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Favorite Food Network Chef

Ok so Bon Appetit just listed Giada DeLaurentis as their readers favorite celebrity chef- I am inclined to agree- her food is simple but always tasty and has the right amount of delicious ingredients -good and not so good for you (I love cheese- its kind of my weakness!). So I want to know what all the chowhounds think- is she the best? Who do you like and why and for fun- who don't you like?

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  1. I am a fan of Barefoot Contessa because I like her presentations and her recipes always trun out great for me. But Giada is a close 2nd.

    4 Replies
    1. re: Suzie

      Me too. Ina Garten #1, then Giada.

      1. re: Suzie

        1: INA GARTEN 2: TYLER FLORENCE tied with GIADA I also like watching F.N. Canadians
        1: ANNA OLSON'S- Sugar 2: MICHAEL SMITH'S Chef at Home 3: LAURA CAULDER'S French Food at Home AND I LOVE: MING TSAI

        1. re: Suzie

          Ina Garten is a mouth breather. Literally. Not the best when you're wearing a mic.

          1. re: pdxgastro

            noticed that (again) yesterday watching her.
            plus tried her recipe for hard boiling eggs, completely undercooked raw-ish center, duh.
            I knew better but had to try (after all) 5 minute hard boiled eggs 'sounded' great :(

        2. giada and ina garten are tied for me. mario batali is 3rd

            1. re: Oh Robin

              I love Ina & Giada too. But am I the only one who hates it when Ina says "use good vanilla" and "how bad can that be?" Also I love Giada's cooking accessories. Little pink mise en place bowls and cute serveware.

              1. re: Oh Robin

                Ina lost a lot of points with me when she steamed some mussels open for a seafood salad, then drained them into the sink. What a waste of flavorful broth.

                1. re: sr44

                  Word, doesn't that drive you nuts? Also, when I make a batter, I scrape every single bit out of the bowl. Not just to prevent waste but makes for easier cleanup. You know who also scrapes well? Martha Stewart. Growing up in a big Polish family did her some good.

                  1. re: pdxgastro

                    Scraping, or the lack thereof, makes me wild.

                2. re: Oh Robin

                  "am I the only one who hates it when Ina says "use good vanilla". well in her defense, probably some use the standard imitation kind, thinking it won't really matter and how much difference can it make. I buy our childrens' vanilla when I know they're about to be out of vanilla. that way, they don't have to worry about spending their money on it but I know they have the best real stuff.

                  what drives me crazy is how she uses her teaspoon and dips it in dijon mustard jar then using same spoon she puts it directly into the salt bowl and then into the pepper. husband has even noticed and said, ''how good can 'that' be?''

                  1. re: iL Divo

                    America's Test Kitchen did a taste test with real & fake vanillas and couldn't tell the difference in baked goods. So this time around, I'm using fake.

                    1. re: pdxgastro

                      I know what Cook's declare but I can taste the fake vanilla in a hearbeat and I am not the Princess feeling the pea under the mattresses. Having said that, it does I agree, depend on what is cooked or baked. If the vanilla is hidden under chocolate or other bold flavors quality artificial vanilla is probably OK. In a custard or eggnog or any other strictly vanilla based recipie use the real thing.. cautions Choconutty.

                      1. re: pdxgastro

                        There is a huge flavor difference! I always use real extracts.

                3. I like Ina Garten, Nigella Lawson, and Giada DeLaurentiis. They are the three who consistently make food that 1) I actually want to eat, 2) that I would actually cook myself.

                  1. Well I miss Sara Moulton but like Ina the best and then Giada.

                    1. What is wrong with all of you?

                      Sandra Lee and Rachel Ray are the best chefs on food network HANDS DOWN!!!!

                      Hahaha.....just kidding....wanted to see if everyone was awake! :)

                      No, honestly, my favorite on food network is Alton Brown, but I feel a little funny calling him a chef. More teacher than chef, since the intent of most of his recipes is to teach.

                      I guess if I had to pick my favorite "chef-like" chef is Michael Chiarello (sp?). He has an odd personality, but I like to watch him cook. I like Giada and Ina Garten okay....their cooking is pretty good, but the way Giada over emphasizes her Italian words makes her hard for me to listen to and Ina has a very elitist attitude that bugs me and she gets way too excited about the alcoholic portion of EVERY meal she makes. Like their cooking, not crazy about their TV persona. Paula Deen's cooking shows are good....I like her recipes, but I feel like I can only make them on special occasions because of the butter content! Every recipe of her's that I've tried, though, I've liked.

                      I'm just glad no one has mentioned Emeril. I don't get his appeal at all.

                      14 Replies
                      1. re: sunshinedrop

                        Oh, and I forgot about Bobby Flay (thanx knoxymama for reminding me of him). He bugs me and my husband both. The bad attitude and the red hair give him this evil persona....I know it is silly, but really, he just seems to radiate evil for me. I like his recipes on his cooking shows (Boy Meets Grill, etc.), but on Iron Chef America, how many ways can that man make hash and use blue corn meal....the best moment on that show ever was when Bobby Flay used a bunch of truffles in something and one of the judges told him when someone uses truffles like that, she feels like she is being bought. I thought the wrath of Satan was going to shoot from his eyes! Great entertainment!

                        1. re: sunshinedrop

                          Well, given my history in boyfriends, that would make perfect sense. My taste in cooking is much better. HA HA HA!

                        2. re: sunshinedrop

                          Michael Chiarello does indeed have an odd personality. What a nice way to put it.

                          1. re: flourgirl

                            I like him, he's sometimes a little cranky? I do like him, he cooks nicely and his kitchen is way cool....

                            1. re: sianyoga

                              I always feels "we" are all too stupid, and much to much below the level of his cooking standards and what's up with the grey salt, get over it!

                              1. re: sianyoga

                                I find him pretentious, condescending and snobby. (And his catalog is overpriced too!)

                                1. re: flourgirl

                                  Yeah I bought some grey salt just to see what the hypes all about- it wasnt that good- super mineraly tasting!

                              2. re: flourgirl

                                I always think he's one of those people I would never want to work for. Doesn't take away from his culinary skills though.

                              3. re: sunshinedrop

                                Totally an Alton Brown fan! I find myself all of the time saying "learned that from Alton."

                                1. re: sunshinedrop

                                  I saw a snippet of Rachael Ray interviewing young sprite Miley Cyrus and she was horribly embarrassing. She tried to compare the 16 year old to herself, attempting to say she herself had 'verve'. Meanwhile, I have never seen Ray so bloated and miserable in my life.

                                  When will she be dismissed? i am amazed, to be sure. Meanwhile, I am plotting my own television debut... and why not?

                                  1. re: DallasDude

                                    dd -- " I have never seen Ray so bloated and miserable in my life."

                                    walk a mile in her shoes, i say. she's had some pretty serious health issues. i'd describe rachel as "spunky" more than "verve-y" -- though "verve" fits well enough. miley cyrus.....um...the word is....<oh, never mind>.

                                    but i sure am looking forward to your tv debut. when should we expect to see it? will you be featuring the theme from yellow submarine? lol!

                                    1. re: alkapal

                                      lol i will be sure to mention it on chow. In planning stages and actually met with the production company this weekend. I will be prepared to be beaten bloody here, it will not be very reverent, and certainly not Food Network. More Spike or Travel.

                                      And Rachael Ray is an easy target, but verve isn't a word I would use to describe her. More Jabba, less verve. And I have children, and think Miley is delightful. No one under a microscope is perfect, but I think the kid is doing a pretty nice job.

                                      1. re: DallasDude

                                        superb! best wishes for success and a long run!
                                        ps, i can assure you that you'll be well and truly beaten up if you do a show on "authentic" bbq! LOL!

                                  2. re: sunshinedrop

                                    I didn't like his "Emeril Live" shows because it was all about showmanship and not cooking instruction/information. I do like some of his shows in the 1/2 hour format - when he's calmed down and it's all about the food.

                                  3. I adore Michael. Most of his recipes turn out great and I love his entertaining ideas. I love Ina too. She rocks the house.

                                    I think Bobby is hot. Don't know about his cooking - but HE cooks. :)

                                    1. I am a big fan of Tyler's Ultimate, I like how it shows some different ways to make the same thing. Plus his recipes are simple and accessible. I often watch the show and then make
                                      (or incorporate an idea) the recipe within a few days.
                                      I really love to watch Giada (who doesn't), but her recipes often have too many ingredients that I don't normally have on hand.
                                      I haven't made many of Ina Garten's recipes, but the show is very relaxing to watch. I also enjoy watching Paula, but sometime her recipes make me a littel queasy. I'm a big fan of butter, but it's like she is getting sponsored by the butter makers of America.
                                      I wish they would bring Jamie Oliver back.

                                      1 Reply
                                      1. re: Lazy Susan

                                        I haven't enjoyed Tyler as much since he defected to CA.

                                      2. I used to like MING TSAI and still do! I wish Foodnetwork brings him back! (I think he is doing some shows in PBS, but not regularly). I also love Batali BACK THEN when he was in Molto Mario (or when he was still a chef and not a business man ;D) . Now I guess I like Giada and Ina the most (but feel less interested to be a frequest viewer)

                                        It is interesting to see that no one mentioned Emeril, yet he has the one of the highest rating shows on Food Network. I guess chowhounders do have a different "taste" than the general public, even when it comes to cooking show!

