Thursday, December 31, 2015

Food Network's January 2016 Programming Highlights

Hope everybody is enjoying the holidays!  Here are some of the highlights of the Food Network programming scheduled to air on the channel in January:
Photo - multivu

  • A Guy's Grocery Games tournament featuring 16 chefs from Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives starting on Sunday, January 3rd.
  • A new season(the 8th) of Worst Cooks in America starting on Sunday, January 3rd where it will be Anne Burrell vs. Tyler Florence again.
  • A Kids Baking Championship starting on Monday, January 4th.
  • A new season of Cake Wars starting on Monday, January 11th.
  • A new season of Michael Symon's Burgers, Brew & ‘Que premiering Friday, January 15th at 10:30pm.
  • New primetime episodes of American Diner Revival, Beat Bobby Flay, Chopped, Chopped Junior, Cutthroat Kitchen, Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives, Guilty Pleasures, Mystery Diners and Top 5 Restaurants
  • Giada has a new daytime series called Giada Entertains, which begins on Sunday, January 3rd.
  • New daytime episodes of Trisha's Southern Kitche, Brunch @ Bobby’s, Guy’s Big Bite, The Kitchen, The Pioneer Woman, Southern at Heart and Valerie’s Home Cooking

Press release with episode descriptions and air dates is below:

Thursday, December 17, 2015

Restaurant Impossible - La Casa Bianca Update

Photo - Food Network
Tonight on  Restaurant: Impossible, Robert Irvine and his crew are in Whitehouse Station, New Jersey to makeover La Casa Bianca.  In this ambush episode, the owner Paul's daughter reached out to Restaurant Impossible for help.  Paul's daughter Megan said the restaurant was struggling and her father was losing his passion for the business.  Robert needs to inspire Paul to regain his passion with hopes of turning the restaurant around.

As I normally do with Restaurant: Impossible episodes, I searched around the Internet to read stories, comments and reviews about La Casa Bianca to get an idea of how the restaurant is doing since Robert Irvine visited, and here is what I found (note - all reviews are post Restaurant: Impossible):

Friday, December 11, 2015

Food Network Related News and Links

Here is some recent news involving Food Network shows and chefs/personalities from the Food Network:



  • It seems like Food Network Star season 11 contestant Arnold Myint may be getting a show called Hint of Myint or they are testing out a pilot.  There are a lot of recent Twitter posts and Instagram posts about it on his social media.
  • Amanda Freitag is supposedly over $119,000 behind on her rent at her diner Empire Diner in NYC.  The money is due by December 14th or they will likely be evicted (Link).  So she is tasked with saving diners in American Diner Revival, but may lose her own.  Kind of similar to Restaurant Impossible and Robert Irvine as he closed a few restaurants after the show was on.
  • Michael Symon's show Burgers, Brew & Que was renewed for a second season that will premiere on January 15th.  The show will remain in the Friday at 10:30pm timeslot. (Link)
  • Michael Symon is also opening a restaurant inside of Atlantic City's Borgata Casino in the fall of 2016. (Link)

Thursday, December 10, 2015

Restaurant Impossible - Holiday Impossible City Kids Wilderness Project

Photo - Instagram
Tonight's Restaurant Impossible takes a break from the ambush theme and goes to visit Jackson Hole, Wyoming to visit the City Kids Wilderness Project camp for a special Holiday Impossible episode.  The camp welcomes at risk teens from inner-city Washington, D.C, and Robert Irvine and his team are redoing three of their spaces by updating their equipment and facilities.  Former Top Chef winner Stephanie Izard is also on hand to help out Robert, Tom, and Cheryl in the transformation.

As this is not a normal Restaurant Impossible episode, there will be no reviews, etc., but if you are interested in learning more about the City Kids Wilderness Project or are interested in making donations, here is their website with all of the relevant information.

Thursday, December 3, 2015

Restaurant Impossible - Cape Horn Family Restaurant Update

Photo - Food Network
Tonight on  Restaurant: Impossible, Robert Irvine and his crew are in Red Lion, Pennsylvania to makeover Cape Horn Family Restaurant.  In this ambush episode, the owner Joni's husband reached out to Restaurant Impossible for help.  Joni is having trouble paying the bills and has lost control of her staff.  Robert Irvine installs hidden cameras for this episode and determines it is actually Joni who needs help with things such as her self-confidence.

As I normally do with Restaurant: Impossible episodes, I searched around the Internet to read stories, comments and reviews about Cape Horn Family Restaurant to get an idea of how the restaurant is doing since Robert Irvine visited, and here is what I found (note - all reviews are post Restaurant: Impossible):

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Cutthroat Kitchen Superstar Sabotage Winner Crowned Tonight

Photo - Food Network
Here is a reminder that tonight at 9pm ET/PT on Food Network is the finale of Cutthroat Kitchen Superstar Sabotage, where the winner will take home additional money for their charity of choice.  The four chefs who won their episode and are back for the finale are: Richard Blais (Episode 1 winner), Justin Warner (Episode 2 winner), Fabio Viviani (Episode 3 winner), and Sherry Yard (Episode 4 winner).

Here are the challenges they will face from the episode description:
"Four star chefs return for the Superstar Sabotage finale, and first, one chef has to cook fish sticks in a weather chamber. Then, two chefs have to star in a giant monster movie as they make ramen. Finally, one chef has to cook a dessert with both hands behind their back"
This will be the second time Fabio has competed in a Superstar Sabotage finale, while Justin Warner competed in the last Superstar Sabotage, but did not advance.  Sherry and Richard are first time competitors in the Superstar Sabotage.

