helping those who want to help themselves resonated deeply with me. 
I am in agreement with him that the act of charity is more than just sparing some change from my pocket on my way home. 
In fact, it may encourage perverse incentives and one-sided dependency. 
The brief feeling of superiority or empowerment is unjustified as you are not addressing the root of the problem.

If you feel charitable today, 
Find the nearest person who WANT to better their living conditions and offer them a helping hand….


Appleyard studios on 20/11/2012

I am a firm believer that if you do good for your community, your community will help you thrive, it is precisely for this reason we visited Appleyard studios, run by Jeff Topp who subscribes to the belief of nurturing emerging artists from South England through a beautiful recording studio near Robertsbridge.

The studio has an extremely ‘Artsy and creative’ vibe to it, it is a mere 96minutes from Central London and upon arriving at the entrance of the studio, you can’t help but feel in awe of the vast openness around you. The serenity and calm also carries a hint of rock n roll once you step into the studio.

It is precisely studios like Appleyard which brings out the best in musicians, Alex and Andie had an outstanding session and magnificent level of output during the day. 

If I had half the talent Andie or Alex possesses, appleyard would be to me what Necker Island is to Sir Richard Branson.

Alex Bay and Andie Measure are the most talented musicians I ever had the privilege to meet and work with. Together with Jeff Topp, I am honoured to be able to call them my friends who are on a similar quest to bring joy and inspiration to other people, one way or another.

I envisage us making the short excursion to this studio a lot more in the future. Personally, this is a place where I can be at peace and contemplate on ways to become a better version of myself.

Watch this space for the tracks from the day, or come by for #DigitalDining on 6th December to see Andie and Alex live at DegreeArt’s Gallery on Vyner Street London.


Thank you Tom Stoddart - An amazing Director and a consummate professional who initiated us into the Muse - ‘Animals’ video for their world tour 2012/13.

@ 1:15

@ 2:19

Thank you for having us Tom!


Out of Silence came your voice

15/11/2012@Gilrays with Alex Bay and Ilona.

Behind the stage, half drunk whisky.

Crystal voice, worn out piano keys

Perfection in the notes

Consistence in the tone


hear determination


here’s someone driven

Melody of talent

with flawless execution.

A bright star in the creation.

Meet Ilona -