Macaroni cheese is a well-known comfort food and Mac n Me takes comfort in tasting and reviewing as many dishes as possible on our behalf. Set up by Splottlander Nicki, the award-winning blog goes from strength-to-strength and recently covered one of our very own local businesses.
Inksplott is delighted to present its latest interview. Introducing Mac n Me…
Inksplott: Hi Nicki, thank you for being interviewed for Inksplott. Can you tell us a little about yourself and your blog?
Nicki: Hi Inksplott! I’m Nicki and I run Cardiff’s premiere (or more accurately, only!) blog dedicated to macaroni cheese, Mac n Me, which launched in May of this year.
Inksplott: How did you get into this? Can you please tell us a little about the history of your blog and how you became involved in blogging?
Nicki: I first started blogging way back in 2006, under the name Cardiff Bites. It started with a few write ups on Myspace and ended up as the top-ranked food blog in Cardiff on Google. I was lucky enough to be asked to contribute to The Guardian’s (short-lived and much missed) Cardiff pages, Walesonline and BBC’s Olive Magazine. In 2011 I won Best Food Blogger at the Wales Blog Awards, before ‘retiring’ in 2012. After a few years in the wilderness, and after much encouragement from the blogger community in Cardiff (who are all ace, lovely people) I’ve dipped my toe in the water again.
Inksplott: And how come you’re in Splott?
Nicki: I’m originally from Port Talbot but moved to Cardiff in 2005, settling in Splott in 2013. I love that it’s got a proper community feel which is quite similar to Port Talbot – I think it must be the steelworks.
Inksplott: What’s your speciality? Why should people read your blog?
Nicki: Everyone has their comfort food, their go-to when they’re feeling ill, hungover or in need of a pick-me-up. Mine is macaroni cheese and the blog is simply my search for the ultimate dish, hopefully written with a dose of humour. It’s a mix of restaurant reviews, product reviews and, eventually, some recipes for you to try at home. I’m hoping to focus on the older, established places in Cardiff, places that are good at what they do but don’t always get the attention they deserve. Don’t worry though, I will be branching outside of the City when I get the chance, and I’m not afraid to say if I don’t like something!
Inksplott: What’s your best story since setting up the blog?
Nicki: Mac n Me was only launched in May but my biggest post so far was of local favourite, Luvly Grub. Seeing the buzz it created on social media was amazing and I’ve already had people tweet me telling me they are going to visit soon. Splott and Tremorfa get an unnecessary bad rep, so to be able to support a local business who are trying to change that image was a huge privilege.
My favourite moment from blogging is probably when Snoop Dogg tweeted me during his European tour in 2011 asking for tips on where to eat in the City – he’d definitely enjoy Luvly Grub if he came back to Cardiff!
Inksplott: Tell us a secret or something about Splott that we won’t know.
Nicki: Splott is one of those places that is full of surprises. I found out recently that Oasis Cardiff, on Splott Road, have a monthly supper club and now I can’t wait to go! Anywhere else in Cardiff would be shouting that from the rooftops but Splott just gets on with things quietly, in its own way. Maybe we need to shout louder?
Inksplott: Any exciting plans or events on the horizon?
Nicki: Macaroni is definitely having a bit of a moment, it’s everywhere and I have a long list of places and dishes I want to review in my search for the holy grail. I’ve also got a book review coming up in the next month or so and hopefully start testing some recipes ready to publish those in the new year.
Inksplott: That’s great – thank you so much for the interview and good luck with your blog! Looking forward to reading the next Mac n Me adventure!
To keep up with all the latest Mac n Me news and reviews, go to the blog here: macnmeblog.wordpress.com
You can also follow @cardiffbites on Twitter