I will update this post with the winner once the episode airs.  Update with winner after the break:

Monday, November 30, 2015

Food Network's December 2015 Programming Highlights

Photo - Food Network
Here are some of the highlights of the Food Network programming scheduled to air on the channel in December:
  • The finale of Cake Wars: Christmas on Monday, December 14th at 9pm for $50,000.
  • The finale of Cutthroat Kitchen: Superstar Sabotage on Wednesday, December 2nd at 9pm.
  • The finale of Holiday Baking Championship on Sunday, December 20th at 9pm for $50,000.
  • The finale of Guys Grocery Games: Tournament of Champions on Sunday, December 27th at 8pm.
  • Holiday-themed episodes of pretty much every daytime and nighttime show throughout the month.
  • An All-Star Holiday special on Wednesday, December 9th at 8pm where Food Network stars such as Giada De Laurentiis, Ree Drummond, Guy Fieri, Bobby Flay, Nancy Fuller and Ina Garten whip up their favorite dishes from their kitchen.
  • A Celebrity Food Fight special on Wednesday, December 9th at 10pm hosted by Andy Richter.
  • A daytime special called Christmas at Bobby's on Sunday, December 13th at 1pm where Food Network stars such as Sunny Anderson, Anne Burrell, Scott Conant, Alex Guarnaschelli, Eddie Jackson, Katie Lee and Geoffrey Zakarian are over Bobby's house to cook their favorite Christmas dishes with him. 
  • A Chopped episode with Cooking Channel stars on Tuesday, December 8th at 10pm featuring Gabriele Corcos, Roger Mooking, Kelsey Nixon and Jim Stacy.
  • New primetime episodes of  Beat Bobby Flay, Chopped, Chopped Junior, Cutthroat Kitchen, Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives, Guilty Pleasures, Mystery Diners, Top Five Restaurants, and Unwrapped 2.0.
  • New daytime episodes of Brunch @ Bobby’s, Farmhouse Rules, Giada’s Holiday Handbook, Guy’s Big Bite, The Kitchen, Southern at Heart, Patricia Heaton Parties, The Pioneer Woman and Valerie’s Home Cooking.


 Press release with episode descriptions and air dates is below:

Friday, November 20, 2015

Food Network Related News and Links

Photo - Instagram
Here is some recent news involving Food Network shows and chefs/personalities from the Food Network:

  • Jeff Mauro was recently selected to play Shoot the Puck at a Chicago Blackhawks game. (Link)
  • Someone put up Craigslist ads hoping to cast Ina Garten and Guy Fieri look-a-likes for a rap video in New York City.  The concept is a cooking show that erupts into a party scene. The Ina ad says no nudity but possibly a bikini shot. (Ina ad, Guy ad)
  • Giada De Laurentiis has a new boyfriend, who is technically still married (going through a divorce), and they were caught kissing at a Houston bar. (Link)
  • Guy Fieri did a long interview with GQ where he talks about feeding his turtle dog poop and talking some trash on Anthony Bourdain for always making fun of him.  The article was written by Drew Magary, who won an episode of Chopped.
  • A clip of Guy Fieri signing a Lean Cuisine and throwing it into a crowd has gone viral this week. (Link)
  • Cat Cora and her wife filed for divorce after being together for 17 years (married for about 2).  Cat filed for joint custody of their sons, while her wife wants full custody, so it appears there will be a custody battle.  They have four sons together, and three were carried by her wife Jennifer and one was carried by Cat. (Link)
  • Alex Guarnaschelli is trying her hand at some comedy and recently did a show at Caroline's in New York City (Link).  Food Network stars such as Bobby Flay, Katie Lee, and Anne Burrell were in attendance to support her (pictured above). 
  • Marc Murphy recently opened a new restaurant in Tampa called Grey Salt, which is in The Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Tampa. (Link)

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Restaurant Impossible - Stella's Dine-Inn Update

Photo - Facebook
Tonight on  Restaurant: Impossible, Robert Irvine and his crew are in New Kensington, Pennsylvania to makeover Stella's Dine-Inn Restaurant.  In this ambush episode, the owner's daughter reached out to Restaurant Impossible for help.  The owner Stacey and her son Dom, who is the main cook are constantly fighting and the fighting is tearing the restaurant and family apart.  Stacy wants to keep the restaurant going in her late husband's memory.

As I normally do with Restaurant: Impossible episodes, I searched around the Internet to read stories, comments and reviews about Stella's Dine-Inn Restaurant to get an idea of how the restaurant is doing since Robert Irvine visited, and here is what I found (note - all reviews are post Restaurant: Impossible):

Friday, November 13, 2015

Two Restaurant Impossible Closures - Shade Tree Customs, Salt Works II

Photo - Food Network
Two restaurants that appeared on Restaurant Impossible have recently closed.  Shade Tree Customs in Albuquerque, New Mexico closed after two years in business.  The restaurant closed due to a combination of things including: not enough business, problems getting approval to open a patio, and back taxes.  They even tried to raise $30,000 through GoFundMe, but ended up only getting $65 in donations (Link).  The motorcycle shop component of Shade Tree remains open, but it will probably be moving to a new location.

Salt Works II in Wilmington, North Carolina also closed recently and posted the following message to their Facebook page on November 6th:
Well today is a sad day for most of the Saltworks II family...today was our last day to be open for business . We want to say thank you to all of our loyal customers for your patronage and to all of our valued employees for your hard work over the last 6 years. It's been one heck of a run, but sadly it must come to an end.

We had planned on letting the public know today and had hoped to work through the weekend and go out with a bang, but due to the loss of some key employees mid-day today, we cannot staff accordingly. We're sorry for the short notice.

To those employees who were going to stick it out to the end... thank you. Thank you for your loyalty and hard work . Thank you for your early mornings and late afternoons. We will miss you and if you ever need anything from us, all you need to do is ask.

Thank you again to all of our customers. We are sorry that things are ending this way. We will miss seeing you every day or every weekend. We thank you for your support over the years.

Sincerely
Mike & Jon
Saltworks II

Shade Tree Customs was the 5th (out of 7) restaurant to close from season 10 of Restaurant Impossible.  Salt Works II was the last remaining restaurant from season 1 of Restaurant Impossible that was still open with the same owners.  One of the restaurants from season 1 is still open, but it is operating under different ownership.  The Restaurant Impossible Update Page has been updated to show these two restaurants as Closed.

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Restaurant Impossible - Ellendale's Restaurant Update

Photo - Food Network
Tonight on  Restaurant: Impossible, Robert Irvine and his crew are in Nashville, Tennessee to makeover Ellendale's Restaurant.  In this ambush episode, the employees of the restaurant reached out for help as the restaurant has become rundown and owner Julie's management style has left the staff frustrated.  The employees see potential in the restaurant as it is a staple in Nashville, however Julie isn't sure if being on TV is a good thing.  She needs to decide if she wants Robert's help or if she wants him to leave.

