This weeks Behind the Brand focuses on the lovely Rachel Irvine , I have featured Rachels fabulous Deli which has since relocated to Cape Quarter and I am priviledged to say that Rachel is super generous and has sponsored one of our blogger meets too ...

MEET RACHEL IRVINE OF BEDOUIN DELI


Please share a little about yourself and what inspired you to create this brand?
I run a PR Company, and I’ve been in the world of media for many years. What inspired the idea of Bedouin was a meeting of fate. I met Cape Town a woman who got married and moved to a small town on the border of Syria and Iraq with her new husband, she couldn’t speak the language and being a city girl she had no idea of how to blend in with the culture, so what she learnt to do was cook.
Food is a universal language, and part of what the bedouin women taught her to do was make labneh. It’s the recipe she brought to Cape Town when she moved back here and it’s the traditional Bedouin recipe that we now use in the restaurant. It all started with the cheese; the rest of it sprung from there.


How would you describe your brand in a nutshell?
Bedouin is all about the labneh, the recipe is authentic, the cheese is handmade and it’s in just about everything we prepare at our deli, it also forms the basis of our retail range. It’s available in pepper, chilli, mint, garlic and original. We also bottle labnehdews, which are piquant peppers stuffed with our original labneh cheese, preservative free chilli jam and a range of natural Cape honey.

What would you consider to be unique about your brand? 
Every step of our cheese making process is done by hand, from the initial preparation, to rolling the balls to labeling the bottles. Our deli range is entirely preservative free besides natural ingredients that have been used for this purpose for centuries, like salt oil and vinegar. This means everything packs a flavour punch with no chemical additives.

How many stores/branches do you have and where are they located? 
Right now we have one branch, which we’ve recently moved from Woodstock to Cape Quarter Lifestyle Village.

What ‘piece of advice’ would you most like to share with people considering a start -up business?
Start small. There is nothing more disappointing than starting up a business and going too big and it fails abysmally because you aimed too high too fast. Understand what you are trying to bring to the market and implement your ideas step-by-step. Rather have a small mishap that you can fix and retain the business than a monumental fail that makes you lose everything.


The challenge as a business is to stay authentic and true to your brand, how do you achieve this? 
I think that growth can easily make you lose sight of where you started. We started as a small Deli that could seat maybe 20 people, and have now moved to a restaurant that can very comfortably seat more than 60 people, which means things are faster and busier. But the nature of our food, because it is handmade means that we have to stay authentic and it grounds us no matter how much we grow.

What do you love most about being an entrepreneur? 
 Being an entrepreneur allows you to know your brand intimately and major decisions that will help improve your brand can immediately be implemented by you, instead of having to go through the chain for a simple yes.

What has your journey so far taught you {about yourself or in general}? Has it changed your life in any way?

The most fundamental thing I have learnt in life since starting up the business is balance, and having to divide my time equally between my PR Company and the Deli. Balance is absolutely essential to survival, and not only surviving, but also surviving successfully.

How does the future look as far as ‘dreams and visions’ for your brand? 
Well, we’re looking into expanding the brand, expanding the range of products we make and sell. Right now the future is looking extremely bright.





For more info:
Website: www.bedouinfoods.co.za
Online Store/Stockists: www.bedouinfoods.co.za
Facebook : www.facebook.com/BedouinDeli 
Twitter: www.twitter.com/BedouinDeli
Instagram: @bedouindeli





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