                                        3 Replies
                                        1. re: kobetobiko

                                          molto mario isnt on anymore? i loved molto mario. boo

                                          1. re: kobetobiko

                                            I used to like Ming Tsai until I tried his restaurant, Blue Ginger (MA). I had noodles--hard to mess up, especially with an Asian chef/owner. But I could barely manage a few bites before sending it back. Way too salty. The new dish of noodles they sent out was STILL too salty, but by then I was too drunk to care.

                                            And Mario is one of my favorites--I always feel like going to Mozza when I watch his show. Thank goodness I moved to LA, because now I can have his fennel sausage anytime I want :)

                                          2. I really enjoy George Duran of "Ham on the Street"; he's really quirky
                                            Alton, Giada, Nigella, Ina and Michael are all good.

                                            1 Reply
                                            1. If we are talking of the chefs that are currently on, I'd have to say Mario (malto mario I still think was one of the best efforts by FN for a straight cooking show). Althought Malto Mario is not on you can still see him on Iron Chef. Second would be Alton.

                                              If you are talking of all time, Sara, Mario, Tyler (his recipe on their site has been oustanding), Ming and Alton.

                                              3 Replies
                                              1. re: Soup

                                                Which Tyler recipes have been favorites? Looking for some new ideas...

                                                1. re: Siobhan

                                                  his ultimate potatoes au gratin is spectacular. every time i make this dish people are always asking when i will make it next. if you take it to a pot luck it will outshine the other dishes. make sure you use the recipe w/ the cabbage...there are two variations tyler uses.

                                                  1. re: Siobhan

                                                    Tyler's recipe for baguettes (makes four small or two large) is delicious and extremely easy to follow. I actually decided to try his recipe after reading all of the raves on his food. I'm glad I did! The bread was chewy on the inside with a satisfying light crunch on the outside. This was really quite easy, and I had piping hot homemade bread to serve with my dinner! I made the dough in my stand mixer, let rise two hours, formed loaves, two more hours to rise, brushed with milk, baked. Mmmmm. This is one that would work even for someone who has never baked bread before.


                                                2. does Chef Sakai from Iron Chef (japanese version) count? If, so he is my number one pick. What a rockstar! :)

                                                  my second would be Ina Garten for personality and good recipes.

                                                  I like Paula Deen's personality but am not really a fan of her recipes.

                                                  1. I also like Ina Garten alot, even if I am distracted by lusting after her house. I also love Alton Brown for completely different reasons. I totally get sucked in by Jamie Oliver's energy. Also for any fellow canadians out there, I like Christine Cushing's show.


                                                    1 Reply
                                                    1. re: daily_unadventures

                                                      I liked Christine Cushing's old show with Juan. Remember him? They had good energy and genuine laughs. I hardly watch Food Network anymore now that it's gone to reality type shows.

                                                      1. Alton Brown, hands down.

                                                        1. Ina, Nigella and Tyler - great personalities & user-friendly recipes

                                                          1. i also really like watching alton brown but his show is more about boosting someone's competence in the kitchen rather than showcasing recipes and being entertaining. although he is awesome to watch and i watch good eats at every opportunity.

                                                            oh yeah, I used to love love love naked chef

                                                              1. Nigella RULES!!!, ALton Brown, Rob Rainford for BBQing (also for canadians). And I have gotten some great tips from Jamie Oliver.

                                                                1 Reply
                                                                1. re: starlady

                                                                  Definately like Alton. He is a food scientist and very informational. I used to work for Micheal Chiarello and he is very egotistically and not nearly as nice in person as he appears on TV. I like barefoot Contessa, her food is real and elegantly prepared. I like the camera work on Giana's show. Her Italian is annoying. So I say Alton!

                                                                2. In no particular order: Flay, Florence, Garten, Chiarello, Brown. The "anything but cooking" stuff I pass on, though "Dinner Impossible" can be mildly interesting. But then, I'm a guy.

                                                                  1. I like Ina. Her show is relaxing and enjoyable. I've made her recipes and they always turn out well without being too difficult. There is one thing that drives me crazy about her and that's when she says "FAAAAAABULOUS". I've noticed that she only says it when she is with her friends. Please stop it, Ina. It's HORRRRRIBLE. Other than that, she is my favorite. And I love Jeffrey.

                                                                    8 Replies
                                                                    1. re: takeoutgirl

                                                                      What about when she says KAAAAH-shoes instead of cah-shoes? (cashews)

                                                                      1. re: Oh Robin

                                                                        Or "on-deeve" instead of "endive?"

                                                                        1. re: mothrpoet

                                                                          how is 'endive' pronounced properly ?

                                                                            1. re: gloriousfood

                                                                              and neither is en-dive. One's french, the other "American."

                                                                      2. re: takeoutgirl

                                                                        HAHAHAHA. You love Jeffrey? In my house when someone is in the kitchen making something that looks good, the other person will glance over and say, "Jeffrey's going to LOVE this."

                                                                        I love her food, except that it can be very rich sometimes, but her mannerisms (the heavy mouth breathing anyone?) and some of her catchphrases drive me cuckoo.

                                                                        1. re: ballulah

                                                                          Haha, that's hilarious ballulah about the Jeffrey thing. I'll have to do that when I'm with my sisters next month! I've also noticed the heavy breathing! I actually work in sound and don't understand why the sound editor doesn't take out all those breaths, so distracting! She does make some delicious meals.

                                                                          1. re: ballulah

                                                                            ballulah that just made me laugh out loud at work. Hilarious!

                                                                        2. no question here, Alton Brown!

                                                                          1. No question, my fave is Ina (Barefoot Contessa). I constantly cook her recipes and get rave reviews. I wish she did more shows!

                                                                            I also really like Bobby Flay. His shows are entertaining and he's great on tv.

                                                                            1. 1) Bobby Flay( I love to grill,and I love his attitude)
                                                                              2) Alton Brown( great, informative show)
                                                                              3) Paula Dean( im skinny, so I can eat any of her recipies, I also love butter)
                                                                              4) Giada( decent cook, great to look at)

                                                                              1. Alton Brown, hands down. He comes off as down to earth, clever, informed and genuinely passionate about food - not just a multi-media wannabe like certain other packed personalities on FN.

                                                                                1. Mario Batali. I like that he teaches about the dishes origins and why they eat what they eat there.

                                                                                  Alton Brown, although I really wouldn't call him a chef, is great with the whole food science thing. I've learned quite a few things from him.

                                                                                  Most of the best of FN are long gone. To bad, folks like Paula and Emeril were so much better when they were cooks, you know, before they became "personalities".

                                                                                  Warning: The following section contains male hormonally induced rantings; you've been warned!

                                                                                  Nigella and Giada - talented in the kitchen and they makes me feel all funny inside, like when I had to climb the rope in gym class.

                                                                                  1. Bring back Sara Moulton!

                                                                                    My favorite cooking show on TV is America's Test Kitchen but if I'm confined to Food Network, definitely Ina Garten. How easy is that?

                                                                                    1. Is it just me, or do a lot of Ina Garten's recipes seem just a little too basic? I feel like she's always saying something like "Now, everyone has a recipe for potato salad, but what makes mine really special, is that I like to add (pause) celery!" as if 90% of potato salad recipes don't have celery to begin with. I dunno. I like the Giada recipes I've made, and I really do like Nigella, though I'm kind of tired of watching her.

                                                                                      1. I love Ellie. She's down-to-earth, knowledgeable and cute, which makes her fun to watch. She always has great tips, and her recipes are wonderful.

                                                                                        1 Reply
                                                                                        1. re: katiepie

                                                                                          I didn't like her until I made her chocolate pudding pie. The recipe was so absolutely amazing, and I sort of got a sense of it from watching her put it together, that now I watch her with a new found respect.

                                                                                        2. I'm in the Ina camp too, I love her recipes..."and who would hate that?" Paula is fun, and I've brought some of her desserts to parties and people go nuts, but she is getting a little much, and keep the sons at home please. I actually like the Hardy Boys too. Super, easy recipes..are they still on?

                                                                                          1. Mario Batali taught me the most about cooking, so he's my favorite, hands down. I have to admit that I don't like Alton Brown's gimmicky presentations, although the info is good -- guess I'm a "just the facts" kind of person, and the hokey skits and weird camera angles annoy me. I do like Ina's recipes, and I have to admit that Giada also can cook, although I'm not sure she eats :-).

                                                                                            1 Reply
                                                                                            1. re: alaughingdog

                                                                                              I am pretty sure the only eating she ever does is the tasting we see her do on camera.

                                                                                            2. Ina (great recipes & setting) and then Alton Brown (the most interesting). Giada is excellent too, but I would have to go with the others first.

