Fresh Faces :: Cara Greenstein

Well, if you can believe it, I’m back! I know it’s been a whopping two months since my last post, and I know in said last post I spent the first few paragraphs with a similar apologetic start, but as I’m sure you all know sometimes life gets in the way of doing what you want. If only there were a few extra hours in the day…or I didn’t need to sleep, ever…

But until then, you’ll have to (hopefully) be understanding and know that even when I’m not writing on One Fine Day, I’m thinking about it. So at least there’s that.

And also, I’m coming back with an exciting new series called Fresh Faces. Over the last several years, I’ve gotten to know so many young twenty-somethings doing all these amazing things both in their professional and personal lives that deserve a little extra attention. Each month, I’ll be introducing you to another Fresh Face in their respective area. Some are my friends. Some are people I’ve admired greatly. All are awesome.

With that, I’m beyond thrilled to introduce y’all to my very first Fresh Face, Cara Greenstein. I met Cara four years ago when she joined my sorority as a freshman at UT. While in school Cara began her blog, Caramelized, which has become a wildly successful food blog (Caramelized was recently selected as one of the top Austin food blogs by the Austin Chronicle), and one of my go-tos for eye-catching recipes or unique culinary hot spots.

I talked to Cara about her blog, her experience in the food scene, and her plans for the future:

Cara Greenstein Caramelized

When and why did you get started writing Caramelized?
I launched Caramelized (a play-on word of my name) on Thanksgiving Day 2012 as a creative outlet for my passions of writing and all things food. Since I was a student at the time, an introductory public relations course introduced me to the world of blogging — I was hooked from that moment on.
Tell us a little bit about the blog.
Caramelized celebrates and elevates everyday foodie experiences in a personable and approachable fashion. Whether a review of my favorite Paris restaurant, a conversation with a Hollywood actress on her foodieness, or a crafted recipe in my apartment, there is always a story to share in a relaxed, engaging style. Additionally, the new layout of the blog is a metaphor for a fresh breath of air with clean lines, vivid photographs and easy-to-access categories. I have loved turning Caramelized into a true reflection of my positive self expression while simultaneously engaging a supportive audience!
Was this what you thought you would be doing when you were 10 years old?
Blogging? Not exactly. Cooking? Absolutely. As the first child, I took babysitting my younger siblings to a whole new level — we would play “pretend cooking show” in the kitchen with a few Rachael Ray and Emeril phrases thrown around here and there. Food Network was my channel of choice from a very early age.
Do you see this being your future? If not, what do you see yourself doing in 5 years?
I say yes, simply because the food scene is so fascinating. From online to television to print, food is being celebrated constantly in so many forms and fashions. My dream jobs vary between my own food public relations firm (since I now have a PR degree under my belt) and my own Food Network show. Crossing off my go-to restaurant list for the rest of my life would be ideal, too. Who knows where Caramelized will take me; but in the meantime, I am very content writing about and sharing my passions with those around me.
What’s one can’t miss Austin restaurant?
NO VA Kitchen + Bar. The new hot spot has quickly become the icon of the whimsical and authentic Rainey Street. Chef Sorenson’s brilliance and boldness in the kitchen shows through every single dish, from tamale-style gnocchi to a unique ABC flatbread pizza (ABC = avocado, house bacon, and chicken confit). The craft cocktails cannot be beat, and the vibe is perfect for a large party gathering, happy hour on the patio with friends, or an intimate date night.
What advice do you have to give to anyone looking to get into food blogging, or blogging of any other kind?
While this does not pertain strictly to blogging, connections are everything, especially in the food scene. Introduce yourself and your blog to every single foodie, chef, hostess, or fellow diner who sees you snapping away photos with your iPhone from across the bar. Don’t be afraid! These natural encounters — though intimidating at first — will quickly lead you to momentous opportunities that will teach you how to distinguish your voice while simultaneously complementing others’. On that note, I also believe collaboration is key to increasing both the scope and audience of your blog. Whether a shared social media campaign for a local restaurant or a creative series with a California food stylist, the possibilities are absolutely endless. And it doesn’t hurt to try. So what if one person unfollows you on Twitter — you’ve gained a new tool that will guide you further in the long run!
Cara Greenstein Caramelized
If you want more of Cara, I encourage you to follow her blog Caramelized – you’ll quickly understand why I love her and her blog so much.

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