Q&A With The Crityk App’s Sumit Sikka & John Kegel
There’s no shortage of places to eat in Los Angeles, but there’s a new app to help you find them all. The Crityk app has launched on iOS and Android and it’ll help you find new, cool places to eat in no time. Each dish is rated on a 5-star system and the app even takes dietary restrictions into account, as well as where you can find the best dish. Foodies can upload all their best food photos for everyone to see. The possibilities are endless.
Crityk even just hosted their first event this week at Sunnin Lebanese Cafe. I got to test out the app and speak with Crityk’s Sumit and John about the origins for the app and where they hope it goes next.
What led to the genesis of the idea for Crityk?
Sumit: For me it was, just going out and making sure we were getting the best item. A lot of experiences of going to a restaurant where you keep hearing, “Hey, the restaurant’s great. The restaurant is great.” Doesn’t necessarily answer that question. What was great there? What did you have to make your experience that much better, and the whole idea of everything being good on a menu, it can be true. There’s a lot of restaurants I didn’t get those kinds of experiences. And more so, just missing out and then you’re too full to eat something else or drink something else.
John: For me the inspiration is really more or less the fact that there’s a lot of friction when it comes to deciding on what to eat and you tend to read through many, many reviews that are skewed in 68 different directions not giving you the information you need. And you’re still hungry in the end. More importantly, me being a dietary snob and having certain things that I look for when I go out and eat. I find that it was hard to find things to eat and sometimes I ended up just cooking at home because sometimes there just wasn’t things out there. More importantly, just being able to sort through the information, the buzz.
What are some of your long term goals for critic? What do you hope in the long term for users and for yourself, and for the food industry here?
Sumit: Well, for me, I get excited that people are gonna be able to eat according to their own personal preference. That’s one of the bigger things for me. Long term we have a vision of where we would like to see this go, but for us right now it’s making sure everyone’s able to open up the app and have the experience of … And having the best experience when they go out to eat.
John: I think the long-term goal for me, and I know we can get there it’s just obviously it all takes time to make our application so fast and so efficient that you get in and you get out. But when you’re in there you’re enjoying every moment versus trying to cure some boredom that’s like you know, endless roaming. You’re almost scrolling with a purpose. More importantly just making it so the app itself becomes smart enough to decide what you should eat text because there’s always that question, “What do I wanna eat?” That happens every single day, multiple times a day, and we want the app to be able to help understand you better. Very similar to the Pandora station playing the next song that’s just as amazing as the one that just played. That’s kind of what we’re aiming for.
What is the feature of the app that you’re most proud of? And what do you think is a must-try feature of the app for foodies?
Sumit: The feature that I get most excited about is if you’re craving a certain dish you can just type it in in our delight section. If you’re craving mac and cheese, or for me an old fashioned, I just wanna know where the best one is around me.
John: I guess the feature for me that I’m most proud of is the ability to basically, with a fine tooth comb be able to see what I can and can’t eat. I mean, it’s that simple. I think in the day and age where everyone has their own diet that they’re following, it’s hard to keep a diet because there’s the fear of not knowing what to eat at a certain place. It happens to me all the time. I like the fact that I can understand the quality, and the nutrition behind what I’m about to eat wherever. And more importantly, it tells me exactly what I can eat, which is like huge. And it tells me how good it is.