                                                                                              1. So its kind of interesting to see everyone's thoughts. I agree with most people that Alton can be a bit creepy- I bet he always got 1st place at the science fair as a kid! My husband is a big Bobby Flay fan, I do enjoy his recipes quite a bit- altho he really sticks to that southwest flair. His new throwdown show is fun to watch- thats where I got my latest fried chicken recipe- yum! Ina is so la-ti-da, I like her episodes when she is out and about, especially in Paris. Giada is still my favorite tho- I have never made a bad recipe from her- 2 of my faves are Porkchops Pizziaola (quick and yummy) and a salmon with pesto on puff pastry. Plus she is so into food- very passionate. Paula with her love of mayo makes me a little nauseated, but she is so sweetly southern you have to love her- and the recipes are usually just as good if you cut back on the fat content- except the desserts. A must try is her toffee butter cake- WOW! Now I know I will hear flack but I have to say that Racheal Ray is an amazing person- she has seriously made a HUGE name for herself, not to mention a TON of money! I think its refreshing she does not refer to herself as a chef, is never in a bad mood and I will say she makes some mean and delicious burgers. If you doubt try typing in Racheal Ray, burgers on the FN site and try a few out. My favorite is one with ground turkey, shallots, and havarti with dill cheese. So thats all I have to say- let me have it!

                                                                                                1 Reply
                                                                                                1. re: jme1beachbum

                                                                                                  I read somewhere that Alton actually did not do well in science as a kid, and started studying it when he started studying cooking, after his cinematography/drama/production early life.

                                                                                                2. Huge fan of Ina's. Love Giada too, although sometimes her demonic smile creeps me out. Not a big Paula fan (I feel bad saying that--she seems like a nice person) but her banana pudding with Chessman cookies is to die for.

                                                                                                  1. One big vote for Cat Cora. She is HOT!


                                                                                                    1. Oh, the good old days when we had "The Galloping Gourment" - ....... I used to watch him as a curiousity when I was a kid

                                                                                                      8 Replies
                                                                                                      1. re: Abacus

                                                                                                        I learned to cook watching the Galloping Gourmet....

                                                                                                        I was pleased when FN aired himn (Graham Kerr) a few years back

                                                                                                        1. re: sianyoga

                                                                                                          I also watched him when I was growing up (my Grandma was a big fan). The other favorite from way back when was Jeff Smith, the Frugal Gourmet. Still use his cookbooks frequently.

                                                                                                          1. re: Paladar

                                                                                                            Graham just launched a prepared foods company called Day to Day with finacial backing. He developed the recipes and menu with the assistance of a chef from j&w. It is a healthy foods service. He says that the seasoning is the key to delicious low cal/low fat/good for you foods. The company is WA state based but hopes to expand to 25 state locations within the year and then up to 2,500 national locations- looks promising. He is coming out of semi retirement for it.

                                                                                                            1. re: Paladar

                                                                                                              Me too. The first cookbook I ever bought myself was The Frugal Gourmet (and I turned 21 a couple of months after buying it, so my mother bought me The Frugal Gourmet Cooks With Wine). It still go back to those old books for my chicken piccata and pork with wine and grapes recipes. I miss that crazy old perv.

                                                                                                              1. re: Avalondaughter

                                                                                                                This has to be the funniest post I've read on chowhound thus far, I still refer to those old books for recipe's as well.

                                                                                                                1. re: Avalondaughter

                                                                                                                  Had a bunch of his books. When we found out he was an "old perv" they all went to Goodwill.

                                                                                                                2. re: Paladar

                                                                                                                  yes Jeff SMith, my all time favorite TV chef

                                                                                                                  use to love Yan can cook as well...

                                                                                                            2. Nigella Lawson (though the producers and camera operators on the new show need to be replaced) is my favorite to watch. I like her style.

                                                                                                              1. I actually love Jamie Oliver and miss him - I also am a big big fan of Anthony Bourdain - true, he's on Travel now.....

                                                                                                                2 Replies
                                                                                                                1. re: sianyoga

                                                                                                                  Did you see that srhow Tony Bourdain did in Russia, with the lady cooking the borsht, he is histerical!!! There is not way any of us would try the things he eats. And skinny as a rail!

                                                                                                                  1. re: sianyoga

                                                                                                                    excellent call on Anthony Bourdain...

                                                                                                                  2. BTW. Emeril Lagasse is way cool....

                                                                                                                    1. Ina actually bothers me. I want to like her, but can't. Folks on this board call her show 'relaxing.' I think it's a little boring. She's so breathy and seems fake when she hugs her friends. Bobby Flay seems like he'd be fun to have a beer with while grilling. Mario so obviously loves food that he's entertaining. I wish the 'Next Food Netowkr Star' winner, Guy Fieri, had a show at a decent time. I liked him during the competition and would like to see what's become of him, but I'm never watching TV at 10am.

                                                                                                                      1. Bobby Flay all the way, then Duff

                                                                                                                        1 Reply
                                                                                                                        1. re: Flortilito

                                                                                                                          I was just about to say everyone's forgetting Duff!

                                                                                                                        2. I'm with you on the Bobby Flay front.

                                                                                                                          1. Tyler, Barefoot and Giada. I also like Nigella and was excited when I heard that she was going to be a part of the Food Network family but I've only caught her show once. Time slot is horrible - Sunday, 1PM, right?

                                                                                                                            1 Reply
                                                                                                                            1. re: girlygirl

                                                                                                                              That's my top three, too! Tyler's cookbook has soooo many good things in it.

                                                                                                                            2. Ina, for sure....I simply can't stand her giggle/laugh anymore though..almost like it's put on or something...Anyway, have all her cookbooks and have made many many recipes from them...all turning out fantastic. Some have become favourites like her recipe for Beef Tenderloin..it's perfect every time!! Love that!!

                                                                                                                              1. I didn't think that there were any more chefs on FN.

                                                                                                                                1. Mario or Alton, depending on my mood.

                                                                                                                                  1. I guess I'm an old-timer when it comes to the FN. I loved Cooking with Sara Live on many different levels. One she is who she is, no need to be an entertainer while cooking and come up with a gimmick. Sara came with great credentials, an actual chef versus some of the other personalities. I used to like David Rosengarten's show where he featured 1 item and focused on the history, recipes. I liked Mario but found him stiff on air and very outgoing in person though he has become more relaxed overtime.

                                                                                                                                    I am not a huge fan of Mexican or Southwestern cuisine so I didn't watch Bobby Flay that much. He has evolved from having to have a facilator on with him on air to find his own persona.

                                                                                                                                    My feel also is that Paula Deen is being groomed to take over Emeril's 8 p.m. slot

                                                                                                                                    The food network's prime audience now, the demographic are males from 15 to 30. The audience focus is younger and for the female stars to have more clevage.

                                                                                                                                    I think Alton is skilled and entertaining. Ina is stylish and sleek. The only thing I do watch is America's Iron Chef from time-to-time seeing how the guest chefs operate and what they create. Some stuff from behind the scenes on Iron Chef is the guest chefs are given 5 items that they can be working with and have to submit the recipes before hand. So in essence they do and don't know what will be there.

                                                                                                                                    1. I love Alton Brown. Smart and nerdy and kinda cute, but he knows alot about food. I find the cheesy-ness of the show really entertaining and informative.

                                                                                                                                      1. i like ina, wish they'd tape some new episodes with her. giada, mario, bobby are all outstanding chefs. alton is interesting yet semi annoying, and someone needs to tell him he's NOT winnie the pooh (oh bother)...altho they all have frequently used cliches that they "bring to the party". i guess it comes with the territory, some are easier to choke down than others. oh yes and as long as it was mentioned, ina uses en-deeve vs endive cos that's how it's technically pronounced.

                                                                                                                                          1. I like Giada, even if she says things like "spa-ghit-ti!". And Ina's cool too, though too Jeffrey-crazy. Frankly, I want to eat what those two make.

                                                                                                                                            I see lots of Paula votes. She's fairly new to Food Network Canada, and I'm not warming up to her.

                                                                                                                                            I really like Bob Blumer of "The Surreal Gourmet". His stuff is tasty and creative; I dig that. I wish he'd come out with another show, as Surreal Gourmet is definitely on its way out of rotation.

                                                                                                                                            Alton Brown is incredibly educational, but there's something about him I can't get into.

                                                                                                                                            I want to have a pint with the Ace of Cakes guy.

                                                                                                                                            1. AB all the way - he's funny, informative, and cute as a button. Plus the couple of times I've met him, he's been humble, engaging, and very nice.

                                                                                                                                              The only other show I find DVR-able is Nigella, although I do enjoy Ina, Michael Chiarello and Giada.

                                                                                                                                              1. Mario Batali, Ina, and Giada are definitely my favorites. I quite enjoy what Michael Chiarello does on his show, too.

                                                                                                                                                1. why isn't any asian chef on food network, chinese , japanese, karen ......

                                                                                                                                                  2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                  1. re: monkfanatic

                                                                                                                                                    I know...i feel like everything's either Italian food or barbecue 24/7. I like Sara Moulton's show which still airs during the day, I believe. Nice array of guests doing their thing--always learn something new.

                                                                                                                                                    1. re: traceybell

                                                                                                                                                      Don't forget the cakes. There are an abnormally large number of shows about cakes.

                                                                                                                                                  2. Ming Tsai used to have at least one show on there, called East Meets West. I was probably.. 13 or 14 at the time and used to wake up at 8:30am on weekdays occasionally in the summer just to catch his show. This was probably back in 2001 or 2002.

