• 05.24.12

Kitchensurfing: Bringing The Chef To The Kitchen

A new service lets people with cooking skills rent themselves out (or people with nice kitchens rent their space out for cooking). It’s all part of an attempt to get us to spend more time cooking together–and thinking about our meals.

Breaking bread is not just a metaphor for friendship, it’s a literal description of how people, families, nations have come together for as long as we’ve baked bread.


But it happens less and less once we leave home and start busy lives (the together part; not the eating, clearly). Kitchensurfing aims to turn that around. “Kitchensurfing is our answer to the question, “How do we get more people having better meals more often with other people?” says Wendel Davis Chris Muscarella, co-founder of Kitchensurfing in an interview with Good Food Jobs.

Dinner parties can be expensive, daunting or both. Kitchensurfing invites the chef home to the dinner party. Professional and homemade culinary all-stars can post their skills preparing home-cooked meals that probably never approach a microwave. Have a spectacular kitchen? You can even rent that out too for others’ soirees. Chefs get to bring their culinary repertoire to wherever someone is hungry and willing, while hosts can either help prepare or simply savor.

Kitchensurfing is hacking the tragedy of the commons for food. Few ways except restaurants match the millions who love to eat with the abundance of culinary talent who want to feed them. Davis Muscarella sees Kitchensurfing unleashing this potential the same way that Etsy has for homemade crafts, and Kickstarter has ignited with crowdfunding.

Will it succeed? The site is still in private beta, so we’ll have to wait and see. But the divide between the amateur chef and the professional is narrowing. Running a restaurant for hundreds of paying guests will always divide them. But cooking food for people that makes them happy will not.

About the author

Michael is a science journalist and co-founder of Publet: a platform to build digital publications that work on every device with analytics that drive the bottom line. He writes for FastCompany, The Economist, Foreign Policy and others on science, economics, and the environment.