As I normally do with Restaurant: Impossible episodes, I searched around the Internet to read stories, comments and reviews about Ellendale's Restaurant to get an idea of how the restaurant is doing since Robert Irvine visited, and here is what I found (note - all reviews are post Restaurant: Impossible):

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Giada De Laurentiis Has A Boyfriend.... Kind Of

Giada De Laurentiis is currently on tour promoting her new cookbook Happy Cooking and she has also been appearing on shows such as Today and Ellen to promote her book.

Giada De Laurentiis was on the Wendy Williams Show yesterday, and during a cooking segment, Wendy asked Giada if she was dating anybody and if she had a boyfriend.  Giada responded with, "I'm gonna say...uh...Kind of."

She went on to say that was the first time she had actually said that and refused to answer if she was in love.  Giada also dismissed the rumors about Matt Lauer and Bobby Flay earlier in the interview.

The video is below - Fast Forward to the 4:15 mark if you want to see where Wendy asks if Giada is dating.



Who knows who it is, but unless he is traveling with her over the next month, he probably will not see much of her.  Giada will be all over the country to promote her book during the month of November.

UPDATE - It appears Giada's new boyfriend is Shane Farley, who is an executive producer in New York City.  He was going to produce a daytime talkshow with Giada and Bobby Flay back in 2012, but the show was never picked up.  (Link with more info)

Restaurant Impossible - Copper Still CD Vodka Lounge and Eatery Update

Photo - Food Network
Tonight on  Restaurant: Impossible, Robert Irvine and his crew are in Crestwood, Illinois to makeover Copper Still CD Vodka Lounge and Eatery.  The place hasn't earned a profit since opening eight months ago and the restaurant is causing a strain in the relationship of owner Christina and her husband Dominic.  Stephanie, the manager of the restaurant, reached out to the show for help, and Robert does a "double ambush" by showing up without notifying her either.  Stephanie refuses to help after this and the show also has to deal with an unexpected theft.

As I normally do with Restaurant: Impossible episodes, I searched around the Internet to read stories, comments and reviews about Copper Still CD Vodka Lounge and Eatery to get an idea of how the restaurant is doing since Robert Irvine visited, and here is what I found (note - all reviews are post Restaurant: Impossible):

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Food Network's November 2015 Programming Highlights

Here are some of the highlights of the Food Network programming scheduled to air on the channel in November:
Photo - Facebook
  • The start of Holiday Baking Championship on November 1st.
  • The premiere of Cutthroat Kitchen: Superstar Sabotage on Wednesday, November 4th where 16 chefs compete for up to $75,000 for charity - See the competitors.
  • The premiere of Cake Wars: Christmas on Monday, November 9th for a $50,000 prize.
  • The premiere of Guy’s Grocery Games: Tournament of Champions on Sunday, November 29th, where previous winners return to compete for "the biggest prize ever" on the show.
  • The return of Top 5 Restaurants and Guilty Pleasures on Monday nights.
  • The Chopped: Impossible finale on November 12th at 8pm where someone will take home $15,000 and get to go up against Robert Irvine for an additional $25,000.
  • New primetime episodes of Beat Bobby Flay, Chopped, Chopped Junior, Cutthroat Kitchen, Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives and Guy’s Grocery Games, Mystery Diners, Unwrapped 2.0 and Restaurant Impossible.
  • New daytime episodes of Valerie’s Home Cooking, Giada’s Holiday Handbook, Barefoot Contessa,  Brunch @ Bobby’s, Farmhouse Rules, Guy’s Big Bite, The Kitchen, Patricia Heaton Parties and Southern at Heart.
  • There are tons of Thanksgiving themed episodes throughout the month and some of the biggest ones are: Pioneer Woman's Ultimate Thanksgiving Monday, November 16th at 8pm,  a Barefoot Contessa Thanksgiving special Sunday, November 15th at 1pm where Bobby Flay joins Ina Garten in the kitchen and Guy’s Big Bite: A Very Fieri Thanksgiving – Premiering Friday, November 20th at 8pm.
  • There is also an All-Star Thanksgiving special on Saturday, November 21st at 8pm that will star Giada De Laurentiis, Ree Drummond, Guy Fieri, Bobby Flay, Nancy Fuller and Damaris Phillips.
  • A Clash of the Grandmas Thanksgiving special on Wednesday, November 18th where grandmas compete for $10,000 by cooking a Thanksgiving meal.  Judges for this special are Nancy Fuller, recent Food Network Star winner Eddie Jackson and Aarti Sequeira. 
  • Not on this press release - American Diner Revival was renewed for a second season and will premiere November 27th. (Link)
 Press release with episode descriptions and air dates is below:

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Restaurant Impossible - Lake Arrowhead Sports Grille Update

Photo - Food Network
Tonight on  Restaurant: Impossible, Robert Irvine and his crew are in Blue Jay, California to makeover Lake Arrowhead Sports Grille.  In this ambush, Konnor, who is the son of owners Keith and Karen, reached out to Restaurant Impossible for their help.  Konnor thinks that everything is falling apart, such as his parents marriage, the business, his dad's interest in the restaurant, and his mom's health.

As I normally do with Restaurant: Impossible episodes, I searched around the Internet to read stories, comments and reviews about Lake Arrowhead Sports Grille to get an idea of how the restaurant is doing since Robert Irvine visited, and here is what I found (note - all reviews are post Restaurant: Impossible):

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Worst Cooks In America Celebrity Edition Winner Crowned Tonight

Photo - Food Network
Tonight at 9pm ET/PT on Food Network is the finale of Worst Cooks in America: Celebrity Edition where the winner will take home $50,000 for their charity.  The final two contestants are Jenni "JWoww" Farley representing Anne Burrell's team and Kendra Wilkinson representing Rachael Ray's team.  On this episode, JWoww and Kendra are coached by their mentors and have to cook a three-course menu for a panel of experts.  Whoever cooks the better meal will win $50,000 for their charity.