                                                                                                                                                    now it's on some digital cable channel i have at my apartment and well.. I don't know why I thought it was so good back then..heh.

                                                                                                                                                    1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                    1. re: scott.

                                                                                                                                                      I miss Ming, he is such a hottie...he and Tyler can heat up my kitchen anytime. I will have to see what digital cable channel he is on now.

                                                                                                                                                      Ina, Big Head and Alton are my FN favs though Ina and Big Head can be irritating. But no one beats Jaques Pepin on PBS. Sure miss Julia.

                                                                                                                                                    2. I can watch, and at least be entertained by all the personalities on FN except:

                                                                                                                                                      1) The Hearty Boys
                                                                                                                                                      2) Sandra Lee
                                                                                                                                                      3) Rachel Ray

                                                                                                                                                      1. Bob Blumer is coming back in March with a new show called Surreal Gourmet!!

                                                                                                                                                        1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                        1. For the recipes Everyday Italian with Giada is the best. Everything I have made of her is super good and not terribly unhealthy. I find her personality to be a bit grating though.
                                                                                                                                                          For sheer entertainment I LOVE Paula, but I could never bring myself to serve such high fat dishes. Butter and may-naze are good, but don't need to be in every meal.
                                                                                                                                                          I also really enjoy Bobby Flay. Something about cocky chefs...

                                                                                                                                                          1. Anyone who comes to battle on Iron Chef!
                                                                                                                                                            Love watching Alton for the education, even with the bad jokes and quirkly camera work
                                                                                                                                                            I'll watch Paula and wish I could eat her desserts, but won't make them.
                                                                                                                                                            Does anyone else hate the new shows they had to create for the winners of those competitions to host your own show? Guy's Big Bites and the two guys the act like caterers? Those are the worst. One step below SLOP.

                                                                                                                                                            1. Does anyone remember laughter - or David Rosengarten??

                                                                                                                                                              I loved this guy! He had the drollest sense of humor. Sure, some found him a bit haughty - even condescending at times, but he had that nice boy/bad boy twinkle in his eye, and more genuine personality than most of the "personalities" on the Food Network today. I watched nearly every episode of "Taste," bought the cookbook, and even did the recipes. What did him in was that unfortunate foray into the game show where contestants had to guess what 5 ingredients were in any given dish. Why? He also knows more about wine and conveys the info in a down to earth, unpretentious way...and even when was acting pretentious, I got the sense that he was - acting.

                                                                                                                                                              I think he really knew how to connect with his audience, whether he was doing a dish with foie gras or making an egg cream. We need more personalities like that.

                                                                                                                                                              1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Rosetta

                                                                                                                                                                I remember him, he was sort of compelling and sort of annoying simultaneously. I found him a bit difficult to watch, actually.

                                                                                                                                                              2. Alton Brown--genius
                                                                                                                                                                Giadi D---food porn....love it!
                                                                                                                                                                Anthony Bordain....james dean of cooking
                                                                                                                                                                Christine Cushing....amazing....

                                                                                                                                                                most others annoy me at best

                                                                                                                                                                1. mario batali and alton brown are the only ones left for the real foodies. i'm sure you'll be able to catch them with anthony b. and the Travel Channel PERMANENTLY in the future. or you can stay with the 'food' network and decorate your soul with sandra lee and RR...all for about $40!

                                                                                                                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: napolean

                                                                                                                                                                    is travel channel still exist, it's been gone a long time on my cable

                                                                                                                                                                  2. Giada in HighDefinition is even better. : )

                                                                                                                                                                    Gotta love Food NetworkHD on a HD, 42" Flat Panel LCD...

                                                                                                                                                                    Unfortunately Sandra Lee scares me even more in high def....

                                                                                                                                                                    5 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: swsidejim

                                                                                                                                                                      Oh My, watching FN w/Sandra Lee behind the scenes. The lemon show where she planned the entire show based on a lemon shirt she found at a flea market is truly scary. Why this woman has been given a cooking show is unbelievable. Her show is total nonsense and a waste of time.

                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: ChefGirl412

                                                                                                                                                                        There is a market for her, sadly. My SIL loves her....but then again, my SIL loves anything "pretty" and "trendy" and not too intellectual. I think the first three syllable word I heard her say was "tablescape". This is the woman that told me when I wrote a reading for her wedding to not use too many big words that she wouldn't understand. So, that is Sandra Lee's demographic. Apparently, there are enough clones of my SIL to keep her on TV. Sandra Lee is pretty and popular and skinny and half drunk most of the time, so she should be the perfect guru, right?

                                                                                                                                                                      2. re: swsidejim

                                                                                                                                                                        Is Food Network available and filming in HD? This is news to me. I've got a 50" and since buying it have discovered PBS has way better food shows, and they're in HD.

                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: NovoCuisine

                                                                                                                                                                          Yes, I have Dish Network, and the Food Network HD is a totally seperate channel than the standard Food Network channel,

                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: swsidejim

                                                                                                                                                                            Dammit, Canadians always get screwed.. can't seem to find any availability for it up here.

                                                                                                                                                                      3. Batali on the old Molto cooking shows first for his knowledge of the history, geography, and cultural understanding of Italian food. Second, Alton Brown because I usually learn something. Of the newer people, Giada seems to have genuine passion for cooking.

                                                                                                                                                                        1. EMERIL!!!! and Bobby Flay too

                                                                                                                                                                          1. I think I like the chefs who appear to really, really know their stuff -- amazing cooking chops -- and with personalities that aren't annoying.

                                                                                                                                                                            To that end, I'd have to say my favorites are Mario, Tyler, Alton, Ming.

                                                                                                                                                                            I like watching Giada's show in HD for the cinematography / look-and-feel of the show -- I like that it has a really fresh feel to it -- but I don't find the content too interesting. Also, am I the only one who gets bothered when she starts sentences which don't really have an ending, so she always ends them in something like, "it's SOOOOO good"? Not that I could ever attempt to improv a whole show in front of a camera -- but still.

                                                                                                                                                                            I have seen exactly one episode of Charlie Trotter's show (maybe it was short-lived?) and that guy has a scary amount of knowledge about food. The episode was good as a one-off, but I'm not sure if I'd like it on a recurring basis.

                                                                                                                                                                            Emeril knows his stuff, but these days there's too much Bam. I used to like the early episodes of Emeril much more.

                                                                                                                                                                            By far the most "entertaining" show for me to watch is Ace of Cakes. I fall out of my seat laughing, every time. Not so much for the chow prowess ("chowess?") -- in fact I have to overlook the fact that half of the "cake" is usually made of pipe or wood or something -- but those guys just have hilarious chemistry. Especially Geof and Mary Alice.

                                                                                                                                                                            There are some shows I have never really watched, so I can't say if I would like them -- Jamie Oliver, Nigella, Barefoot Contessa.

                                                                                                                                                                            My pet peeves: Bam!, E-V-O-O, blue corn.... you know what I mean. :)

                                                                                                                                                                            2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Chris Mitra

                                                                                                                                                                              I'm only aware of two seasons of Charlie Trotter's show "Kitchen Sessions". One of the PBS stations here in Chicago airs it every weekend. The set he filmed the show on is built inside his restaurant so it's a good bet he'll film another season sometime.

                                                                                                                                                                              When I first started watching FN, I was a HUGE Emeril fan! I had always enjoyed cooking, but he inspired me to take it to the next level and go to culinary school. Problem is that as I learned more I began to realize that a lot of the information he put out was just plain wrong. These days the only FN shows I try to watch are Good Eats because Alton is in to the science side of food like I am and Party Line because they are caterers and I have been able to use several of their recipes when cooking for groups of people.

                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: LabRat

                                                                                                                                                                                I vote for Nigella and Jamie Oliver. Cause I am from mediterranean.... I love Ina too..

                                                                                                                                                                            2. Ina Garten, Giada Di Laurentiis, Tyler Florence and Nigella Lawson. Comfortable presence and good recipes.

                                                                                                                                                                              1. I used to love to watch the two fat ladies.

                                                                                                                                                                                1. So tired of seeing the same old lame-o italian recipes. Seems like all the food network promotes is italian food. There are alot of other cuisines that deserve to be featured and are not. thai, vietnamese, indian, portuguese,etc...... Diversity is creative and unfortunately the food network has neither.

                                                                                                                                                                                  5 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Bengaliwife

                                                                                                                                                                                    you are totally right, being chinese , been watching food network for so many years , and chinese food is the most popular food beside american food , but they don't devote any show to chinese food , very disponitted.

                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: monkfanatic

                                                                                                                                                                                      Agree. FN's travel shows seem to be restricted to U.S. and Europe (mostly Italy), and not Asia or S. America. I miss Ming Tsai's "East Meets West" but at least it's now in reruns on Fine Living.

                                                                                                                                                                                      Another FN fave was "My Country, My Kitchen". The first show followed cookbook author Mai Pham back to her roots in Viet Nam. Chefs in subsequent shows included Michele Bernstein (Argentina) and Maya Kaimal (India). Fascinating series, too bad it cancelled.

