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Anyone familiar with the British TV show "Chef!", staring Lenny Henry? Henry played a British chef in a French restaurant in the English countryside. Excellent show. But I haven't seen it on American TV in years.

Anyone seen it recently?
I know you can get it on DVD.

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  1. Off and on they show it on BBC America. I sometimes wonder if Hell's Kitchen just takes the Chef kitchen scenes and turns them up to "11."

    1. I think this was discussed a LONG time ago, and recall that some people thought it was particularly over the top and unfunny.

      I had never heard of it, but recently purchased a DVD from a store going out of business, it being cheap enough to take a chance with. I have only watched two episodes so far, and thought it was hysterical. I too thought of Gordon Ramsay, and now wonder who influenced who.

      1. This is, without a doubt, my favorite food related show. I thought Lenny Henry was brilliant in it and the support cast as well. I wish our local PBS station would air it, but a think a snow ball has a better chance in H*ll than that happening.

        1. This is by far my favorite food related show! The episode where Chefs father is visiting has the best rant ever.

          1. One of my favorite shows!

            Lenny Henry not only starred in the show, he also developed the concept and Gareth Blackstock character.

            Interesting fact: If you watch the credits, you will find that John Burton Race did all the food for the show. He did the Food Network shows "French Leave" and "Return of The Chef".

            Another interesting fact: In one of the Harry Potter movies ( 2 or 3), Lenny Henry makes a cameo as the Rastafarian Shrunken head on the bus Harry is riding on.

            It is available on dvd from Amazon.

            1. My favorite episode is when 'roast beef' (Gareth) goes to France to participate in a chef's competition. Typical French English antipathies all worked up in good humour. English wine?

              3 Replies
              1. re: stonesoup

                I think the foodcompetition in France episode was my second favorite. My favorite was the one where he went in search of "real" Stilton and ended up getting arrested for buying black market Stilton. My third favorite episode was the one where Everton accidentally turned a crawfish or two loose in the kitchen during a visit from the Department of Health. Hilarity ensued.........

                1. re: DiningDiva

                  The "real Stilton" episode still gets quoted in our house regularly. The show was just f'ing brilliant (foodie brilliant, that is).

                2. re: stonesoup

                  I agree- this one was excellent. Thanks for reminding me!

                3. you can rent all chef! series from netflix

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: guabiroba

                    YES! That's what I did and just loved it. The first 2 seasons were better than the 3rd...but still worth getting all of them.

                  2. My hubby and I LOVED that show, and were so bummed when it disappeared. I loved every episode except the ones when he and his wife split up, and his adventures as a bachelor. She was so beautiful, and the perfect foil for him. Their banter and conflicts were just as interesting as his kitchen relationships. My favorite episodes involved the soused French chef - simultaneously hilarious and touching.

                    1. Gotta cast another vote for Chef! I loved the series and realized I was definitely out of my fun-loving 20s when I wanted to stay in and watch it on Friday nights here in Boston. Does anyone remember the lost (blue) bandaid episode? Oh Everton.

                      1. I did a search in the wind just to see if there were other Chef! fans out there. Glad to see there are. I love the show and watch the re-runs whenever I can. Great TV! I love to way his wife deadpans.

                        1. Best food related show ever!

                          1. Probably best thing Henry has ever done. Certainly captured much of the silly mood of "foodie Britain" at the time. IIRC, Henry spent time with John Burton-Race at L'Ortolan and the character was based around B-R's rants.