NEWBERRY — Strides from a former Newberry resident are being felt as far away as Massachusetts with the creation of a new app called Tender Food and Recipes.
Tender Food and Recipes officially launched on the App Store and Google Play store June 13 and June 24, respectively. The app allows users to scroll through images of dishes around the world, but also get the recipes for their own cooking pleasure.
Based off the Tinder app, the idea of Tender is simple — swipe right to keep and left to discard. If users are interested in what they see on the screen, they swipe right and save the recipe to their “cookbook” where they can access the recipe and its original link. If they aren’t interested, swiping left discards the recipe before scrolling to the next one.
Necco Ceresani, who lives in Boston, said he came up with the idea on his daily commute home from work last fall. The Tinder app was new at the time, he said, and as he was swiping through pictures, the thought crossed his mind.
“I wish I could do this with beautiful pictures of food, instead of selfies,” Ceresani recalled saying last year.
The app was designed by Ceresani and two of his friends, also living in Boston — Jordan Homan and Dave Blumenfeld. The three met as freshman roommates at the College of Charleston in 2008.
Ceresani said the three grew close over the four years they lived together through college and he and Homan moved to Boston to join Blumenfeld in the summer of 2014.
“We had always talked about starting up a business or app together,” Ceresani said. “Jordan is a software developer, and Dave and I are both software marketers who studied international business.”
After coming up with the idea, Ceresani said he immediately thought it was a winner and got in touch with his friends, who were on board.
Over the next nine months, the three worked on the app. Homan developed the app by hand, Ceresani said, while he and Blumenfeld figured out what they wanted the app to do, how it was going to work and what kind of experience they wanted their users to have.
“The app is extremely simple,” Ceresani said.
Tender also has filter options for drinks, desserts, chicken, pork, beef, seafood, vegan and vegetarian. The cookbook takes the user back to the recipe’s original blog link, where the user can learn to cook it.
Ceresani said the feedback has been incredible since the app’s launch earlier this summer.
Although their target audience is definitely millennials, Ceresani said they are getting amazing feedback from older folks who have discovered the app. Ceresani said his mother is one of the app’s biggest users.
Ceresani said the app grew from hundreds of users to tens of thousands in less than a week, which did cause some issues.
“With so many new users, the app slowed down terribly during some of those early days,” Ceresani said. “However we have since upgraded our servers and the app itself, so we are ready for anything.”
Although Ceresani said one of their biggest missions is to get millennials excited about cooking again, Tender was created for people who love food and who are passionate about cooking.
“Anyone who has a love of food is going to enjoy Tender Food and Recipes,” Ceresani said.
Reach Elyssa Parnell at 803-276-0625, ext. 1868.