                                                                                                                                                                                      "Taste" with David Rosengarten was great. He inspired me to explore serious cooking. As far as who I like now...Alton Brown. He gives a perspective of things I never realized. Like when he equated polenta with grits(!)

                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Ulua

                                                                                                                                                                                        I made polenta for my family the other night and the first thing that came out of my grandmother's mouth when she looked at it was, "Is 'polenta' some fancy schmancy word for grits?"

                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: NovoCuisine

                                                                                                                                                                                          That's funny! And I think she's right.

                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Ulua

                                                                                                                                                                                            no, it's a fancy-schmancy word for cornmeal mush!

                                                                                                                                                                                  2. Ina and Giada (in that order) are my favorites. I like Nigella, but I haven't really watched her show much, but did love her Chefography. I have no interest in any of the others at all. Can't stand Sandra Lee or Paula Deen. Just love the style and elegance (casual though it may be) of Barefoot Contessa and Giada's shows. I'm new to these boards and since I have a new baby, I spend a lot of time watching daytime TV (sigh) while feeding her.

                                                                                                                                                                                    1. If anyone says Emeril Lagasse you should be ashamed of yourself. I hate me some Emeril and his overhyped crappy food. I do love Tyler Florence, he's got talent and is really nice to look at.

                                                                                                                                                                                      3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: chinkymonkey

                                                                                                                                                                                        I heart Tyler Florence..but i love Giada and Ina Garten the best!

                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Liskypisky

                                                                                                                                                                                          Tyler Florence - eye candy (to use culinary term) ;)

                                                                                                                                                                                        2. re: chinkymonkey

                                                                                                                                                                                          I think Emeril is great -- so there! :)

                                                                                                                                                                                        3. 1. Bobby Flay
                                                                                                                                                                                          2. Emeril
                                                                                                                                                                                          3. Alton Brown
                                                                                                                                                                                          4. Robin Miller
                                                                                                                                                                                          5. Paula Dean

                                                                                                                                                                                          7 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: KSFTVFan

                                                                                                                                                                                            Who is Robin Miller?
                                                                                                                                                                                            Canadian here, so we don't get a lot of the same programming, but at least I have heard of Paula Deen and Sandra Lee.

                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: starlady

                                                                                                                                                                                              Here she is: http://www.foodnetwork.com/food/show_...

                                                                                                                                                                                              Her schtik is to plan ahead and prep for the whole week, often using leftovers for new recipes. I personally haven't found anything of hers that I'd want to make.

                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: mojoeater

                                                                                                                                                                                                Why is there such a conspicuous absense of Robin Miller's show on this site? I'm not sure how I feel about that show. I find myself doing some of the things she does. My husband thinks it's dangerous and is concerned about some food safety issues on the show. Silly.

                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: southernitalian

                                                                                                                                                                                                  I haven't used a lot of her specific recipes, but I do employ the method of preparing multitasking ingredients for several meals at once. She is like the Katie Couric of FN.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: ArikaDawn

                                                                                                                                                                                                    She IS the Katie Couric of the FN. She's very much like her. What specific multi-tasking methods do you employ?

                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: southernitalian

                                                                                                                                                                                                      Well, I cook for only two, but tend to buy in larger quantities for the savings. For starters, when pulling meat out of the freezer, rather than doing it every morning, I will get out enough for about three days at a time and this allows me to let the meat, typically bnls sknls chicken breasts, really get a good long marinade which is essential for moistness and flavor in what can easily be a drab entree. When getting a pork tenderloin, which both me and my SO really like, I will get one double the size we need, obviously grill it all off at once, we eat about half at dinner, and the rest gets shredded for divine pulled pork sandwiches the next day. I'll do things like when grilling BBQ chicken breasts I will grill a couple extra for chicken salad at lunch the next day and BBQ chicken pizza the next night for dinner. When I bake potatoes, only sweet potatoes in my house, but any potato really, I will always do an extra for an easy mashed potato at dinner the next night or even potato pancakes at breakfast. We LOVE fresh pineapple, but with only two of us a whole pineapple is quite a lot so to justify the prep and cost I will use some for hawaiian chicken and maybe the following day use the remainder in a dessert flambe. When roasting peppers, which I don't particularly enjoy, I will typically do at least a couple more than I eed and incorporate into various pastas, omelette's, pesto, etc. because to have it available in so many dishes justifies the prep. I don't enjoy. Oh, and I ALWAYS grill extra veggies when I am grilling veggies because they can literally be used in ANYTHING. It's really just common sense stuff that I am sure MANY homemakers do, but she is one of the only FN personalities to highlight it which I appreciate.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. re: southernitalian

                                                                                                                                                                                                    Just curious, what methods does your husband find unsafe?

                                                                                                                                                                                                    I dont really love her show, but I have never seen anything that seemed unsafe.

                                                                                                                                                                                            2. My vote's with Ina Garten.

                                                                                                                                                                                              I love her natural and relaxed style as an on-air personality. I enjoy her simple recipes [she's one of the few TV chefs whose books I buy]... and finally, as an Interior/Set Designer, I can't help but appreciate the overall Art Direction of the show and the way it's shot and edited. The sets and scenery are enjoyable to look at, while not distracting the viewer from the food and host.

                                                                                                                                                                                              Most importantly, though, I've learned a lot about the basics of cooking from Ina -- from both her show and her books. I hope she'll be around for a long time.

                                                                                                                                                                                              2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: cava_girl

                                                                                                                                                                                                Good choice, also Tyler Florence...but it seems to be the same old shows and cuisines..Italian and such.....love to see Chinese, Thai, Vietnamese

                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: cava_girl

                                                                                                                                                                                                  I think the people who do her show are the same one's who did The Naked Chef and The Two Fat Ladies.

                                                                                                                                                                                                2. Bobby Flay is the living, oozing, greasy definition of smarmy...every time I see him I feel the need to take a shower

                                                                                                                                                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: jungleboy

                                                                                                                                                                                                    Mario Batali
                                                                                                                                                                                                    Tyler Florence
                                                                                                                                                                                                    Bobby Flay

                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. I have been paying attention to this thread for a while and actually feel more educated since reading everyone's responses. I now think that my favs are-
                                                                                                                                                                                                    Mario Batali
                                                                                                                                                                                                    Bobby Flay( I know there is a dislike but I have been showing his iron chef challenges to my cooking students and he has grown on me)
                                                                                                                                                                                                    Alton Brown
                                                                                                                                                                                                    Ina Garten( I did not like her previously but I am in love now*)
                                                                                                                                                                                                    and a cute old school Paula Dean- not the new show

                                                                                                                                                                                                    A new favorite not on the channel is Anthony Bourdain- I had a hard time ready his book at first but now have a new respect for him and his point of view.

                                                                                                                                                                                                    7 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: natalie.warner

                                                                                                                                                                                                      I think this thread is interesting, because as foodies, (and we all must be or why would we all be reading/posting on Chowhound) aren't we all interested to see what Food Network will bring us next in the way of information and entertainment. I know if I am home, my TV is on Food Network . . .I love it, and it is safe programming to have on while my 5 year old plays in the room while I am making dinner. At 5, he even has certain shows he prefers and Alton Brown is hands down the winner in his book. Smart kid, makes me proud.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      I guess my point is . . .like most of you, I am a huge foodie and wino. I love to cook and have made food my personal hobby, my quest, my passion. But as much as I watch and enjoy most of the shows on Food Network, I am always left feeling like . . .okay, now what? I know that already . . .give me more. Take me to the next culinary level.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      I am not a chef, and have no formal training, but I want more than EVOO, chiffonading basil, tempering eggs and grilling and chilling . . .and looking at Tyler's cute . . .well, everything.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      I want proper chef grade knife skills, I want to know how to clean and de-bone a fish, a squid or whatever else is in season. I want to know how to grow my own tomatoes and can them for the winter . . . I want to remember old traditions and tools, and I want the latest gadgets . . .I want to feel like I have traveled to really unique far-away places on foodie adventures (Anthony Bourdain's show ROCKS as does he), not just watching Rachel in Italy on her $40 a day, I want to learn real international dishes from all over the world, and I want to learn about the traditions around the dish, how they are served and when and how they are eaten and where I can buy the stuff to make it in my town. I want to be culturally educated and visually stimulated through food. I want to make the dish and feel like I have visited that country.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      Dear Food Network, I want you to take it up to NOTCHES UNKNOWN! I am ready. Most of us are ready for what's next . . .Keep How to Boil Water and Cooking 101 for Food Network 2. Your brand is going to need to diverge and split to satisfy the new generation of foodies that will have been raised watching your network. They will demand more of you than pop culture, niche cooking shows and how to make leftover magic.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      Let's hope they hear us . . .that one gal . . . the Food Network, Marketing executive with the long brown curly hair, she gets this. Trust me . . .it's on her desk in a folder marked: "What the *&%# is Next!"