To get to this point, the order of celebrities eliminated was Dean Cain (episode 1), Jaleel White (episode 2), Chris Soules (episode 3), Barry Williams(episode 4), and Ellen Cleghorne (episode 5).  The ratings for Worst Cooks in America: Celebrity Edition have been very good for a Food Network show on a Wednesday night bringing in about 1.5 million viewers per episode, so this may be something Food Network will try to do again.

I will update this post with the winner of Worst Cooks in America: Celebrity Edition once the episode airs.

UPDATE - Winner after the page break

Friday, October 23, 2015

Pinehurst Country Lodge From Restaurant Impossible Has Closed

Photo - Food Network
Pinehurst Country Lodge in Greeley, Pennsylvania, which was featured on season six of Restaurant Impossible has closed.  The restaurant posted the following message on their Facebook page on October 18th:
"It is with great sadness we announce the closing of the Pinehurst restaurant. Between economic difficulties in our area, government regulations and taxes and now the closing of route 739 cutting off a high percentage of our customer base it is no longer feasible to remain open. My words won't do justice in thanking those of you that have supported us over the years. The great people that we have met and considered friends including the Resnicks, the Bowmans, the Cutrones, the Luca's, the Brownlees and Bob Schmidt. And to our great staff who we considered family, thanks to all of you. While life doesn't always work out as planned the memories of the Pinehurst and those we have met will stay with us forever. Thank you all."

They also posted a similar message on their website.  The restaurant did have some pretty good reviews for the food and a lot of people responded to their Facebook message saying they were sad to see it go.  This is the 10th restaurant from season 6 (2013) of Restaurant Impossible to close and the Restaurant Impossible Update Page has been updated with this information.

(Link to Original Update when episode aired)

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Restaurant Impossible - Theresa's Restaurant Update

Photo - Food Network
Tonight on the season 12 premiere of Restaurant: Impossible, Robert Irvine and his crew are in Bradenton, Florida to makeover Theresa's Restaurant.  This season of Restaurant Impossible has an ambush theme, and Robert ambushes the owner Jodi after her friend and banker put out a call for help.  Robert finds that Jodi is micromanaging her business and while there, the kitchen staff threatens to walk out. 

As I normally do with Restaurant: Impossible episodes, I searched around the Internet to read stories, comments and reviews about Theresa's Restaurant to get an idea of how the restaurant is doing since Robert Irvine visited, and here is what I found (note - all reviews are post Restaurant: Impossible):

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Food Network Star Season 12 Now Casting

Photo - Food Network
Food Network Star is already casting for season 12 of the show, and they have upcoming open calls in Chicago, Los Angeles, Dallas, and Washington DC.  You can also submit applications online and they are due by November 18th.  One thing I always like to look at are the rules and eligibility requirements for being on the show.  Here are a few of things of interest from the rules:

  • Contestants must be willing to travel to a location determined by Food Network for 6-8 weeks in January/February 2016.  So filming is usually 6-8 weeks for the show, and considering there are usually about 11 episodes, that equates to shooting 1-2 per week.  Later in the rules, it says filming days are usually 10-12 hour (or more) days on your feet.
  • All finalists are required to sign a release and agreement form with Food Network that will 
  • "render  applicant  exclusive  to FOOD  NETWORK for  a  pre-determined period  of  time  (meaning  that  applicant  would  not,  among  other  limitations,  be  able  to  appear in programs in any media, make public appearances, publish a food-related book, or be associated in any manner with any commercial, advertisement, and/or endorsement without FOOD NETWORK's express written  permission  in  each  circumstance); and (ii)  give FOOD  NETWORK the  option,  at FOOD NETWORK's  sole  election,  to  exercise  the  right  to  have applicant  appear  as  a  host,  co-host,  or contributor  to FOOD  NETWORK programming  or  use  applicant's  name,  image,  and/or  likeness  in FOOD  NETWORK programming, merchandising, or  other  ancillary  media  (including  a food-related book  at  a  rate  of  compensation  and  in  accordance  with  such  terms  and  conditions  that  shall  be determined by FOOD NETWORK in its sole discretion)"
    I imagine the actual release and agreement form has much more information and restrictions.
  • The last rule makes it seem like the Food Network will pick the winner again for season 12 and America will not get a chance to vote.

Other things of note on the JS Casting site, is that they are casting for Beat Bobby Flay season 8, and they are already casting for a second season of Chopped Jr. before the first season has even started.  They are also casting for a Kids BBQ show, but it doesn't say if that is for Food Network or another channel.

Friday, October 9, 2015

Eddie Jackson's BBQ Blitz Premieres Tonight On Food Network

Photo - Food Network
Here is just a reminder that Food Network Star winner Eddie Jackson's show BBQ Blitz will premiere tonight on Food Network at 10:30pm ET/PT.  As detailed before, the show is a traveling/competition show where "grillers, smokers, and fire-roasters will cook off for a chance to win $5,000 and the title of best barbecue chef."  This disappointed some fans of Food Network Star who wanted to see him cook rather than host as Food Network Star focuses more on cooking than hosting.


The judges on each of the episodes include a few celebrity chef judges and a former NFL player.  Looking at the first few episode descriptions, the former NFL players appearing as judges will be: Ken "The Hammer" Hamlin, Anthony Lucas, and Quinton Caver.  All of these players attended Eddie's alma mater Arkansas, so all the players on this season may have ties to Arkansas.  The show really plays on Eddie's football past with the name BBQ Blitz, cheering spectators, and former NFL players.

BBQ Blitz will also replay three hours after the premiere at 1:30am Saturday and again on Sunday at 3:30pm ET/PT if you happen to miss it or don't DVR it.  I will update this post with the ratings for BBQ Blitz once they are released.

UPDATE - The ratings for BBQ Blitz were - Total Viewership 865,000, Target Demo 18-49 - 0.3  (TV By The Numbers).  For reference, Diners, Drive Ins and Dives right before it at 10pm had 1,029,000 Total Viewers with the same amount in the target demo.  So there was a considerable drop off.

Burgers, Brew & Que was another show that premiered in the same timeslot on July 17th, and had Total Viewership of 1,310,000 and a 0.4 in the target demo. (Show Buzz Daily).  The Diners, Drive Ins and Dives right before it at 10pm had 1,275,000 total viewers, so there was a slight increase.

