At the beginning of the 2019, Lato, Woodland freshman, started up his own food review page on Instagram @tlato_foodreviews. Lato reviews a variety of foods, ranging from meals at different restaurants to what his own mom makes. Since creating the food page, he has already accumulated about 170 followers. These followers coming from fellow students and parents, however many of his followers don’t even know him.
“The idea for the food page really came from watching Gordon Ramsay,” Lato explained, “The way he critiques the food he reviews is really just funny and enjoyable.”
With that inspiration, Lato started off his reviews with foods he had eaten at some of his favorite restaurants such as Bar Pizza in New Haven and Ami’s Bagels in Waterbury, but soon he would move on and expand his reviews to anything on which he could get his hands on. However, this is not the only think Lato puts hard work into.
Working hard in school is important to Lato, but like for any student, academics can get stressful. He uses his food review page to take his mind off school for a bit and has even done reviews during school.
“It takes a ton of pressure off my school work especially when I have a quiz or test coming up,” Lato said “I’ll write a review just to take a break from it.”
Lato enjoys writing in a way to intrigue and interest his followers. He loves to incorporate Ramsey’s style of humor and reviewing style into his reviews by including examples of British jargon such as “bloody” in tons of different reviews including one video review on his instagram story about a cookie. “The idea for the food page really came from watching Gordon Ramsay,” Lato said.
“The idea for the food page really came from watching Gordon Ramsay,” Lato said.
“I feel like that is what attributes to the success of the page the most,” Lato elaborated “People enjoy comedy and they will always compliment me on how funny and enjoyable the last review was when they see me in the hallways.”
It’s not just the students of Woodland that Lato and his food review page have attracted. Con Olio Oils and Vinegars, a company out of Austin, Texas took note of a review Lato made on their balsamic vinegar, the first item to receive 10 out of 10 on Lato’s food page. The company’s Instagram page liked and reposted Latos review on it and Lato was elated to see that they enjoyed his review.
“When they first liked the post I was extremely happy,” Lato said “Once they reposted it I was ecstatic, and remembered going spastic during third lunch on B-Day.”
Lato has also given away multiple prizes for milestones he has reached with his account, for example when he reached 100 followers he gave away free autographs with his nickname “Silk” which comes from baseball and his smooth swing at the plate.
Lato has also begun to collaborate with Hawk Headlines. His debut with the members of the team was doing a review and taste test of many different flavors of Doritos and ranking them.
With all his hard work and dedication to the page and its followers, this is only the beginning of Lato’s success in reviewing food. Lato knows that he received help along this journey and he could not succeed without friends his family.
“I wouldn’t be able to eat the foods I get without my mom and other family members,” Lato said. “As well as friends and students suggesting reviews and supporting me and the page.”