                                                                                                                                                                                                      That being said here is what I would say to each of the Food Network Chefs:

                                                                                                                                                                                                      1) Emeril - Our Godfather, enough already. Cancel Emeril LIVE! we're over it and so are you. Stick to a format that is a better demonstration of your true skills and personality with The Essence of Emeril. Subtle is a good thing, it really works for you too, dear.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      2) Bobby Flay - Love you on Boy meets Grill, love to see you shop the gritty streets of NYC for inspiration, want to live in your house/studio.The hard corners of your personality soften at the edges on this show and in this environment. Other than that, I wouldn't want to work for you, marry you, or do your dry cleaning for you. I would have to smack you. A lot. Hard.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      3) Rachel Ray - You go, girl! From the start you were going to be a star because of your mass appeal, you have broken out, have your Martha/Oprah empire built, please leave my Food Network, you have outgrown them and we have outgrown you.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      4) Tyler Florence - Hang in there, Dude! You are their ace in the hole, the jack of all trades . . .you can do anything and make is seem tasty and interesting and all about the FOOD. You do know you are gorgeous, right? I mean women (& men) would throw their panties on your chopping block for you to cook something in their kitchen, if you know what I mean. You will find your vehicle, by the way, green bricks looks nice on the new set.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      5) Alton Brown - Keep up the good work, you are on the right path. You are our Zen-master of Flavor and you teach us your culinary Chef-stuff in a way we can all understand it, and do three other things while we are watching your show. You are misunderstood, your show is not a cooking show. I do NOT want to eat your dishes, I want to try your techniques. I heart food geeks like you, you really do it for me.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      6) Giada De Laurentiis - You come from good Hollywood stock, you are beautiful and you have the culinary talent and experience to back it all up. You might be the full package. I see them trying to move you into the footsteps of Rachel Ray with similar and multiple programs. Watch out! Don't become the emcee of your own culinary career, remember hosts are a dime a dozen . . .ask yourself where is Cissy Biggers today?

                                                                                                                                                                                                      7) Ina Garten - You have a gorgeous house, fantastic friends a loving husband and you cook delicious dishes that look sophisticated, and taste like they took all day to make, but in fact were really quite easy. The eternal hostess with the mostess. I want to come and stay in your Bed and Breakfast you need to open in the Hamptons. I feel rich just watching your show.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      8) Paula Deen - You have your accent and your southern charm. I bought your cookbook and was disappointed to find it was full of every dish my Momma had already taught me how to cook. When I need a W.T. recipe for turdurken stuffed with cream cheese, I'll call you. P.S. Your husband needs to be on his boat, not on your show. He makes me uncomfortable, because he is so uncomfortable. Bless his heart, let him be.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      9) Sandra Lee - Remind again what your talent is? I don't get or respect you, your food, your philosophy or your math (75% store bought, 10% from my fridge and 45% fresh ingredients = 130% LAZY). When I do find myself sucked in, it is to laugh at what you are wearing . . .did you channel a 70's porn star look today or are we pretending to be June Cleaver in a pink twinset. Crazy Aunt Sandy loves her cocktails that no-one should be caught dead holding, much less drinking. Tablescapes are what you did in your previous life, and perhaps what you should go back to doing.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      10) Guy Fieri - Man, watch out! Don't let them give you a sucky show, cancel it and then make us wonder where you went to like the Hardy Boys. I see they FINALLY have brought you back with the Diners & Drive-ins, love watching you eat a burger and doing your chefy-thing - the ultimate corn-dog was fun to watch how excited you were creating it on the fly. Your own show, although a little over the top in both set decor (why are you in your garage?) and your attire (can you say Duran Duran?), the food has been interesting and tempting and looks tasty. Keep it REAL, we love you just the way you are.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      11) Duff Goldman (and entire Charm City Cakes team) - You snuck up on all of us and have won our hearts. We know more about fondant and what you can do with it than we ever wanted to know. I love and teamwork that your group demonstrates on every show and it makes me want to be a better person. Will you adopt me, and teach me your ways?


                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: jvergara

                                                                                                                                                                                                        Funny, funny, funny! I enjoyed reading that. I have to agree with you on all of the above. I think it is funny that the food network is giving the fluff shows to people who actually can cook, like Giada, and giving cooking shows to people who are all fluff, like Sandra Lee.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: jvergara

                                                                                                                                                                                                          Oh my gosh! That was so funny! Spot on with everything (except I didn't think Duff was on FN?). Paula's husband needs to stay on the shrimp boat! Crazy Aunt Sandy! Are you a comedy writer? You need to be one. I'm wiping my eyes from laughing. I miss the Hearty Boys. I think they're on at dawn down here. They were so sweet and made such good food. Guy IS in his garage. What's up with that? Please let me know what you think of Robin Miller. She intrigues me.

                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: jvergara

                                                                                                                                                                                                            Rachel Ray is a cancer. Her success has made the suits try to clone her by forcing others into her mold and the result is unwatchable TV. Too Damn cheeky.

                                                                                                                                                                                                            Tyler Florence does some good work. Ina Garten does a nice job. Michael Chiarello is hit and miss. It seems that they ditch their best talent like Mario, Jamie Oliver, and Bourdain when they might actually have to pay them. Eye candy pumping out droll food and programing about how you make junk food? Come on! How about a show about real cooking, complex cooking. People can learn fundamental technique by watching more advanced stuff too. I wish they would quit dumbing it all down.

                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: GastronautMN

                                                                                                                                                                                                              'Rachel Ray is a cancer'

                                                                                                                                                                                                              Hasn't Rachel Ray almost single-handedly started a revolution of kids cooking? That's cancer? What strong words.

                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: roasted138

                                                                                                                                                                                                                I have nothing against Rachael Ray. Some of her recipes are actually pretty good looking.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                What I HATE is that the Food Network is now trying to hire multiple little "rachael rays" - people with no food background, no chef training, who make quick and easy recipes. The emphasis of many of the new shows is to have a cute-looking hostess th makes easy recipes.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                There is only one Rachael Ray. The people trying to be like her do not measure up and will never be able to duplicate her success. And the result is a lot of very boring, cutesy, food programs with prefab ingredients, super-simple recipes, and little emphasis on cooking skills, culinary traditions, or what makes really good food.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Not to mention all the food is in the standard Amercian genre, with only the occasional nod to any ethnic flavors... the recipes often look like they could be featured in Applebees or TGIFs. For eg, no one will go through how to make an authentic pho. But they will do something like canned chicken broth plus some soy sauce plus some ginger - and call that an Asian soup.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: roasted138

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Ray is an abomination. She sold her self when she was all cutesy (see pic 1) but they ended up with a monster (see pic 2). Like so many before me, it is time to clean the closet at FN. The suggested revamps need to take place while it might be salvageable. We get it, FN refuses to pay real people.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Derek Baine, senior analyst at the media research firm SNL Kagan, is reported to have commented, "It's not surprising that people move on". "They pay almost nothing for the people as they are building their careers". "That's been their strategy all along".

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  "About a year ago, the Food Network began aggressively trying to change that with new deals that were 'way more onerous' from the stars' point of view, said a person who has been affected by the changing strategy, by insisting on a stake in book deals and licensing ventures, and control over outside activities.

                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. Giada?!?!?!

                                                                                                                                                                                                            I watch a LOT of foodTV (probably 50%+ of my viewing) and my favorite chefs are:

                                                                                                                                                                                                            Most educational: Tyler Florence and Wolfgang Puck
                                                                                                                                                                                                            Most hilarious: Bobby Flay
                                                                                                                                                                                                            Most hilarious not in a good way: Sandra Lee
                                                                                                                                                                                                            Most awesomest: Tony Bourdain.
                                                                                                                                                                                                            Most fearsome/ridiculous/I-want-everything-he-makes: Iron Chef Sakai
                                                                                                                                                                                                            Most intense/how is he not out of breath: Mario Batali
                                                                                                                                                                                                            Most scientific until I found out about America's Test Kitchen: Alton Brown

                                                                                                                                                                                                            Honorable mentions:
                                                                                                                                                                                                            Best Chef not on FoodTV: Ming Tsai
                                                                                                                                                                                                            Best Show not on FoodTV: America's Test Kitchen

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                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: joonjoon

                                                                                                                                                                                                              Let me raise another Giada loving voice. Love her and love her cooking- it doesn't hurt that both the chef and the food are gorgeous to look at! I also have to admit my dorky crush on Alton Brown and his always corny jokes on Good Eats. He's a great teacher.. although I can't say I've watched Road Tasted, mostly due to my aversion to motorcycles. Finally, Mario is too amazing to miss. He is incredibly talented and has done so many wonderful things in the food world.

                                                                                                                                                                                                              Those I could live without: Emeril and his ridiculous catch phrases. Yes, I know he's a major reason for the success of the food network and the rapid spread of celeb-chef love among kids and most of america, but still...enough of the 'oh yeah babe' and 'another notch!' already. Plus, most of his food should come with a heart attack warning label. I know many people will probably lump Rachel in there too, but I disagree on the basis that she's not quite as annoying as he is and she's a great role model for home chefs without much access to high price ingredients. I can say without conviction that I wouldn't miss the semi- Barbie Sandra Lee and her sometimes semi-decent food and decorating tips.

