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Interview with Rory Brown | Charleston, SC Native | Food Critic

After spending the first 40 years of his life in the United States, Rory Brown decided to focus on the quality of life and began living internationally. He now spends his time in Charleston, South Carolina, Sydney, Australia, Lake Como, Italy, and Kauai, Hawaii. His appreciation for simple health food that embraces local traditions of excellence has earned him credit among farm-to-table communities everywhere he goes. Rory Brown began his career as a technologist and has always focused on healthy lifestyle choices. His well-researched lifestyle writing has increasingly focused on living life to the fullest each day throughout the world.

Can you tell us a story about what brought you to this specific career path?

I was walking down Market Street in Charleston, SC just after I had dinner at Peninsula Grill. I was in deep contemplation of the sweet harmony the chef produced by the spices and herbs used to make my entree. It was that night I decided to become a food critic and the very next day I started my blog to share my culinary adventures with the world. My enthusiasm for food and the scientific reasoning behind the use of ingredients and their effects on healthy living fuel my writing and my pursuit of exploring the world to find the best each region has to offer.

Can you share the most interesting story that happened to you since you started your company?

I believe that life is lived in pursuit of purpose and passion as well as for conquering your fears. After buying my home in Kauai, Hawaii, I decided to rise above my fear of scuba diving in the ocean at night. I went on this excursion with a couple of local divers. We had lights underwater, and though I was nervous for the initial couple of minutes, I was immediately in awe of the underwater life around me. I took it all in and loved every moment of being in the depths of the Pacific. We were just about to surface when all of a sudden, we noticed that there was a school of manta rays swimming towards us. It was honestly one of the scariest times of my life, but swimming with manta rays ended up being one of the most magical things in the world and the icing on the cake that night.

Can you share a story about the funniest mistake you made when you were first starting? Can you tell us what lesson you learned from that?

When I first started my blog, I was really technical in my style of writing. I was packed with information in my mind, and I wanted to share my entire knowledge-base with my readers and subscribers. The funniest thing I ever did was mention the scientific name and origination of morels (which are a delicacy in the mushroom family). I went into exhaustive detail about morels when I realized, a page into writing about their genus, that nobody really needed to know that much information about a mushroom. I realized that I had to balance the scientific relevance of a particular ingredient with the actual physical properties of its taste and what it added to the dish. I became a lot better with incorporating both the factual and the palpable as my food adventures and writing progressed, but in the beginning, it was a comical struggle for sure.

What do you think makes your company stand out? Can you share a story?

My company is one of a kind because the perception I have with taste is one of a kind as is my quest to balance delicious food with a healthy lifestyle. I started my blog with an overwhelming passion for wanting to bring good food and its origins home to people around the world. I have homes in Charleston, Kauai, Sydney, and Lake Como and I travel between my homes to make sure I keep my taste buds aware and my writing nuanced. With the advent of the internet, our world is certainly becoming more accessible, and my writing does its part to share the sights, smells, and tastes of the world with our readers.

Which tips would you recommend to your colleagues in your industry to help them to thrive and not “burn out”?

Thriving in our industry takes a lot of determination and hard work. I would encourage my colleagues to be mindful of the rapidly changing methods of cooking and how they are being applied to cuisines. I would encourage them to be thirsty for information and hungry to help people make food decisions that are well thought out.

None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story?

I will forever be grateful to my mom who has been a guiding light throughout my life. When I first told her about my idea to start my company and establish a blog, she told me that she saw the spark in my eyes and the joy in my voice when I talked about it and that she was behind me a hundred percent. Every great business idea needs someone to believe in it and someone else to back up its believer. 

How have you used your success to bring goodness to the world? 

I try to use my success to bring goodness into the world on a daily basis. The motivation for my work is rooted deeply in trying to help people from all over the world understand cuisine that is not local to them. I write about my experiences with food so that I can share what I have learned with my readers and hopefully produce a little bit of happiness or curiosity in their day.

 

 

Do you have a favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Can you share a story of how that was relevant to you in your life?

“Shortcuts make long delays.” – J.R.R. Tolkien, The Fellowship of the Ring

This is one of my all-time favorite quotes and one that I cherish in my life. I was in middle school when I first came across this quote, and it changed my life. I was trying to come up with a science project for school, and I came up with the idea that would test the types of soil that would grow the best carrots. I bought two different kinds of soil rather than the recommended six variants of soil to grow the carrots in. Suffice it to say that I did not do very well in the science fair and instead, had to come up with a whole new project altogether. Shortly after the science fair ended, I came across the Tolkien quote, and since then, I have avoided taking shortcuts.

What are your “5 things I wish someone told me before I started my company” and why. Please share a story or example for each.

1.    You won’t have blog visitors instantly.

2.    You will have hurdles with writing some days.

3.    Taking a break from writing is okay.

4.    Do not rush anything.

5.    Stay true to who you are.

You are a person of great influence. If you could start a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger.

A movement that I would love to trigger is a collective movement towards gardening in the home. I know that communal gardens are popping up in neighborhoods and that some people certainly do garden in their backyards, but I would love to take that movement a little further. Wouldn’t it be amazing to see gardens on windowsills or garden boxes in balconies or a portion of a backyard dedicated to growing herbs and vegetables? If everyone, regardless of whether they live in an urban atmosphere or suburbia, started to grow something on their own, I think conscious eating would be on the rise as well. I believe people would take more pride in their food choices and healthier eating would be more achievable for a larger population. 

Founder & Editor-In-Chief of Disrupt Magazine Tony Delgado, is a Puerto Rican American software developer, businessman, activist and philanthropist. Delgado is also the host of the Disrupt Podcast where he interviews the most disruptive business owners, leaders and change makers in the world. Tony Delgado is best known as the founder, and chief executive officer of The Disrupt Foundation, a social impact movement to grow Puerto Rico’s technology ecosystem and host of the semi-annual Disrupt Puerto Rico Conference. Tony Delgado has also helped mentor thousands of students, create financial freedom, all from the comfort of his home in San Juan, Puerto Rico.

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