Trying to decide on things to do in a city like Melbourne, you can spend hours browsing and still not make a decision. That’s where Ping curators come into play to cut through the noise.
Hey Siobhan! You’re kicking goals on Instagram... what does a typical day look like for you?
"I get up between 5 and 6am, and my commute to work is where I do most of my Instagramming. Weekends are usually brunch, photo editing and locking in collabs for next week. I also do a lot on the fly."
You recently returned from a trip to the USA, what did you get up to? How do you start exploring a new place when you're travelling?
"I was over there for my best mate’s wedding in Vegas, and a lot of eating and drinking! My husband is American, so we’ve got a few friends over there who guided us around. With new places l always ask the staff for recommendations, because they know what’s good. Some people are like 'life’s too short to eat a bad dish'... but you can’t win ‘em all, try new things!"
"I always ask the staff for recommendations, because they know what's good"
Let’s say a friend from out of town is visiting for one day only, and you want to treat them to a guided tour of Melbourne. What would that day look like from morning through to night?
"In the morning we’d get breakfast at Monroe in Richmond, which is a fun suburb to wander around. Then a walking tour through the city to soak up Melbourne’s culture. I like eating little bits from different places, like the Mushroom Toastie from Belleville. OMG it's so good.
After that, either Section 8 or Whitehart. In the evening, Belle’s Hot Chicken. Then later, Beneath Driver Lane for their Reuben. For a late night, Boney’s always good fun, or Spleen, or New Gold Mountain."
"Then a walking tour through the city to soak up Melbourne's culture"
Your Instagram profile is an amazing source of places-to-go and things-to-eat... sometimes the hardest part is deciding where to go! How do you decide?
"Thanks! When I moved to Melbourne I started earmarking places, it became a huge list, it got out of hand!
I’m fortunate in the company I keep, someone’s always gonna make a good suggestion. People tend to recommend dishes more than places. Everyone knows I love a Reuben sandwich, so a sure thing like that will get me anywhere. I like to spread the love around and try new places."
Can you tell us about some of your favourite dishes in Melbourne?
"For breakfast definitely the banana roti from Monroe, with banana mascarpone on top, the perfect balance of sweet and savoury. Beautiful. Also the Golden Gaytime Panna Cotta from Bentwood in Fitzroy. I love the butter chicken from Atta.
I always get asked about my favourite burger, and it’s the Mississippi Southern Fried from Hello Sam. For a beef burger I’d go to Entrecôte. I love the steak frites there, and their burgers are made using the same steak."
"Instead of spending 20 minutes researching where you're going to go for dinner... bang, it's right there!"
Who are your biggest personal influences? Who or what inspired you to do what you’re doing now?
"Food wise, Anthony Bourdain, amazing guy. He made all types of food accessible, from the best kitchens in the world to street food. A sad loss.
I also have huge respect for any chef in Melbourne because it’s so competitive; they constantly reinvent themselves and I’m inspired by them. Food aside, definitely Dwayne Johnson. Everyone should be more like Dwayne."
What might you say to someone who’s considering using Ping?
"I love that it’s driven by foodies. Pick curators who you share tastes with, see where they’re going. Instead of spending 20 minutes researching where you’re going to go for dinner… bang, it’s right there!"
Keep up with Siobhan's adventures on Instagram: @melbtomouth