Sunday, September 12, 2010

The Next Iron Chef

The Next Iron Chef, Season 3, begins on October 3.
Okay, I'll admit it. In my dreams, I compete in Kitchen Stadium.

If there ever was a chance for home cooks to battle it out in that venue, I'd be all over it. I recently went to a casting call for The Next Food Network Star (nothing came of it; let's not get excited) and in my far-fetched dreams, I was thinking that one of the biggest thrills of the competition would be to compete in the mini-Iron Chef challenge.

I'm really that much of an Iron Chef geek.

I know there's no chance I'd ever compete there outside my fantasies, but a girl can dream.

Meanwhile, reality says that there's a new Next Iron Chef competition coming up. The list of chefs is interesting: Marco Canora (Chef & Owner of Hearth, Terrior, and Terroir TriBeca, in New York), Bryan Caswell (Chef & Owner, Reef, Stella Sola, and Little Bigs, in Houston, Texas), Maneet Chauhan (Chef at Vermillion, in Chicago and New York), Mary Dumont (Executive Chef at Harvest, in Cambridge, Mass.), Duskie Estes (Chef & Owner of Zazu Restaurant + Farm, Bovolo, and Black Pig Meat Co., in Sonoma County, Calif.), Marc Forgione (Chef & Owner of Marc Forgione, in New York), Andrew Kirschner (Executive Chef of Wilshire, in Santa Monica, Calif.), Mario Pagán (Chef & Owner of Chayote and Lemongrass, in Puerto Rico), Celino Tio (Chef & Owner of Julian, in Kansas City, Mo.), and Ming Tsai  (Chef & Owner of Blue Ginger, in Wellesley, Mass.).

My immediate thought was that one chef was not like all the others. While some of the restaurants and chefs were sort of familiar to me, Ming Tsai is very familiar. He's had his own television shows. He has appeared on other shows. This is a guy who could probably walk into the Food Network and create his own show tomorrow. So why is he competing to be an Iron Chef?

Maybe it's not just me who thinks the show is cool. Maybe chefs think it is too - even famous chefs?

So folks, are you going to watch it? Are there any chefs that you're rooting for? Me, I'm rooting for Ming, but I'll have to see how the others stack up. I wasn't on the Michael Symon bandwagon initially, but since then I've come to really like they guy. And having him as a judge on The Next Iron Chef will make the show even better for me. I love his giggle.


Mike Benninger said...

I won't be watching one single second of this.

While I respect their skills, I am just SO BORED AND TIRED the Food Networks broadcasting nothing more than reality shows with contrived contests and drama and not food shows. Their programming is fake drama that has a bit of food in them, rather than the shows about food.

We need more Julia and less Ramsey!!More Good Eats and less Kitchen Nightmares!! I think that America's Test Kitchen is the BEST cooking show on TV anywhere and they focus only on food.

Anonymous said...

While I am -sort of - familiar with this show, I have not done TV to for >10 years. No matter the fame and the money, I don't think you want to be a "TV Chef," home style or any other. Unless the offer is an easy seven digits, run like hell! Kill the damn TV and bake more.

Donna Currie said...

I love Good Eats. There are a few shows I like because I get ideas from them, but the reality ones are for a different audience. To be honest, Iron Chef introduced me to a lot of ingredients and techniques that I had never seen before, and some of the food combinations are interesting. Some I'd never try, but sometimes there are gems. I don't think I could compete on Iron Chef, particularly not against the real Iron Chefs, but I think it would be a fun game against my peers. No TV show needed. I just want to play in that kitchen.

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