French food writer creates App to put Taiwan’s ancient capital Tainan on the private food map

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France is known as the land of gastronomy, with foie gras, truffles, macarons, baguettes, wine, and champagne. The list goes on and on. As Jean Anthelme Brillat-Savarin, an 18th-century French lawyer and famous gourmet, once said, “Tell me what you eat, and I’ll know what kind of person you are.” With the rapid advancement of technology, the French have also digitized their food maps.

Anne Coppin is a Paris-based food writer who is passionate about traveling the world in search of cuisines from different cultures. Coppin tells us that in 2016 she published HAPPY WORLD FOOD, a book of recipes she brought back from her travels, and she published FOOD TROTTER THAILAND in 2018, a culinary travel guide to a country she hoped to discover through cooking. In addition, Coppin also collaborates with food guides such as FOODING or ORGYNESS.

Coppin told Eat News, “I have always found that it was complicated when you go on a trip to sort through all the recommendations that are disseminated on the web between food blogs, specialized magazines, printed guides, mobile applications: I often find that the information is either outdated or unreliable so I wanted to create a mobile App called Deliciously that is selective, eclectic, global and original at the same time.”

Photo: Anne Coppin

According to an official press release, Deliciously is a brand new app created by Anne Coppin, a food explorer. The App hopes to recommend the addresses of her secret addresses to eat or drink with a geolocation system. Interestingly, according to Deliciously, the latest places to eat include Tainan, Taiwan’s ancient capital. Coppin told us, “Tainan is one of the most beautiful discoveries I have made over the past 10 years. Somehow the Deliciously App arrived, with my desire, after my trip to Taiwan, to share the gems I had discovered.”

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In the early 17th century, the Dutch East India Company came to Tainan to trade with China and Japan and established Taiwan’s first town. Since then, Tainan has been Taiwan’s capital under the Kingdom of Tungning and the Qing Dynasty. At the end of the Qing Dynasty, the political and economic center was moved to Taipei. Since then, under the Japanese Empire and Republic of China rule, Taiwan has made every effort to develop the north of the country, leaving Tainan in Southern Taiwan to diminish in importance gradually. However, it still maintains its status as the cultural center.

Coppin told us that the Deliciously App, therefore, is aimed at both tourists and travelers and locals. That’s why they translated the App into Mandarin. “It is Wei-Ting Hung, a student who was doing a thesis on The influence of Taiwanese gastronomy in the world who completely translated the App into Mandarin, and for us, it’s a real honor!” Tainan was a massive crush for her. She continued, “I liked its cuisine, its atmosphere, and its softness. Soon, of course, there will be Taipei which will be released in the App. By the way, we are looking for contributors, people who would agree to share their favorite addresses.”

Photo: Anne Coppin

The Deliciously App is not open for the general public to rate restaurants. Coppin believes that mass reviews can be counterintuitive; some places, while well-reviewed, are not genuine and even downright touristy and do not meet our criteria. Other addresses are entirely unknown, frequented only by regulars, and yet they provide unforgettable experiences. So rather than going into the rating system, we preferred to offer our reliable and original selection. “So rather than going into the rating system, we preferred to offer our reliable and original selection.”

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Photo: Anne Coppin

As for what Deliciously will use to recommend local cuisine, Coppin says, “Our in-house team will cross different online sources to make an initial selection of the tables that seem relevant to us, then our local experts which we call contributors and who are on-site will validate the different addresses for us according to their research, their taste and the hidden gems that can be found there.”

Photo: Anne Coppin

We asked her, in light of the flourishing of online placement marketing in recent years, if Deliciously will take over the advertising of restaurants for-profit and have their restaurants appear in your App and receive positive reviews in the future? Coppin gave a negative answer, “They will never pay, which guarantees our complete freedom of choice. The App is also free for users. Local partners will sponsor the ads from their area, which allows us to keep the App 100% free.”

Coppin didn’t have a smooth start with Deliciously, as the first tech team she worked with made the wrong choice, and they had to start from scratch. “I also teamed up at the start with the wrong person with whom I had to separate, and it was quite painful,” Coppin said.

However, Deliciously is now a team of 9 very passionate and motivated people. It successfully developed the Android and iPhone versions, and on Google Play and App Store, users can recommend their favorite restaurants directly through the App.

As Coppin said, “Whether abroad or in my city, all day long I want to be able to locate around me a good restaurant, a café to work for a few hours or a nice bar to end the evening.”

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Fausto Chou is a Taiwanese journalist. He has been the executive editor of the Eat News since June, 2020. He previously worked for the Eastern Television (ETTV) and Formosa Television (FTV) as a journalist.

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Eat News is a Taiwanese digital media, analyzes current events and issues through column articles, videos, visual aid, and exclusive interviews.

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