Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Reminder - Chopped After Hours Tonight

Photo - Food Network
Chopped After Hours, a web-series where Chopped judges face the same ingredient baskets that the competitors on Chopped have to deal with, will have its first episode online tonight.  As the new episode of Chopped is on at 10pm, it should be online at 11pm, and the judges will face the same ingredients those competitors had.  The episode will be available on the Food Network's Chopped website -> Link. (Update - it is available below now)

Tonight's Chopped After Hours says, "Alex Guarnaschelli hosts as Chopped judges Chris Santos, Marc Murphy and Aarón Sánchez attempt to conquer a basket featuring both fish and a chocolate candy bar."

Monday, April 29, 2013

Food Network May 2013 Programming Highlights

Iron Chef America Tournament of ChampionsThe Food Network has put out a press release detailing the programming in May on the channel and some of the highlights include: 
  • The Chopped All-Stars Finale on Sunday, May 5th.
  • Iron Chef America Tournament of Champions Starting Sunday May 5th
  • A Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives behind the scenes special on Saturday, May 18th at 10pm described as: "From pulling pranks to flubbing the standups, Guy is humor personified, and in this never-before-seen look into the show, viewers will laugh, cry and join in on the jokes with Guy on the road."

Sunday, April 28, 2013

Restaurant Impossible - Smitty's Restaurant Update

Smittys Restaurant Impossible
Photo - Food Network
Tonight on Restaurant Impossible, Robert Irvine and crew are going to Clearwater, Florida to help out Smitty's Restaurant.  The crew ends up having to use a lot of time and money on an exterminator in this episode which Robert has said could be the dirtiest restaurant he has ever done.  As I normally do with Restaurant: Impossible episodes, I searched around the Internet to read stories, comments and reviews about Smitty'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 and comments are post Restaurant: Impossible):

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Chef Wanted With Anne Burrell - Nikki Beach

Chef Wanted Nikki Beach
Photo - Food Network
Tonight is the season two finale of Chef Wanted with Anne Burrell, and Anne is hoping to find an executive chef at Nikki Beach in Miami, Florida.  They are looking for an executive chef for their new Ibiza, Spain location of Nikki Beach.  So, this is the last time this season you will hear Anne screaming a countdown from 10 to 1 and the same fake ticket printing noise played throughout the dinner services.  But despite the show not having much success with actually finding chefs to stay at the restaurant, it WILL be coming back for a third season in August (link).  I guess ratings are more important than anything.

Back to the Nikki Beach episode that airs tonight.  Let's just say there is some crazy stuff going on right now involving this restaurant.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Bobby Deen Got Engaged Today

Photo - Twitter
Bobby Deen and family announced that he got engaged today to Claudia Lovera.  Bobby tweeted "I'm so excited to share the news that she said "yes"! Claudia makes me a better person... and she is a great cook!"  Also, Paula Deen tweeted out "Y'all, please join me in congratulating Bobby on his engagement! Welcome to the family, Claudia!"  Both tweets also had the picture to the right (although it was sideways.)

Many people probably still think Bobby was still dating Katy Mixon (pictured below), who has been on Paula Deen shows with Bobby and is most known for her roles in Eastbound & Down and Mike  & Molly.  However, in February Bobby revealed that they broke up when she moved to Los Angeles, and that it was a hard decision.  So I guess he moved on pretty quickly.

Tyler Florence Filming With Ina Garten. Plus Giada De Laurentiis Lasagna Pan Recalled

Ina Garten Tyler Florence
Photo - Twitter
A few random bits of Food Network news for today.  Tyler Florence is currently filming an episode of Barefoot Contessa with Ina Garten in the Hamptons.  Tyler has said that he will be making fried chicken on the episode and has been posting pictures of the day on his Twitter page (like the one pictured to the right.)  So look for that episode to come during the new season of Barefoot Contessa, which begins its ninth season in June of this year.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Food Network Announces New Series for 2013

Rachael Vs Guy Kids Cook OffAt the Scripps Networks Interactive upfront today, the Food Network revealed 23 new series and specials that will air on the network in 2013.

