Flying toasted sandwiches
Adam Grant, David McDonald and Huw Parkinson
Are your lunch choices letting you down? Do you ever look at your salad roll, sushi or bowl of boring soup and close your eyes and wish that lunch inspiration would come to you, like a delicious miracle from the sky? Jaffles delivered to you hot and cheesy by parachute, for example? Thanks to Adam, David and Huw, jaffles recently got airborne. All you need to do is keep an eye out for a 'jaffle drop', order and pay online, wait on an 'x' on a city street at a nominated time and your toasted sandwich comes floating down, on a hand made parachute, into your waiting arms and mouth.
I talked to the Jafflechutes team about flying food, inconvenient weather and plans to take Jafflechutes from Melbourne to the USA.
Where did the idea for Jafflechutes come from?
Jafflechutes came from a few places. The story we tell the most is that it all began as an idea to sew miniature parachutes into pant pockets. The story we tell least is that we rented a little house in the countryside on Airbnb and arrived to find that there was no electricity or phone coverage. Luckily we had some beer and a guitar, and we talked and talked and talked...
How did the project start? When did Jafflechutes change from being an idea to becoming a reality?
It started with a few small, nervous steps - mostly passing the idea around with friends and a few late night parachute workshops. It was only in the last few days before our first launch - probably after we built our website - that we really committed to the idea.
How did you get people excited about the idea of parachuting lunch? Surely that was the easy bit?
We've never really had a promotional plan, so in the first instance I think it really was just organic sharing across social media. It’s a really crazy, whimsical thing - and we’re quite conscious of that - so we try to have as much fun with it as possible. The idea is that it has to be fun - and as soon as it stops being that, we’ll pack up our chute-making and start thinking about the next thing.
How regularly do you do Jaffle drops?
We generally plan drops about every two months. The whole parachute making part of the venture really limits it to that, but we're also careful that we don’t over-test people's patience with an idea that is actually kinda silly. We've put a hold on all local drops until we come back from North America!
Who works on Jafflechutes? Were you brought together by your love of flying food?
Jafflechutes is many people! Basically anyone who has toasted a sandwich or stuck together a parachute is automatically made an honorary jafflechuter. There’s a core group of three of us who have been around from the very beginning - and if we can raise enough money the three of us will be doing most of the jafflechuting in America. I don't recall ever discussing flying food with them before July last year - that’s a new shared interest.
Is Jafflechutes a full time job for the group? Or do you have other jobs and hobbies?
Jafflechutes is just one of a number of hobbies, projects and ambitious experiments that we're all involved in. We all have vaguely normal day jobs that we need to keep in order to eat, etc.
What is your favorite Jaffle?
Honestly, we’ve found that you can put almost anything in a jaffle and it will taste delicious. We’ve tried tofu, asparagus, spaghetti, Vegemite, eggs, avocado, soft cheese, aged cheese, cheeses we can’t pronounce - they’re all amazing!
Why Jaffles? Why not hot dogs?
Jaffles are exceptionally suited to parachute-delivery (they won't drip cheese or sauce on your head!)
What happens when it's windy?
We're yet to be deterred by disastrously unfair weather - we just commit ourselves to losing LOTS of jafflechutes and making LOTS of replacements.
Where do you see Jafflechutes in the future? Whats up next?
We've just launched a Pozible campaign in an effort to scale up a series of planned Jafflechutes events across North America. We've received a bit of international press in the last few weeks, so the idea of venturing out of Melbourne is really exciting. The Pozible campaign has also given us an opportunity to experiment - so we're asking people to send pen pal-like messages in jaffle bags, and offering a First Date Jafflechute for the romantically inclined. If they work, a few of our crowd-funding campaign rewards might eventually become permanent fixtures in the Jafflechutes process. It’s a crazy, uncertain future!
We Heart/ Jafflechutes