The creative duo and couple that is Nicole Jacobsen and Gustaf Björlin have had a long time interest both in food and working in the creative industry with production, and a few years back they decided it was time to start their own business venture – with a focus within one of their passion areas.
With a focus on telling stories within gastronomy Nicole and Gustaf together run a hybrid channel and production company called The Food Office. On their social channels (YouTube & Instagram) they present their content, adventures and all around favourite eats along their way. Let’s have a talk with them
How many places have you visited in total?
Who is even counting all the good, the bad and the ugly eats? It’s many. Gustaf’s record in eating “kroppkakor” however is 6.
How did you both get an interest in food and food content creation?
The credit goes to our moms who fed us with delicious home cooked food since day one. I (Nicole) also grew up in a restaurant environment, my mum is a chef and stepfather a restaurant owner. We spent a lot of time in the kitchen cooking together and eating out. This has influenced my interest in food. When meeting Gustaf in 2016, we both had a solid interest in food and worked in production. Gustaf as a Creative and me more operational. It’s our common interests that have escalated into what it is today.
How has food and restaurants affected you both?
It’s so much hard work that goes into creating great food and restaurants. We get inspired by the passionate people putting their hearts and soul into the food experiences. That’s the core of what we do – to amplify their voices through the lens of Badass Food Stories. When we first started our profile in 2018, it was a side hustle to share our restaurant experiences. Last year we decided to take the leap to combine our true passion for food and storytelling. With our production company we want to tell stories in gastronomy.
What is your favorite restaurant in Stockholm?
It’s impossible to choose one, but currently we really enjoy eating at Soyokaze or a bowl of beef pho at Viet Kitchen.
…and in Sweden?
Ninnis kroppkaksbod at Öland is a gem and seafood on Sweden’s west coast!
What is the best food experience you have had at a restaurant?
Fäviken in December 2018.
What is the best food you have ever eaten – and why?
Some of the most delicious food we have eaten is humble and not fancy. For each new dish you try, you have to ask yourself, in between the best and the worst you have eaten in the past – where does this rank? The list is long!
What is your ultimate go-to comfort food?
Spicy Galbi Jjim, which is a Korean beef stew, or a bowl of ramen.
What is your favorite type of kitchen in food?
We love asian cuisines, and all the varieties within their different regions. So much to explore and learn!
What do you think is missing in the food scene today?
We need to give space for more diversity in Sweden. Nothing beats an authentic meal, again, the best food is not fancy.
What is the trend in the restaurant industry you see coming in 2022?
More of an observation, but I love seeing industry professionals that have worked at top restaurants in Sweden or abroad, returning back to their hometowns in Sweden to open their own restaurants.
Have you had any crazy food travel story to share?
Can’t think of anything too crazy to be honest. We get pretty obsessive about hunting down the best eats when we are traveling. We fill our google maps with lots of places to visit, then we walk between restaurants. A special trip is five nights we had in Koreatown a few years ago, an amazing food scene and I can really recommend staying at The Line!
Your focus is equally about eating as producing stories about food. What do you enjoy most of all about storytelling?
To be able to highlight the extremely passionate and hardworking professionals in the restaurant industry.
What is your biggest challenge as food content creators?
One is the algorithm that is just getting tougher, especially if you are focusing on quality rather than quantity, which we do. Our capacity is limited. Another is copyright, people are stealing images from us on Instagram without asking, photo crediting or paying for the content. Some are even surprised that they have to pay to use our content for their own commercial and editorial purposes.
What is your favorite food story you have worked on so far – and why?
In 2020 we made a film together with the Swedish Culinary team who were competing in IKA culinary olympics. These are elite chefs competing at the highest level in culinary arts. They cook food that is not just delicious and looks like art, but is also technically challenging and cooked under time pressure. It’s really fascinating when you get to see all the hard work and collaboration to achieve this type of cooking – it’s extraordinary. This collaboration has led us to a bigger project on the same topic which we are working on now in 2022…
What are you cooking on your own at the moment?
We are currently producing a pilot episode for our first long-format film. It’s a behind-the-scenes look of a chef’s journey competing at the most iconic culinary event – Bocuse d´Or. We go inside of the life and kitchen of Sweden’s candidate, Jimmi Eriksson and his team, to explore what it takes to achieve culinary excellence. They are training for two years to compete at the grand final in Lyon.
With this film we want to provide insights into the minds of the professionals striving to be the best they can be and to do the best they can do, while also revealing the extensive challenges, hard work and collaborations.
The pilot episode will be published in September 2022 on our YouTube-channel, and used in order to sell the format but also to crowdfund for the film production of the documentary this year. Stay tuned and if interested in supporting this project, don’t hesitate to reach out to us!
5 quick ones
Street food or fine dining?
Chinese or Japanese food?
Croissant or cinnamon bun?
Lobster roll or ”räkmacka”?
American pancakes or Belgian waffles?