A few months ago the very lovely people at Dinnr got in touch and asked if I would like to review their service. What is Dinnr? Good question. Promising to bring cooking back into the lives of busy people, it’s a takeout service offering fresh and organic meals couriered straight to your door. The twist is – you cook it yourself. There are quite a few similar services out there – like HelloFresh and Gousto – so I set out to see if Dinnr really cut the proverbial mustard.
Convenient: Dinnr offered me a generous £30 credit, which I added to my account and used to order a delicious Argentinian steak for two. Most crucially they offer same day and next day delivery, which you can arrange for time slots that fit into your working lifestyle, although they do encourage you to receive your delivery at your office. I found the service easy and convenient, and when my courier was 15 minutes late, a cheerful person from customer service rang me to apologise and inform me of the delay.
No wastage: I do love the idea that you get every single ingredient that is required carefully measured out into a container, bar some olive oil, salt and pepper (which one hopes most people have in their homes). I completely agree with their justification that although £15pp seems like a restaurant price to pay for something you then have to cook at home, it would add up to far more if you had to buy the component ingredients. Quite often I buy a bottle of wine for cooking when 150ml will do, and end up wasting the rest.
Foolproof: The presentation and bag your meal is delivered in is pretty straightforward and practical, with clearly labelled ingredients and an excruciatingly simple step-by-step guide. Without sounding condescending the Dinnr formula is great for hopeless cooks, but more advanced chefs could probably go off menu and tamper with their meal.
Good quality: Most importantly, the ingredients are really good quality and ethical. I chose the steak because I wanted to see what their organic Sussex-reared beef fillet was like. Tender and juicy with sizeable portions, it was tasty and very good value for money.
Personal touches: I like that Dinnr have gone the extra mile to make your custom with them all about the experience rather than just a transaction. They are big on their wine recommendations and even email ahead of your delivery with a Spotify playlist to go with your meal. It made me smile to see that they included some complimentary Lindt chocolates and a little candle for dinner.
Verdict? I started off sceptical – and yes, a little snobby – that I would even like the food, but by the end of the evening I realised I had managed to cook a delicious, high quality meal without having to put much thought into it or having to leave the house. That’s pretty awesome for a Friday night when your brain has turned to vegetable mush and you just want to chill out! £30 for two for Argentine steak is the most you’d pay; there are some other great options that all come in around £10 per head. I can foresee that the Dinnr model of meals for two might disgruntle solo diners or odd-numbered parties but hopefully they’ll address that problem soon.