Here are some things you have to look forward to (or not look forward to):
  • Robert Irvine driving a bus in a competition show where the winner gets a restaurant
  • Alton Brown hosting Cutthroat Kitchen, where chefs can spend money on themselves or sabotage other chefs in a competition.
  • A Supermarket Sweep knockoff called Grocery Games

Monday, April 22, 2013

Chef Marks The Spot - Another Food Network Pilot

Aliya LeeKong Chef Marks The Spot
Photo - AliyaLeeKong.com
Tomorrow night after Chopped at 11pm ET, the Food Network will be airing another pilot.  This one is called 'Chef Marks the Spot.'  The description of the show states: "Two chefs are taken to an unfamiliar college campus, where they are tasked with finding ingredients in the dormitories to create a meal in a makeshift kitchen set up in the school's gymnasium."

This pretty much sounds like the recent pilot of Kitchen Ambush, but this uses college dorms rather than people's houses for the ingredients.

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Restaurant Impossible - Old World Italian Update

Photo - Grand Strand Happening
Tonight on Restaurant Impossible, Robert Irvine is going to Murrells Inlet, South Carolina to help out the Old World Italian Restaurant.  The owners George and Theresa are apparently facing health and financial problems and do not trust their culinary-trained son, George Jr. to run the restaurant.  As I normally do with Restaurant: Impossible episodes, I searched around the Internet to read stories, comments and reviews about the Old World Italian Restaurant to get an idea of how the restaurant is doing since Robert Irvine visited, and here is what I found (note - all reviews and comments are post Restaurant: Impossible):

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Chef Wanted With Anne Burrell - Victor's Cafe

Victors Cafe New YorkTonight on Chef Wanted with Anne Burrell, Anne is hoping to find an executive chef for Victor's Cafe in New York City.   Victor's Cafe has been in business for 50 years without an executive chef, and they are hoping Anne Burrell can help with finding their first one.  This is the 2nd to last episode of this season, so maybe one of the next two episodes will actually have a chef staying at the restaurant.

There wasn't much info about this episode on the Internet, and Victor's Cafe hasn't really mentioned anything about it either.  Victor's Facebook Page has a lot of mentions of the celebrities that have eaten there, so maybe this is another case of a restaurant looking for more publicity.  Hopefully not, but I will update this post with the winner after the episode airs, and if the chef is still at the restaurant.

Food Network Star Season 9 Begins June 2nd

Food Network Star Season 9
Photo - Multivu
We knew Food Network Star would be returning in June, and now there is a press release to confirm its
return on June 2nd.  Same format with having the same mentors, but I noticed this year it didn't say the winner would get a show produced by their mentor after last years ordeal.  A new twist this year is an eliminated contestant will have the chance to come back for another chance at victory (sounds like the idea is taken from Top Chef).  Also, viewers will get to vote again this year for the winner.

I will link to the press release, with photos of the contestants and details of the changes for the show this year below.  However I wanted to take a look some of the contestants set to appear on the show.  You will notice a lot of recycled talent that have appeared on the Food Network or other shows.  Lets take a look:

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Food News - Good Eats to Return?, Bourdain Ratings, Rachael Ray Sued, and More

  • Alton Brown recently hinted that Good Eats would be returning.  On Twitter, a fan asked what happened to Good Eats, to which Alton responded - Hint Hint, "Your patience will be rewarded."  Also, from an IndyWeek article today, it states Alton "has good news for fans of his best-loved TV show: He'll be putting up a new web series later this year. Brown calls it "the evolution of Good Eats."  So it looks like when it does return, it will be a web series rather than on TV.
  • Anthony Bourdain's Parts Unknown is getting a lot of press for its ratings from Sunday Night's premiere.  It was the 'most watched cable news show' in a specific demo with 747,000 total viewers and 282,000 viewers in the 25-54 age group.  Not sure if that is deserving of all the good press when compared against other food and cable shows.  For example, Sunday in the same timeslot, Chopped All Stars had 1.80 million viewers, Restaurant Impossible at 10pm had 1.423 million viewers, and Cupcake Wars at 8pm had 1.158 million viewers (futoncritic).

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Dinner Bell From Restaurant Impossible Has Closed

Restaurant Impossible Closing
The Dinner Bell Restaurant in Madison, Tennessee, which was featured on Restaurant Impossible at the end of February, has closed their doors for good as of today.  This probably will not come as a shock to many as the Dinner Bell episode was one of the more controversial ones as of late.  The owner Tommy almost went to blows with Robert Irvine during filming, and also went to the local news to complain about the Restaurant Impossible experience (Original Update with info).