Judging by these numbers, I would say that the ratings for BBQ Blitz weren't that great.

The full press release about the show from September is below if you are interested:

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Cutthroat Kitchen: Superstar Sabotage Begins November 4th - See The Competitors

Photo - Food Network
Food Network's Cutthroat Kitchen: Superstar Sabotage is coming back for a second tournament that will begin on Wednesday, November 4th at 9pm.  Sixteen chefs will compete for up to $75,000 for charity in this five-episode series.  In the first four episodes, the winners can win up to $25,000 and they will all face off in the finale for a chance to win up to $50,000 more.  The chefs competing in this season include:

Episode 1 - Richard Blais, Cat Cora, Melissa d'Arabian and Aarti Sequeira
Episode 2 - Josh Elkin, Eric Greenspan, Kelsey Nixon and Justin Warner
Episode 3 - Rocco DiSpirito, Duff Goldman, Claire Robinson and Fabio Viviani
Episode 4 - Bobby Deen, Alex Guarnaschelli, Marcel Vigneron and Sherry Yard

Last Cutthroat Kitchen: Superstar Sabotage was won by Eric Greenspan, who is competing again this year.  Other repeat competitors from the last Superstar Sabotage are Aarti Sequeria, Marcel Vigneron, Fabio Viviani, Justin Warner, and Alex Guarnaschelli.  Eric, Aarti, Marcel and Fabio each won a round last year and took home money for their charity.

The full press release  about Cutthroat Kitchen: Superstar Sabotage with episode descriptions is below:

Sunday, September 27, 2015

Great Food Truck Race Season 6 Winner Crowned Tonight

Photo - Food Network
The winner of season 6 of The Great Food Truck Race will be crowned tonight at 9pm on the Food Network and will take home $50,000.  The final 2 trucks are Waffle Love and Pho Nomenal Dumplings, and this was previously revealed in the spoiler post from last month.

The final episode goes from St. Louis to Chicago, and is described as:
The  final  two  teams  arrive  in  St.  Louis,  and  Tyler  challenges  them  to  create  three  dishes  with  three  different  proteins  in  thirty minutes to  be  judged  by the city’s most renowned chefs.  The  winner  gets  a $500 head  start,  and  the  teams  head  to  Chicago  for their final mission.  On the way there, Tyler throws them a curveball with a quick detour to Lincoln’s birthplace Springfield, for a five-dollar bill challenge.  In Chicago, they have to hit three different neighborhoods with three different ethnic dishes, and the team that sells 50 dishes in each location wins the whole competition.  The teams race through the streets to sell, and the game turns from money to speed.  At the final point in Millennium Park, Tyler crowns the $50,000 champion of The Great Food Truck Race

This post will be updated with the winner of the The Great Food Truck Race season 6 after the episode airs.  It seems like Waffle Love already has six food trucks and a store according to their website, so a lot of people are probably rooting for Pho Nomenal Dumplings.

UPDATE - Pho Nomenal Dumplings ended up winning season 6 of The Great Food Truck Race and won the $50,000 prize.
Photo - Food Network
 

Friday, September 25, 2015

Food Network Related News and Links

Photo - Twitter
Here is some recent news involving Food Network shows and chefs/personalities from the Food Network:

  • Bobby Flay is releasing another cookbook on Tuesday called Brunch at Bobby's: 140 Recipes for the Best Part of the Weekend.  He is also doing a few live appearances in the month of October in a few US cities.
  • Alton Brown is releasing another cookbook next year called Everyday Cook according to his Twitter
  • This past week, Robert Irvine received Congressional Medal of Honor's 2015 Patriot Award (Link).  Yesterday was also Robert's 50th birthday.
  • Sandra Lee recently revealed that she was cancer free, and she was also blessed by the Pope while he was visiting the United States (pictured).  
  • Alex Guarnaschelli plans to open a "beachy and fun" restaurant in South Beach, Miami. (Link)
  • Patricia Heaton will have a show on the Food Network that will premiere next month called Patricia Heaton Parties (Link).  This continues the trend of the Cooking Channel and Food Network giving celebrities cooking shows.
  • There will be a Cake Wars: Christmas competition that will air on Food Network in November and the winner will take home $50,000. (Link)
  • Veronica Seguin was the winner of Food Network's Chopped Teen Tournament and won $25,000. (Link)
  • Dean Cain was the first celebrity eliminated from Worst Cooks In America Celebrity Edition. (Link)

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Sandra Lee Is Now Cancer Free

Food Network's Sandra Lee who revealed that she had breast cancer in May of this year went on Good Morning America this morning to reveal that she is now cancer free. 

She underwent a double mastectomy to treat the cancer and despite some complications along the way, doctors have determined she is cancer free.  Sandra has been documenting her fight on her website and Facebook page, and in the interview she reveals she went from a DD cup to an A cup after the mastectomy.

She attended the Emmy awards this past Sunday in a pink dress (pictured right) and said, "Women are not just about their boobs which is a statement I was making when I wore that dress."

Sandra also encouraged women to take advantage of early detection technologies and the treatments available.

Video of the full interview is after the break:

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

New Restaurant Impossible Season Begins October 22nd With Ambush Theme

Photo - Multivu
There have been a lot of people wondering when/if Restaurant Impossible would be coming back for another season, so I figured I would do a post with an update.   Part of the reason there were a lot of people asking was because Food Network hasn't been playing any Restaurant Impossible reruns.  The new season will begin on October 22nd at 9pm, and the season will have an ambush theme, where they supposedly makeover unsuspecting restaurants.  Note that this is a Thursday night vs. the usual Wednesday night that Restaurant Impossible usually airs.  I think this season will be six episodes vs. the usual 13-episode season, but I will try to confirm that.

It should be interesting to see how they play off the ambush on the show, but you would think to begin filming, people would have had to sign waivers.  As always, be sure to visit this site for updates on each of the restaurants appearing on Restaurant Impossible.

Coinciding with the Restaurant Impossible return is Chopped:Impossible, which will air at 8pm right before Restaurant Impossible.  Twelve returning Chopped champions return and Robert Irvine is a judge for the first three episodes.  The three winners then compete in the finale, with someone winning $15,000.  After the winner is determined, they get to go up against Robert Irvine in a wild-card round where they can win an additional $25,000.

