Dave Feller hates mustard — hates it with a fiery passion. He spent years trying to wheedle out dishes with the condiment, and found that each recipe website or online cookbook fell short. So what’s an internet pro to do? Why, start his own site of course!
A former eBay and StumbleUpon executive in Silicon Valley, Feller is the founder and CEO of the recently-launched website Yummly.com. Unlike recipe aggregators and foodie websites of the past, Yummly is poised as a ground-breaking food platform: it truly understands your personal tastes and flavor preferences.
Love cilantro? Need a dessert with low-fat options? Yummly allows you to tweak more than 500,000 recipes from all over the web or upload your own to create a universal recipe box.
Haute Living gets the inside look at Feller’s own tastes about food and fun in the Bay Area:
Haute Living: What drew you to the Bay Area?
Dave Feller: The food and wine scene, the quality of life are unbeatable, and the internet industry for work (which I was already part of through work at eBay and Half.com)
HL: How would you characterize the start-up scene in San Francisco?
DF: [The scene] has a High School feel. Everyone knows everyone, lots of excitement… It’s really cool.
HL: You’ve had some great success in the tech arena. So, how does food play into your life? Are there great gadgets or other examples where food and tech mesh well?
DF: I’ve always been a foodie, especially as I learned to cook at a young age. At different points in my life, I’ve thought about opening a restaurant. But I’ve been in the tech world for the past 15 years and it was almost natural to try and think of the intersection of food and technology. The iPad is an amazing platform; many interesting applications to come!
HL: I read that you have a recent addition to the family! Congrats! What are some great activities to do with small children in the Bay Area?
DF: Yes, we have two children ages 3 and 3 months. Three great places on the Peninsula are Hidden Villa, Happy Hollow and Deer Hollow Farm.
HL: Your new website Yummly.com is an innovative recipe aggregator. What is your simple, go-to dish to cook after a long day?
DF: I love summertime foods. There’s nothing like some simply grilled corn, heirloom tomatoes, basil and mozzarella, and a rosemary beef filet. And a glass of wine, of course.
HL: When you have time to dine out, what are the best restaurants in the Bay Area?
DF: We love Redd in Yountville, Kaygetsu in Menlo Park and House in San Francisco
HL: Yummly uses personal tastes to tailor recipes to the individual user. Are there any ingredients you love? Any flavors you dislike? Where do you shop for dish ingredients?
DF: I hate mustard and mayonnaise; that’s part of the reason I created Yummly. I love the farmer’s market for inspiration and cook around what’s fresh and in-season.
HL: You have guests in town. Where would you take them for the quintessential day tour of SF or the Bay Area?
DF: Everyone wants to go to wine country, although we sometimes venture to Carmel. No matter what it involves, beautiful scenery, delicious food and great wine!
HL: Many entrepreneurs have the option of working outside the office. What is the best coffee bar or café to sit and fine-tune Yummly?
DF: We have a great coffee place near the office [in Redwood City called] The Movie Groove and Grind Coffee Bar. They hand-drip every cup of coffee.
HL: Although you’re an old pro, launching a company is certainly a stressful job. How do you choose to relax in the city?
DF: My relaxation comes with family, food, friends and fun. It’s a relatively simple formula and works every time.