EatWith platform connects hosts to dinner guests

Global Business

The holidays often consist of meals with friends, family and familiar faces. However, some of the most unique experiences can come from dining with strangers. One California-based startup, EatWith, helps arrange people, homes and cooks in this unique fashion. CCTV America’s Mark Niu reported the story from San Francisco, California.

Chocolate maker Arcelia Gallardo hosted six guests for dinner. That dinner was the very first time she met each of them. This was possible through the use of the dinner party platform, EatWith.

“I am able to use the resources that I already have….so I get to set my menu, I get to approve who comes to the dinner,” Gallardo said.  “I like that I get to create a menu that doesn’t exist. There is no chocolate menu around at the moment. I’m also able to make an earnings from the comfort of my home.”

EatWith app connects hosts to dinner guests

The holidays often consist of meals with friends, family and familiar faces. However, some of the most unique experiences can come from dining with strangers. One California-based startup, EatWith, helps arrange people, homes and cooks in this unique fashion. CCTV America's Mark Niu reported the story from San Francisco, California.

Gallardo has made anywhere from $200-$400 a night hosting dinner parties through EatWith. The startup began in Israel and Barcelona, and is now headquartered in San Francisco.

Co-Founder Guy Michlin got the idea after he fell into tourist traps in Greece, but then experienced a dinner at a local Greek family’s home.

” [It was] very authentic home cooked Greek food,” Michlin explained. “The warmth of the family and the fact that they gave us a window to what was going on in Greece and gave us tips on what to do during the rest of the trip all those things you couldn’t get in a restaurant.”

EatWith keeps its site ad-free and primarily makes money by taking a 13 percent commission of the meal fees. The startup carefully vets hosts, only accepting around 4 percent of applicants.
“A restaurant alone is not really nice. Here I’m eating with people, eating delicious dishes, so it’s amazing,” EatWith User Viviana Cediel said.

EatWith does have the challenge of adapting to each city’s home cooking regulations and continually working on insurance policies to cover guests. Regardless, EatWith dinners are now being held in more than 30 countries and 162 cities around the world.