Founder Reflects on 10 Years of NJ Food Culture

Deborah Smith, Founder and Executive Editor of, looks back on 10 years of collecting recipes and highlighting restaurants across New Jersey. Deborah describes what it takes to run the hub for food news and what trends she’s seen over the years.

7/29/2017 #612






"Welcome back. If you consider yourself a foodie, you'll want to pay attention. My next guest has created a go to resource for all things food in New Jersey, she is Deborah Smith, Founder and Executive Editor of Love the name, JerseyBites. But we don't but we do. No, I know, it's our sense of humor in New Jersey. You have to have it. Right. Exactly. I think your actually born with it if your born in the state. It's just a little, a little dry. Sass. A little sassy, a little spunky, exactly all those things. You're celebrating 10 years. I know I can't believe it. This organization. Yes, 10 years this September. What have you been able to accomplish in 10 years? Talk about what the site is, the website, the out reach. What it is and what your providing to people in New Jersey. It didn't start with much of an idea of any kind. It was my own private little blog that was going to post some recipes on and it was just going to be for family and friends. And then is just started to attract people and attract interest and when I came up with the name JerseyBites. Because it really didn't have a name. When I came up with the name JerseyBites, I was like oh now we have a mission, right. And the mission really is to bring a spot light on all the glorious things in New Jersey surrounding food. We have amazing farms, we have five commercial fishing ports, we have fabulous restaurants and we're always ignored and sandwiched in between Philadelphia and New York. That why … even people in our own state I don't think give us our dues. They don't, they don't know enough. You know we don't spend enough time having adventures in New Jersey. And so that's what we say every weekend, it's a JerseyBites adventure. Where are we going? And of course all connected in food some way. And you yourself are very passionate about food. You've written a cookbook. Right. Right. The Jersey Shore Cookbook. We've had you on Life and Living previously to talk about that, so as a food lover and as a person smart enough to realize you could bring all of these ideas together into one place, how did you get that work out, how did you reach so many people? Well I knew I couldn't do it by myself. I have two small children, my children we're 6 and 9 when I started JerseyBites. And I started reaching out to other people that were, I sent letters to writing clubs, I put it out on social media which..."