                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. Giada is probably my favorite too. Her food is easy to prepare, and I like that it isn't always healthy. Least favorite? Emeril. I guess I just don't get the appeal.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: hornet2934

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I love Ina too - especially her garden. LOL

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Although I watch a lot of food-tv my favs are not on the Food Network, they're mostly on BBC America:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Rick Stein's Food Heroes, The Naked Chef (yes a repeat but I can't get enough of this fellow's recipes), Master Chef Goes Large, and sometimes Gordon Ramsey - the chef we love to hate....
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Rick Stein's previous series was about seafood but the passion he has for fresh ingredients and simply prepared dishes are the reasons I love his show and his presentation. Plus, the program is visually beautiful to look at, the camera work exceptional.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  On the Fine Living network there's Gordon Elliot's Follow That Food. Love watching this Aussie!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                2. I must agree with almost everybody... I love Giada! I don't know what initially drew me to her, the way her show is shot or her food? She has become a lot more relaxed in front of the camera in the last few years, and the friends and family she entertains with her dishes seem very real - because they are!!! She explains her recipes in a way that isn't condescending and she actually eats what she makes. Boy, does she love her Amaretti cookies!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I like watching Barefoot Contessa as well because I do find her show soothing, even if she does breathe heavy... and by now, we all know that Jeffrey's favorite meal is roast chicken. But her recipes always turn out well and she even makes souffle seem simple.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I used to have a bad taste in my mouth for Bobby Flay, but his cockiness has really grown on me. I enjoy him most on Throwdown and Boy Meets Grill... I suppose it's because he shows that he has a vulnerable side.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Mario Batali is a genius. Love the shoes buddy. I met him on an airplane once and he is just as nice and polite in person as he is on TV.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I miss most of Sandra Lee's show because she blends in with the background! I didn't know one could make an entire meal, "tablescape," and outfit BLUE!!! And one that nieces and nephews would enjoy while Auntie Sandy is busy with "cocktail time!" Did you know that's her favorite part? Of course you did... she reminds you every show. So, remember to keep it sauced, keep it sippable, keep it spiked, and always keep it semi-homemade.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. Bobby Flay!!!!! Is the man! The only Chef that can sweat though his shirt in under 5 minutes on boy meets grill!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. I recently had a dream that my husband left me and I called up Tyler and asked him out. We started a long love affair and he was great. I love Ina too.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      4 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Ela0427

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Oh Honey,,,we've all had that dream ;)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: PastaFace123

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I even told my husband about my evening fantasy and he laughed. You know you are a foodie geek when you dream of chefs rather than Brad Pitt!!
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          There is something sexy about Flay's confidence too.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Ela0427

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Seeing Bobby Flay makes me want to take a shower to wash off the slime and seeing Paula Deen makes me turn off the TV in record time...is that a poem?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Ela0427

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I would say I've had the most pleasurable tasting experiences cooking recipes from Michael Chiarello (I love whoever coined his personality as 'odd', what a tactful three words that really sums it up!), and I'd have to say my palette always seems to be right on the same page as him.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Alton brown is perhaps the most entertaining show, definitely the best director with great camera angles at every cut. However, he puts mustard in everything, I think perhaps even mac and cheese. I love his technique and clarity but don't usually agree with his palette.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Hot off the Grill has got the best production all-around, slo-mo shots and great sound effects to enhance the cooking process. Bobby is probably my second favorite as far as recipe success and amazing flavors.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Emeril is kind of that go-to show that you know you can pluck a good recipe from, but I find he does way too many things on his shows now. He ends up skimming through all of them and doesn't get in depth enough. Just my humble opinions and preferences.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. 1. Rick Bayless-- though his daughter lnie is annoying
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. Kylie Kwong
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          3. Alton Brown-- once in a great while now when he has a new episode of Good Eats

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                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: bbqme

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Ooooo! You are soooo right, Kylie Kwong does really know her stuff. I love watching her and her show. I know I will never make most of what I see her doing, but it is so fun to dream I would someday be invited to eat a meal at her darling house with her.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: bbqme

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I like Kylie Kwong's show, but I would like it much better if they got rid of that background music she's always talking over.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: LabRat

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I'm kind of a fan of Kylie Kwong, but I find myself looking more for Nathan Lyon's show on the same network (Discovery Health). His recipes look delicious and pretty easy.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. Giada... doesn't even need to cook...LOL, then Alton Brown, i always learn something from his shows.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. I miss Sara Moulton, Jamie Oliver, and Mario. Most definitely.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                As for the rest:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Giada: Her food is simple and edible. I give thumbs up. I use so many of her recipes. I feel like she's running out of ideas lately.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Ina: I have this anti-Hamptons bias thing going. Prior to her having a show and thus showing her face and personality to the world, I always thought of her as Caterer to the Beautiful People, so I never want to admit liking what she makes. She has some good recipes, but very few of them are ones I'm dying to make. People rag on Paula for using too much butter and cream, but Ina uses just as much.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Paula Deen: I used to like her more. I think her act is getting tired and it seems less of her food is homemade lately. She's also getting weird.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Emeril: He has grown on me. I feel like his food is constrained by the demands of the FN honchos at times, but he can still make my mouth water. I think he displays genuine passion - and he's one of the last trained chefs on teh network. I have to agree that pork fat does indeed rule.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Nigella: I really haven't seen that many episodes to judge.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Alton: Love his act, but I think he makes things too complicated sometimes. I also don't always think his way is the best way. I tend to watch him more for entertainment than for cooking tips.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Tyler: I ignored him for years. I'm getting into "Ultimate" show lately. I guess his drawback is that he doesn't seem to have a "specialty". He's not a Creole chef or a southern chef or an Italian chef. He just sort of makes - everything. But he does make everything well and has excellent recipes. I think people who can't cook could learn far more from the late lamented "How to Boil Water" than from, let's say...Rachael Ray. Tyler gets a thumbs up.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Bobby Flay: I don't mind his attitude. He's a real chef. I just don't get into his show that much. I live in an apartment and don't grill. There isn't much point in watching him.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Michael Chiarello: Same as Nigella. I haven't seen too many of his shows.

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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Avalondaughter

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I like Ina Garten and her recipes always seem v. straight forward - I shared your anti-Hamptons bias until I started to have the opportunity to spend time there in the off season about two years ago - it truly is a beautiful part of the world - the light is incredible.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Edit - there are also great farm stands and a wonderful cheese market.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Avalondaughter

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Funny, I agree right down to the anti-Hamptons thing! For some reason I always thought she was on the Vineyard! You really need to try to catch Michael. He's lovely.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Do you remember Nathalie Dupree? I think she was on PBS or some local NYC station. I used to watch her with my grandmother.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. Don't know when Tyler's Ultimate is usually on, but I've started watching this on Food Network on Demand. He is fantastic. His recipes are mouth-watering, they make me want to run out in the middle of the night to buy all the ingredients, then call over friends for dinner the next night. His cooking makes me hungry even after I've had a big meal. There are no distracting cleavage or bobblehead, no annoying signature phrases, and the focus is all about the food, baby. I love watching his huge hands work :). He comes across as nice and funny and down to earth--he could be your next-door neighbor except hotter and a heck of a chef. And for once, it's good to see a show where the chef actually cooks, not travel around the world or engage in some silly showdown.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I say, more Tyler (but please, not in that silly "How to Boil Water" show, for the love of god!).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    He's wasted on the FN and should be in the PBS/WLIR lineup with Lidia, Jacques et al. Replace that annoying and boring Bittman show.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. Best two TV Chefs of all time: Biker Billy..."Cooks with FIRE!-All right!" on public access and Justin Wilson..."Hoooweee-I Garontee!"

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. I just love Iron Chef Japan - Masaharu Morimoto!! His new book is fantastic and I met him recently at a book signing!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. 1. Alton Brown
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. Bobby Flay
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          3. Morimoto

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Bottom feeders: Rachel Paula (the molester) and Sandra Lee (for the love of God, how does that show stay on?)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. Ina Garton and Bobby Flay because Ina makes the best, simple food, and Bobby's a grill guy!


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. Nigella is a mash up of Elizabeth David and Joan Collins tho' I wish she were more the former and less the latter. The glory days of TFN are long gone, today its awash in a sea of "bobble heads" (thank u Mr. Bourdain!) with most becoming characatures of themselves. And why is Giada so bossy?! She tells her husband and her girlfriends what to eat, in what order and where to sit in that really annoying voice of hers. Alton's Roadkill or whatever its called is a rip-off of Bourdain's far superior show. I still watch Ina and love her recipes, but what really ticks me off about TFN is that in a nation where salsa long ago started outselling ketchup, where every community has at least one chinese restaurant (and usually a thai and vietnamese as well) and people of color helped create what is arguably America's only indigenous cuisine, TFN remains overwhelmingly, obdurately and apparently unchangebly White.