Friday, September 11, 2015

Justin Warner's Restaurant Do Or Dine Closes

Photo - Food Network
This week, Food Network Star winner Justin Warner's Brooklyn, NY restaurant Do or Dine abruptly closed.  The restaurant posted the following message on their website and social media accounts:
"Do or Dine will be closed for the foreseeable future. We are very sorry to disappoint those who were planning to dine."
When asked why they were closing on Facebook, the restaurant responded:
"Dreams > $. That's the long story short. Sorry again folks. We'll say more when we can. Right now it's just a bit tenuous. Thank you all for your patience and your love of what we do."

You may remember last year, Do or Dine was trying to raise $15,000 through Kickstarter for an outdoor enclosure for the restaurant.  They succeeded in raising the money, but if you look at the comments on their Kickstarter page, it appears that a lot of people never received things promised such as T-shirts. 

Justin hasn't commented on the reason for closing yet, but the "Dreams > $" quote seems like he could be trying to further his TV career.  He does have a cookbook coming out on October 13th, 2015, and we will have to see if he appears on the Food Network any more than he has.  He was just recently on Guy's Grocery Games where he won $16,000 for charity.  Perhaps he should have played for his restaurant's benefit.

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Giada De Laurentiis Book Tour For 'Happy Cooking'

Giada De Laurentiis has a new cookbook Happy Cooking  which is scheduled to release on November 3rd, 2015.  According to the book description, it has 200 recipes and helpful advice on potlucks, open houses, and what to pack for lunch.  It also features "New Year's cleanse, homemade Christmas gifts, and ideas for every holiday, special occasion, and casual weekend in between."

In conjunction with her book release, Giada will be doing a book tour with 13 stops across the United States.  The tour will stop in the following cities:



Date                               City                            Venue

November 3, 2015     Hartford, CT             The Bushnell
November 4, 2015     Stamford, CT            The Palace Theatre
November 6, 2015     Philadelphia, PA       Merriam Theater
November 7, 2015     Washington, DC       GW Lisner Auditorium
November 9, 2015     Boston, MA              North Shore Music Theatre
November 10, 2015    Coral Springs, FL    Coral Springs CFA
November 11, 2015    Atlanta, GA              Egyptian Ballroom
November 12, 2015    Chicago, IL               Pfeiffer Hall
November 13, 2015    Dallas, TX                Majestic Theatre
November 14, 2015    Houston, TX             Cullen Performance Hall
November 15, 2015    Mesa, AZ                  Mesa Arts Center
November 16, 2015    San Jose, CA            California Theatre
November 17, 2015    San Diego, CA         Balboa Theatre


Event information about the tour is below, and there are also opportunities to order VIP tickets for a meet and greet:

Giada De Laurentiis is the Emmy Award-winning star of Food Network's Everyday Italian, Giada at Home, and Giada in Italy; a judge on Food Network Star; a contributing correspondent for NBC's Today show; editor-in-chief of a weekly digital magazine, Giada and author of seven New York Times bestselling books. Plus Giada recently celebrated the 1-year anniversary of her acclaimed Las Vegas restaurant. Her newest cookbook Happy Cooking, is one of the most highly anticipated cookbooks of the year! Joined by a moderator, Giada will share her inspiration for her Happy Cooking. An audience QandA will immediately follow each interview. Don't miss your chance to see Giada live on stage during her upcoming book tour! Williams-Sonoma is the proud bookseller of Happy Cooking for the tour. They are now offering ticket-holders the opportunity to preorder an autograph copy of Giada's new book to be picked up at the event for purchase online at Williams-Sonoma.com. 
So, if you are interested in seeing Giada in person, she may be coming to a city near you in November.

(Giada On Tour)

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Camp Cutthroat Winner Crowned Tonight

Tonight at 9pm ET/PT on Food Network is the Camp Cutthroat finale where the winner can win up to $75,000.  Knowing how people usually bid on Cutthroat Kitchen, the total will probably be much lower.

The winners of the first four episodes that will compete for the grand prize are:
  • Monterey Salka (Episode 1)
  • Candice Wilson (Episode 2)
  • Jessica Entzel (Episode 3) 
  • Demarco Ellis (Episode 4) 

Also, here is the episode description for tonight's episode where Antonia Lofaso will be the judge:

The winners of each heat compete for up to $75,000 and Camp Cutthroat end-of-summer bragging rights. Alton sends two chefs to rock the boat and make a trout dinner, then the opponents play “capture the cheese.” For the final challenge, it's a dessert battle with a tight squeeze and the winner takes it all.


I will update this post with the winner after the episode airs and let you know how much the winner ended up taking home.

UPDATE - Demarco Ellis was the first eliminated, followed by Monterey Salka.  After the final challenge, Jessica Entzel was crowned the winner of the first Camp Cutthroat and took home $18,500 in addition to her winnings from her first win ($27,200 total).

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Food Network Related News and Links

Here is some recent news involving Food Network shows and chefs/personalities from the Food Network:
  • Robert Irvine (as part of Pervine Foods LLC) is being sued by Nestle for trademark infringement.  Nestle claims the Robert Irvine Protein bar called Fit Crunch is using nearly identical trademarks and packaging and could be confused with Nestle's Crunch bars (both pictured right). (Link).  
  • UPDATE - Robert Irvine reached out on Twitter and said they were asked to change some things on the packaging which they agreed to.  Also they were on their third revision and everything was 'all good.'
  • Pioneer Woman Ree Drummond has partnered with Walmart to launch a collection of "modern country housewares" that includes tableware, glassware, cookware, bakeware and more. (Link)
  • Jeff Mauro, who launched a BBQ sauce called Pork & Mindy's, will now open his first restaurant in Chicago called Pork & Mindy's. (Link)
  • Food Network Star finalists Dom Tesoriero and Jay Ducote recently met with Susie Fogelson in New York according to their social media accounts.  They posted the following picture, and Jay said he still doesn't know "what's next."