Monday, April 15th was their last day in business, and they posted the following message on their facebook page:

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Restaurant Impossible - Joe Willy's Update

Joe Willy's Restaurant Impossible
Photo - Joe Willy's Website
Tonight is the season six premiere of Restaurant Impossible, that has Robert Irvine going to Fishkill, NY to help out Joe Willy's Seafood House.  Joe Willy's food is apparently not up to par, and the failing business is causing family problems.  As I normally do with Restaurant: Impossible episodes, I searched around the Internet to read stories, comments and reviews about Joe Willy's to get an idea of how the restaurant is doing since Robert Irvine visited, and here is what I found (note - all reviews and comments are post Restaurant: Impossible):

Friday, April 12, 2013

Robert Irvine Trying Out A Live, Online Cooking Event

Robert Irvine Live Event
Photo - ChefIrvine.com
Food Network's Robert Irvine is going to try to have a live, online cooking event with his fans on Wednesday, May 29th.  There will be two different times for this event, which are 6:30 and 9:30 EDT.

The way it will work is you have to sign up for a StageIt account, and the first 500 people for each time will need to pay $5, with the remaining people paying $10.  Robert will send everyone who signs up a list of ingredients needed for the event.  You will then need to go out and buy those ingredients, and will use them during the cooking event to cook along with Robert.  The event is supposed to be 30 minutes of cooking, then 20 minutes of Questions and Answers.

Details from Robert Irvine's Website below:

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Chef Wanted With Anne Burrell - Blaue Gans

Blaue Gans
Photo - Yelp
Tonight on Chef Wanted with Anne Burrell, Anne is hoping to find an executive chef for Blaue Gans in New York City.  She is helping restaurateur Kurt Gutenbrunner in an episode called "Austrian Wirsthaus."  The season is almost over, so I will do these updates for the remaining episodes just to keep track of who actually wins and if they stay or even work at the restaurant.  The chefs competing tonight include:

Food Network Star Contestants Busy Opening Restaurants

Photo - Twitter
There has been a lot of recent restaurant news involving previous contestants from Food Network Star.  Here are some of the most recent highlights:

  • Season 7 contestant Vic "Vegas" Moea recently opened a restaurant in March named Vic's just outside of Las Vegas, Nevada.  A recent review raved about the food, while another review said the food was good, but service was not very good.

  • Season 8 contestant Philip "Ippy" Aiona also opened a restaurant in March named Three Fat Pigs in Waikoloa, Hawaii.  Fellow Food Network Star contestant Nikki Martin was also there to help with the opening and was working behind the bar as a beverage consultant.

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Alex Guarnaschelli Once Stole a Crab Leg From The French President (And Ate It In a Bathroom)

Alex Guarnaschelli
Photo - Food Network
With Alex Guarnaschelli releasing her first cookbook, she has been doing a lot of interviews and press lately to promote it.  In a recent article on NJ.com, she revealed that while working at Restaurant Daniel in New York City, she was tasked with preparing a 20-pound Alaskan King Crab for the French President right before the lunch rush.  After it was cooked, she helped herself to one of the crab legs and took it to the employee bathroom to eat it.

From NJ.com:
"And then there was the time she was presented with a 20-pound Alaskan king crab just before the lunch rush at Restaurant Daniel and was told to cook it for the French president, who was arriving in 45 minutes.

Monday, April 8, 2013

Alex Guarnaschelli's Cookbook Releases Tomorrow - Plus Book Tour Dates

Alex Guarnaschelli's first cookbook Old-School Comfort Food: The Way I Learned to Cook comes out tomorrow.  It has 100 recipes along with stories of how she learned to cook.  The best price I have seen for it is on Amazon, and it is already the #1 best seller in the book category 'Home Entertaining.'

Alex is also doing a book tour if you are interested in getting a copy her cookbook signed.  The dates and locations for her tour are below (via FN Dish):

Monday, April 8: New York City
Event: 4:30-7:30 p.m., Kraft Kulinary Event at Columbia University

Sunday, April 7, 2013

Chopped All Stars Preview - Starts Tonight

Chopped All Stars Episode 1
Photo - Food Network
Tonight is the start of Chopped: All-Stars, which will have five episodes Sundays at 9pm for five consecutive weeks.  The episodes will be Food Network vs. Cooking Channel, Mega Chefs, Chopped Judges, and Celebrities, and then the final with the winners of the first four episodes facing each other.  The contestants are playing for $50,000 for a charity of their choice.  The Food Network blog asked all of the contestants the same questions called '11 Things You Didn't Know About (Chefs Name)' which I have linked to below if you are interested:

Friday, April 5, 2013

Food Network's Kitchen Ambush Is Done

Kitchen Ambush, which had its pilot episode premiere on Sunday March 25th at 11:30am, and was replayed on Monday March 26th at 6pm, doesn't look like it will be turned into a series.  The first episode was a pilot with Alex Guarnaschelli and Robert Irvine competing against each other. 

