FIVE MINUTES WITH...Jennifer Shoucair Weaver
Aug 31, 2018 09:54AM
● By Ashley Madonna
Images courtesy of Olive Branch Photography
Craving a specific kind of cuisine or want to try out a new restaurant? Looking for farm fresh eggs, local honey or raw goat’s milk? The Foodie Feed has got you covered. The public Facebook group is full of local suggestions provided by followers’ neighbors. And while founder and admin Jennifer Shoucair Weaver didn’t intend to create a local foodie movement, she is using her publicity background to make sure locals enjoy the best of what DFW has to offer. She’s doing it all from her farm in Southlake in the company of her two young children and sprightly pack of llamas.
I WENT TO USC … and after a brief stint in advertising, I found myself working at an entertainment PR firm. I realized very quickly that if I wanted to rise the ranks, I was going to have to be the workhorse. That was fine with me! I was young and hungry (pun intended), and so I decided to say ‘yes!’ to every opportunity that came my way at work – whether it was working a red carpet on holiday, staying past midnight at a photo shoot or riding in the back seat of an SUV with a blanket over my head acting as a decoy. Just yes, yes, yes. I’ll do it!
I MADE A GOAL TO … have my own office and assistant by the time I was 25. I hit it at 24. I was extremely fortunate to have the opportunity to work with established names like Kelly Ripa, and talents like Kate Winslet, Geoffrey Rush, John Goodman and Hank Azaria while I built my own roster. I started my own boutique PR firm at 27 with a former colleague and friend based in LA. It’s been open for a decade and is still going strong. I bowed out three years ago when my son was born…but you never know. Once my kids are in school full-time, I might want to do PR again.
I HAD NEVER SET FOOT IN TEXAS … before moving out here for my husband’s job, but I have really embraced the lifestyle. After living here for a handful of years, we literally bought a farm, and I now own llamas. I have a garden, and with it comes huge respect for our local farmers who actually manage to produce crops. On the Foodie Feed, I hope to support our local agricultural community.
WHEN I CREATED THE FOODIE FEED … I thought I’ll just throw it up on Facebook, and if some people want to join and talk food with me, awesome! But it has really taken off! This community likes to dine out, but we don’t get a lot of love from the bigger publications in Dallas and Fort Worth. We needed a more local source.
TO ACCENTUATE THE POSITIVE … I prefer to keep things PC on the board, but I’m aware that if you skew things overwhelmingly positive, you don’t get a true experience. I appreciate the comments, critiques and back and forth banter that our group offers, and I think it could be a really good resource for restaurant owners as well.
I BELIEVE IN … second chances. I worked in restaurants for almost a decade. I paid my way through college by waiting tables. I have done it all. I understand the workings of a kitchen, of the front of the house, of the back of the house. Sometimes, you just have a bad day. That’s why I believe people should try a place more than once to really form an opinion.
I WANT TO BE … a cheerleader for our community – to see small, quality businesses thrive and to encourage more to come here! I love connecting people, and what better way to do it than over good food?
FOR PEOPLE WHO WORRY ABOUT … eating out with kids I am raising two tiny gourmands who love to eat out. I try to bring activities like coloring books, or little containers of play-dough so they have something to do. They love Indian food and Middle Eastern. My son’s favorite food is sushi. My daughter has literally said, ‘Mom, I’m tired of prosciutto.’ She’s also proclaimed, ‘I want to get married in Texas so I can have beef rib from Meat You Anywhere at my wedding.’
WITH THE KIDS … we love the Dallas Arboretum. We bring a picnic – I’ll make an epic cheese plate and grab a baguette and bottle of wine from Central Market. The kids have a blast running around.
I’M DYING TO EXPAND THE GROUP. Most of us are aware of what’s right here in town. I’d love to grow our membership so that people in other DFW suburbs can write about what’s in their backyard. Will drive for good food!