The Squashed Tomato and Blogs ‘paired’ at Food & Wine Bloggers’ Club


The first Food & Wine Bloggers’ Club meeting for 2011 kicks off on Wednesday 26 January at well-known Pigalle Restaurant in Green Point, and ‘pairs’ highly knowledgeable Dusan Jelic from and Linda Harding, who Tweets and blogs as The Squashed Tomato.

Dusan comes from Serbia, yet has the most amazing command of English, and can wax lyrical about wines and their character.   He is highly regarded as a wine writer.   He has a BA in Sociology and Russian, and a Masters in Cultural Management.  He has done a number of Cape Wine Academy courses, and is continuing with a diploma course at the moment.  He has worked as a translator, and in administration.  Dusan is the Social Networking and Media Manager at and Tweets as @StefanLuka and @winecoza.

“Superb wines from Dalmatian region of Croatia started shaping my palate some twenty years ago as well as a great passion for wine which my dad always communicated to me”, says Dusan.   Dusan’s blog on expresses his special wine moments.   His goal is to publish at least one blogpost per work day.  Dusan says he works in a field which he loves and enjoys immensely.

Linda Harding is a smart young lady, having passed her matric with straight A’s, and with a Bachelor degree in Business Science, passing her majors Economics and Statistics with distinction at UCT.   She started her career in Sales, then became a Research Analyst at Frost & Sullivan, whereafter she joined market research company TNS Research Surveys.  In December she started working at New Media Publishing, as an intern, on Eat Out and Eat In, and writes Tweets, works on their Facebook updates and website, and writes features, articles and profiles.   She is also a wine ambassador to two wine cellars in Constantia.

Linda’s started her blog in May last year, and her blog name came from her favourite book as a five year old, called “The Squashed Tomato Joke Book”, which also had some recipes in it, and this is where her love for food writing was born.  The Squashed Tomato blog focuses on food, wine and fun, she writes.  She was one of top three winners in the Fairview Food Bloggers’ Challenge last year.  Linda will talk about the use of Twitter and Blogger in social media, and how to improve one’s readership, connections and gain friends.  She will also address “the lack of respect that I see on a  daily basis within the industry, particularly from reviewers”.

The Food & Wine Bloggers’ Club was formed to reflect the tremendous growth in and power of food and wine blogs in forming opinion about food, restaurants and wines.  Most bloggers do not have any formal training in blogging, and learnt from others.   The Food & Wine Bloggers’ Club aims to foster this informal training, and to serve as social media networking opportunity.

Each of the two bloggers will talk for about half an hour about their blog, and what they have learnt about blogging.  The Club will give fledgling as well as experienced bloggers the opportunity to learn from each other and to share their knowledge with others.  Attendees can ask questions, and get to know fellow bloggers.  The Club meetings are informal and fun.

Wines are brought along by the wine blogging speaker, and Dusan will share some of the wines from and from his private collection.  Seafood snacks will be served by Pigalle Restaurant.  The cost of attendance is R100. 

Food & Wine Bloggers’ Club, 26 January 18h00 – 20h00 :  Pigalle Restaurant,  57 Somerset Road, Green Point,  Cape Town – entrance is from the back of the building, next to the Primedia and Tafelberg Furnishers entrances, off Highfield Road/corner Somerset Road.   Parking costs R10.  Bookings can be made by e-mailing Chris at

Chris von Ulmenstein, Whale Cottage Portfolio:  Twitter: @WhaleCottage

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One reply

  1. Sarah S says:

    Hello Everyone!, I’m new on here and excited to be a part of the conversation .

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