I thought it was a pretty good concept that could have worked, and it seemed like most people on here liked it as well.  However, it appears the ratings were not good enough for the show to get picked up for a series.  Maybe it was due to the random times that it was on and the fact that there wasn't much advertising for the show.

On Twitter, Marc Summers, the producer of the pilot, was asked:

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Chef Wanted With Anne Burrell - Brasserie Coquette

Photo - Food Network
Tonight on Chef Wanted with Anne Burrell, Anne is trying to find an executive chef for Stacey and Kevin Jennings at their restaurant in Raleigh, North Carolina.  The episode is titled 'French Connection' and the show description states a restaurant 'French Brasserie,' but the restaurant they are at is actually called Coquette.  Coquette is located in the North Hills Mall in Raleigh.

Coquette is a part of the Urban Food Group, which has five restaurants in the North Carolina area.  All five of the restaurants have chefs listed on the Urban Food Group website.  An article from newsobserver.com said the Urban Food Group is also considering opening another restaurant in Tampa, Florida.

Does Chopped: All-Stars Promotional Video Give Away Two Finalists?

Chopped All StarsThe answer is Yes.  A reader of this blog sent in a tip regarding the 30 second commercial/promo for Chopped: All-Stars.  If you look closely at the video, you are able to determine two of the chefs that advance to the finals of Chopped: All-Stars.

SPOILER - Do not continue reading if you do not want to know!

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Giving You The Business - Another New Food Network Show

Giving You The Business Walter Bond
Photo Source - Multivu
The new Food Network shows keep on coming.  Giving You The Business is set to premiere Thursday, April 25th at 10pm where employees, selected by their CEO, are unknowingly competing to win their own food franchise.  They are filmed secretly during challenges that will be judged by their CEO, who will award the winner a franchise.  The show is hosted by Walter Bond, who is a former NBA player and a franchise owner.  My guess is the winners will be managing the franchise, not owning it.  Sounds like a take on Undercover Boss to me.

The past week had pilots for Kitchen Ambush, Can Dinner Save My Family, and Rebel Eats.  No word yet on if any of them will be turned into a series.  Giving You The Business will actually be a series as more than one episode has been filmed.

I also revealed that Iron Chef America: Tournament of Champions is coming in May and the Chopped: After Hours Web Series will start in late April.

Moss' Prime Rib From Restaurant Impossible To Close

Restaurant Impossible ClosingMoss's Prime Rib, which appeared on season 3 of Restaurant Impossible announced on their Facebook Page, that they will be closing on April 13.  The episode of Moss's Prime Rib originally aired in February of 2012 on the Food Network.  The owner was previously trying to sell the restaurant at auction in December of 2012, but it did not sell (link).

In a post from their Facebook Page, they stated:

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Chopped After Hours - New Web Series From Food Network

Chopped After Hours
Photo - Food Network
Ever want to see the Chopped judges face the same ingredient baskets that the competitors on Chopped have to deal with?  Now you will get your chance with Chopped After Hours, which is a web series set to air on the Food Network site.

From the Food Network Blog:
"They’ll cook against the clock in the same amount of time as traditional contestants, but among these friends and colleagues there will be as much eating, drinking and playful joking happening at each station as there is high-quality food preparation. None of the judges will settle for creating anything less than masterful meals, but they know well how to balance work and play — and will surely make time for a cocktail or two and even subject their fellow judges to a few hilariously timed interruptions."

Monday, April 1, 2013

Iron Chef America: Tournament of Champions - Coming in May

Iron Chef America Tournament of ChampionsIron Chef America will have a Tournament of Champions special series that will start on Sunday May 5th.  While nothing has been announced or advertised yet, I found it on the latest season's episode guide on the Food Network site.

The way it will work, is Alex Guarnaschelli will go against Geoffrey Zakarian in one first round matchup, with the winner moving on to face Michael Symon in the second round.