    • Paula Deen's former cook Dora Charles is releasing a cookbook next week.  She was integral in Paula Deen's career and worked in Paula's restaurants.  She supposedly was underpaid and The New York Times did a story about her and the cookbook, which is a good read.  It seems like she isn't allowed to say much about Paula Deen due to an out of court settlement. (Link)
    • Food Network Star winner Eddie Jackson is currently filming his show BBQ Blitz and will film in Kansas City, MO on 9/3 if you are interested in attending. (Link)
    • Masaharu Morimoto is opening a restaurant in Downtown Disney World called Morimoto Asia and it will open on September 30th. (Link)

    Friday, August 28, 2015

    Eddie Jackson's BBQ Blitz Is A Traveling Competition Show

    Photo - Twitter
    Season 11 Food Network Star winner Eddie Jackson's show will premiere on Food Network on Friday, October 9th at 10:30pm.  So far we knew that the show would be called BBQ Blitz and according to the pilot from Food Network Star, Eddie would travel around to restaurants trying their barbecue.

    Food Network revealed their October programming highlights, and in the press release, BBQ Blitz is described as:
    "Game on! FOOD NETWORK STAR winner and former NFL player Eddie Jackson is taking a barbecue battle on the road in new series BBQ Blitz. In each city, three of the best grillers, smokers, and fire-roasters will cook off for a chance to win $5,000 and the title of best barbecue chef.

    Online in September, get to know more about host Eddie Jackson and go behind-the-scenes of his new show. Join the BBQ journey with #BBQBlitz."
    So this means the show will involve Eddie Jackson traveling to different cities and being a host of a competition show that puts barbecue chefs against each other for a $5,000 prize.  The show is currently filming and you can probably see some updates on social media using #BBQBlitz.

    I am sure this may disappoint some people who would rather see the Food Network Star winner get a cooking show.  Also, a lot of people complain about too many traveling shows and competition shows on Food Network, and this combines them both into one show.  It seems like for this season of Food Network Star, 'the network' was looking for a host rather than a cook, so the POV's on the show were pretty much useless.

    Wednesday, August 26, 2015

    Paula Deen To Compete On Dancing With The Stars

    ABC's Dancing With The Stars will start its 21st season on Monday, September 21st and it appears that Paula Deen will be competing on this season.  While there has been no official announcement, multiple sources are reporting that Paula Deen will appear on the upcoming season.  Other 'celebrities' that have been confirmed or rumored include: Nick Carter (Backstreet Boys), Bindi Irwin (Crocodile Hunter's daughter), Alexa Vega (actress),  and Victor Espinoza (Triple Crown winning jockey).

    Paula Deen was rumored to be on the show in the past, but apparently the time wasn't right.  This show seems to be one that celebrities out of the spotlight appear on to try to get back into the spotlight.  Paula Deen is probably trying to continue her comeback by appearing on Dancing With The Stars, while ABC is probably hoping the controversy of having her on the show will draw ratings.

    Paula's dancing partner isn't known yet, but I would expect some heavy flirting being done by Paula. 

    Monday, August 24, 2015

    Great Food Truck Race Season 6 Spoilers

    Photo - Food Network
    The sixth season of The Great Food Truck Race premiered last night on the Food Network.  This season travels route 66 and has stops in the following cities: Santa Monica, CA,  Sedona, AZ, Santa Fe, NM, Amarillo, TX, Tulsa, OK, St. Louis, MO, Springfield, IL and Chicago, IL.  This year the trucks competing are not rookies competing for a food truck, but veteran food truckers that will compete for a $50,000 cash prize.

    The food trucks competing are: Diso's Italian Sandwich Society (Brooklyn, New York), GD Bro Truck (Orange Country, California), Pho Nomenal Dumplings (Raleigh, North Carolina), Postcards (Los Angeles), Spice It Up (Phoenix), The Guava Tree Truck (Dallas) and Waffle Love (Provo, Utah).

    As the food trucks advertise their locations on social media and local newspapers do stories on the race while it is filming, the order the food trucks are eliminated can be determined.  If you are interested in seeing which trucks are eliminated in each episode, and who the final two trucks are, continue reading.  Obviously it is a spoiler, but it just reveals the final two trucks and not the winner.

    Wednesday, August 19, 2015

    Food Network President Brooke Johnson To Retire

    Photo - Scripps
    The Hollywood Reporter just reported
    that Food Network President Brooke Johnson has announced that she will retire.  Brooke joined Food Network as the president in 2004 and will remain with the company as a consultant through the end of 2016.

    Her bio on the Scripps Network Interactive site states:
    "Named President of Food Network in 2004, Brooke Bailey Johnson  was elevated in 2010 to head of the entire food category at Scripps Networks which includes Food Network, Cooking Channel, FoodNetwork.com, CookingChannelTV.com, Food2.com, Recipezaar.com and Enterprises, the new business and licensing and merchandising arm of the company."
    You may recall seeing Brooke on the Food Network Star finale's and she was on the most recent finale where she announced Eddie Jackson as the winner.  No replacement has been announced, but it will be interesting to see if they hire someone in-house or look elsewhere.  It will also be interesting to see if the type of programming on the channel will change after her departure.

    Sunday, August 16, 2015

    Food Network Star Winner Crowned Tonight - Possible Spoiler?

    Photo - Food Network
    Tonight on the Food Network at 9pm ET/PT, the winner of Food Network Star will be revealed.  The remaining contestants who filmed pilots are Eddie Jackson, Dom Tesoriero, and Jay Ducote.  On the last episode Eddie did a pilot about Texas BBQ in unique places; Dom a pilot about visiting family owned Italian restaurants; and Jay a pilot about the country's best fried food.  All were traveling shows which seemed to be a bit different from the contestant's POV's throughout the season.

    In an interview with a local Baton Rouge website, Jay said that his television show pilot was not his idea and was assigned by the Food Network.  This tells you that the contestants didn't actually get to pick their idea for their own pilot and were possibly assigned show ideas.

    A commenter pointed this out, and it aligns with the possibility that Jay will win Food Network Star.  In April, a post on this website detailed the shows scheduled to air on the Food Network in 2015.  One of the shows had a working title of Deep Fried America and was described as "The host scours the country to find the most inventive and mouthwatering deep fried masterpieces."  This show was scheduled to begin in September 2015.  Food Network Star was filmed in early 2015, and the press release was about the upcoming shows was in April 2015, so it is possible this show was slated for the Food Network Star winner.  Other shows described in the April post had hosts listed (such as Curtis Stone, Michael Symon), but Deep Fried America didn't list a host.  A host may not have been listed so they didn't reveal the Food Network Star winner or they actually didn't have a host at the time.

    Also, the Food Network Star Winner Poll on this website has Jay winning (although he posted a link on his social media which skewed results).  Finally, Jay is having a big watch party tonight in a Baton Rouge theater with 400-500 people expected.

    So far everything points to Jay Ducote winning Food Network Star (including favorable editing throughout the season), and this post will be updated after the finale airs tonight to reveal the actual winner.

    UPDATE - Food Network threw a little bit of a curveball and Eddie Jackson was crowned the season 11 Food Network Star.  Congrats to Eddie!  It appears his show will air on a Friday, October 9th at 10:30pm and will be called BBQ Blitz.  Pretty interesting that they gave him a primetime show rather than the standard Saturday/Sunday morning timeslot.



    UPDATE - Another interesting tidbit about the finale - Jay explained at his viewing party that the finale was shot in June, and three different endings were filmed (meaning each contestant was filmed as a winner).  So even the contestants didn't know who was going to win until the finale aired. (Link)

    Tuesday, August 11, 2015

    Chopped Grill Masters Finale - Winner Gets $50,000

    Photo - Food Network
    Tonight on Food Network is the Chopped Grill Masters finale where the winner will go home with $50,000 in cash. The finalists competing are Chris Hart (episode 1 winner), Stan Hays (episode 2 winner), Leslie Roark Scott (episode 3 winner), and Angie Mar (episode 4 winner).

    On tonight's final episode, the contestants have to cook with rattlesnake in the first round, offal and fruit in the entree round, and a breakfast item and classic pie for the dessert round.

    I will update this post with the winner once the episode airs. This is the second Chopped Grill Masters tournament with Ernest Servantes winning the first one.

    Update - Leslie Roark Scott was eliminated first, followed by Chris Hart.  Then in the dessert round Angie Mar defeated Stan Hays to win the $50,000 and was crowned Chopped Grill Masters champion.

    Sunday, August 9, 2015

    Food Network Star Winner Poll

    For the past three years there has been a poll on this site to determine who people wanted to win that season of Food Network Star.  Each season, the winner was predicted correctly through the polls (Justin Warner, Damaris Phillips, and Lenny Mcnab won the polls and the competition).  This season is a little bit different as there is not a vote to determine the winner of the show and Food Network will instead pick the winner.  The poll to see who people want to win this season is below, but this year it doesn't matter what the people think.

    The finalists this year are Eddie Jackson, Jay Ducote, and Dom Tesoriero.  In their pilots, Jay's show concept was to travel around and try the country's best fried food.  Eddie's show concept was to travel around finding southern BBQ in areas you wouldn't expect, and Dom's pilot was going to family owned places and trying Italian food.

    Answer the poll question below with who you want to win season 11 of Food Network Star:

    Update- FYI - Jay posted links to this poll on his social media, so the results are a bit skewed. Thanks for the traffic Jay, but the poll isn't too accurate now. For what it's worth, Dom had a slight edge over Jay before this, but it was very close.

    Food Network Star Episode 10 Elimination & Star Salvation Winner

    Photo - Food Network
    Tonight on Food Network Star, the winner of Star Salvation was revealed and rejoined the competition.  As many suspected, Dom Tesoriero was the contestant that won Star Salvation and now has a chance to become the next Food Network Star.  This is the second year in a row that and Italian chef was eliminated from the competition due to bad camera skills and magically learned them during Star Salvation.

    During this episode the remaining contestants had to create their best dish and were allowed to use any of the eliminated contestants as their sous chef.  They each got one take to present the dish on camera, and Bobby, Giada, Bob, and Susie picked the three contestants who would produce pilots that would be directed by Rachael Ray.

    The judges decided that Jay Ducote, Dom Tesoriero, and Eddie Jackson would be the finalists to make pilots.  This meant that Arnold Myint was eliminated and will not be the next Food Network Star.

    Jay's show concept was to travel around and try the country's best fried food.  Eddie's show concept was to travel around finding southern BBQ in areas you wouldn't expect.  Dom's pilot was going to family owned places and trying Italian food.  So, all three pilots were traveling shows, and Jay and Eddie kind of brought in new concepts.


    I will have a poll up shortly on who people want to win between the three finalists.  As no one gets to vote this year, it will not help us determine who is in the lead for voting, but it will still be interesting to see who people want to win.

    Update - The poll is now live.

    Friday, August 7, 2015

    Giada De Laurentiis' Food Network Star Outfits - Too Revealing?

    There has been a lot of chatter this year about Giada De Laurentiis' outfits on Food Network Star after each episode airs.  Websites, message boards, the comments section of this site, and even Food Network's Facebook page all have people talking about Giada's revealing clothing on the show.


    There weren't too many complaints at the beginning of the season, but as the season went on and the outfits became more revealing, many people were commenting about her wardrobe.  So, I decided to compile screenshots of all of her outfits this season so you can judge for yourself.  Below are her outfits from each episode.  If you want to dig through comments of people complaining, you can scroll through the posts made to Food Network's Facebook Page (you have to scroll to each date that is a Sunday).


    Episode 1 - Two outfits - Nothing too revealing/controversial.



    Thursday, August 6, 2015

    Katie Lee Selling Home For $6.5 Million

    Photo - Sotheby's
    Food Network's Katie Lee has listed her Hamptons home on the market for $6.5 million.  The house has 6 bedrooms and 7.5 bathrooms and sits on approximately 2 acres of land and includes a pool and outdoor pizza oven.

    The Wall Street Journal said Katie Lee wanted to “downsize a bit,” but plans to stay in the area.  She was also quoted as saying, “I am working more and I want to simplify.  I have always enjoyed the process of renovating and decorating and I’m ready for my next project.”

    After Katie Lee's divorce with Billy Joel in 2009, she got their West Village apartment, which she later sold for $11.65 million (Link).

    Here is the real estate listing from Sotheby's, which has 23 pictures of the house if you are interested.  I guess it pays to have been married to a rock star.