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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: annabana

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                How on earth is "Feasting on Asphalt" at all a ripoff of anything Tony Bourdain has done? I like both of the hosts quite a bit and I like "Feasting on Asphalt" and enjoy both "A Cook's Tour" and "No Reservations" a bunch as well. Other than, perhaps, the US/Mexico border episode of "No Reservations" in which Tony Bourdain did ride a motorcycle, the shows really aren't all that similar, owing largely to the fact that the hosts aren't all that similar.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. My favorite is Masaharu Morimoto.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. 1. Alton Brown is a fun guy who combines science and artistry and really knows southern cooking, I might add, a lot better than Paula Dean.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. Barefoot Contessa. I like her attitude and her food looks great.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  3. Batali. This guy appears on tv as a funny, friendly, kind person who really knows how to cook.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  4. Emeril. Again, his personality is as much a part of his appeal as his actual cooking.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Then there are the ones who annoy most folks, apparently:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Sandra Lee. Between the decoration of each kitchen and the type of cooking she is doing, I'm just not overwhelmed. Nonetheless, I don't see why anyone would bash her personally -- she fills that lovely 1950s niche -- perfect Pleasantville housewife who needs something to occupy her time and gee why not make decent stuff from cans bought off the shelf at the Piggly-Wiggly style...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Rachel Ray. Gosh she's smart. And she has 90% of the folks here completely buffaloed. I should be so smart as to make that much money for something that so many complain about. I'm sure she's laughing all the way to the bank.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  The only one I'm not that fond of really, is Paula Dean. I just can't stand the presentation of her show, the way her personality seems designed to fit the show, rather than the other way around, and her notion of southern cooking has the veneer of fake to it that I don't experience with other real southern cooks. Too bad, really, because I understand that in person she is a nice lady who cooks pretty well.

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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: fussycouple

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    TT's been to Paula's "The Lady & Sons" restaurant in Savannah and met Paula later in Texas and can report the following. The restaurant is much calmer when she's not there, and she comes across exactly as she does on the show.


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. My favorite FN chefs are both chefs in real life... Batali and Lagasse.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Mario makes (and serves) seriously good food in all his restaurants, and is an excellent teacher. Emeril's show is not like Emeril the chef. In real life he's shy, self-effacing, and serious about taking care of his restaurants and employees. His food is delicious. He is much more like the Essence of Emeril than Emeril Live. The FN producers created his persona....

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. anone familiar with Donna Hay, the aussie? she was on tv in the states but it was a few years ago...not her own show, i forget, her food looks wonderful and the ingrediant list is never long and drawn out. lots of asian influences. i think of her as the aussie martha s in some ways (not a in bad way). i've gotten her cookbook "flavors" and a few of her magazine (big drawbak there is each issue is $10usd).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. Mario. He's still the best but (beyond ICA) he's been banished to 10 am on Monday mornings. What a joke.

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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: joeyz

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          they are showing molto mario on fln last i checked i dont have that channel anymore

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. if i could only watch two shows on the food network:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          [1] jamie at home, with jamie oliver.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          [2] boy meets grill, with bobby flay.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          jamie at home i enjoy watching because he cooks dishes that are much more british than things i'm used to cooking, thereby broadening my horizons; and bobby i enjoy watching because i love southwestern food, and be damned if that dude doesn't put chipotles in everything.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. Rob Rainford of "License to Grill"

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            And Anthony Bourdain.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. This is not intended to offend but I cannot tolerate Rachel, Giada, Paula. Far too simplistic and annoying. I do not tolerate Gordon or Anthony or Emeril, either. They are not allowed to be on TV in our house! :)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Love Alton, Heston, Michael Smith (Canadian), Anna Olson (Canadian) and anyone else from whom you can actually learn something. Also love Jamie (have met him in London - he's great!) and Jose Andres. Loved the chefs on "Cook Like a Chef" when it was on. Love Guy and Michael Rubino's show. Oh, and how could I forget Tyler? In my love category.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I like Ina's personality but her recipes are so common and easy - looking for something to learn.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. Kudo's to Annie Burrel-the first "real" female chef on FN.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. Alton Brown, Giada, Nigella, Tyler Florence, Michael Chiarello. Roughly tied.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I used to watch Ina but there's something about her I find distant, hoity toity, and unsettling. Not sure what.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. why giada ? I don't understand.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    she became too annoying to watch.

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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: ymushi

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I like the food she prepares. I like her ease and calm in the kitchen.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: jmckee

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Her 'ease and calm' in the kitchen is due to numerous takes, retakes and edits. She simply can't cook live. And for someone who makes sure we all know that she is a French trained chef she can't cook anything beyond simple italian dishes. Nor does she seem particularly nice or gracious.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Withnail42

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          i think of her in ICA jumping up and down with clenched fists (!) in a frantic tantrum when the humongo pot of water she needed was not boiling! it was hill-arious!!!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. re: jmckee

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          The ease and calm translates into Giada constantly whispering and having unnatural pauses and a weird cadence.It's gotten worse over the years.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          That said, I think her food is good.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. Since this post was first entered almost a year ago, FN has been changing its tune a bit. I've been watching more.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        It seems FN executives are learning that most of us know that dumping a bunch of meat and cheese in a pan does not constitute a recipe, nor does it really show us how to cook.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Jamie is back on and I'm loving his show.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Anne Burrell is extremely annoying, but she does what Rachael Ray and Sandra Lee have failed to do. She shows you REAL recipes for REAL food and shows you that REAL cooking doesn't have to be difficult and explains basic concepts really well. She actually teaches technique without making people feel like good cooking has to be complicated.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I also like Alex Guarnaschelli. Her shtick is far less annoying than Anne's (although she does get a bit too cutesy at times). She also is very thorough in her explanations of technique and has very doable recipes that are actually recipes.

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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Avalondaughter

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I agree, I love Jamie's new show, it is unfortunate that he is only on once a week...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. Alton Brown definitely, he has consistently kept me entertained, his recipes work, he teaches you how to cook whether than how to cook this specific dish.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I love him!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. Nigella Lawson without a doubt. I watched her show for weeks and then one day found out OMG she cooks too!!!!!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            hee hee

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. Alton Brown, but I've heard that he can be pretty arrogant. Can anyone dispel this rumor?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              4 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: rthorn46

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Well at certain time I can sense that he thinks he's better than a lot of the food network chefs, which is true...I mean, have you seen the other 'chefs' on that channel?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                But he's still a nice guy, he's very friendly to his fans. Haven't heard a bad fan account ever.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: AngelSanctuary

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Met him once and he could not have been nicer.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: AngelSanctuary

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Ditto that. We met him at a food show a few years back. He signed everything we put in front of him and engaged us in a conversation about what we had made for dinner. He was charming.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: tenor12bucks

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Thanks. Now I can watch all the witty alliterations and pop culture references with peace of mind.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                2. i like tyler florence quite a bit, and ina garten (except when she's doing that slurpy-breathing thing). i also enjoy chiarello's show, when i catch it. but, he seems like a cool cucumber.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  i miss molto mario very much, and enjoy essence of emeril. i like anne burrell's show when i catch it, but her set is soooo distracting. i also liked boy meets grill with bobby flay (whom i didn't used to like....)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  but, since i found createtv, i'm really watching that more.... lidia's italy, jacques pépin...julia!!! atk.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. Giada and Tyler are definitely both my favorite. It doesn't hurt that Tyler looks just as yummy as his food does! I find Ina Garten incredibly pretentious and dull. I'm loving that Jamie Oliver was brought back! His latest cookbook - Jamie at Home is amazing!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. Ina, Tyler and Sara in that order are my favs of all time.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I use to watch a lot of Rachael Ray in the beginning, although I find her most recent episodes to be warn thin. I enjoy her overall concept of being able to put a home cooked meal on the table each and everyday, something our culture lacks a bit of.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I also really enjoy Sandra’s concepts in that you can take store bought stuff and make it better at home. I used a lot of her ideas in college and my place was the destination to eat because I didn’t live off of ramen and George Forman grilled chicken dish’s.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      While the latter two are no longer my top favorites, I must give them credit in making me the home chef I am today.

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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Asumnuthin

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Thank you! I don't know why people feel the need to bash Rachael and Sandra. They are not chefs but they make cooking more approachable for the inexperienced. My little sister actually has things like fresh ginger and ground cumin and tumeric in her repertoire thanks to RR. She used to be a salt, pepper and hot sauce gal!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. Whatever happened to Wolfgang Puck's "Cooking Class?" I LOVED that show, despite the fact that it came on at 4 o'clock in the morning. He was my favorite chef on FN. I always learned something new from him, and he made it all look so easy! I adored the Two Fat Ladies, too, and miss them a lot (they gave me a whole new appreciation for anchovy paste).. As far as who's left, I am a huge Alton Brown fan. I've learned a lot from him, and I really resonate with the goofy humor and general kookiness. I would like to see Ming Tsai but can't find him listed anwhere on our local PBS station.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: CookieWeasel

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          wolfie puck! yes, indeed, he is my favorite. and i loved two fat ladies as well.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          try getting ming tsai on the pbs "create" channels -- check your digital cable listings.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: alkapal

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            The Fat Ladies rule! Why is no one showing their reruns? Eighteen hours of Gordon Ramsay reruns daily on BBCA you'd think they could slip in the Fat Ladies once in a while.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. Doesn't anyone remember Madeleine Kamman(Sp?). I learned so much from her. I can still make a decent puff pastry and everytime the fridge is too full I think of "Garbage Soup!"

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. Not a chef but for sheer relaxation, I love Ace of Cakes. I always enjoyed and learned from the young man who cooked from his home and had a pantry to die for. Name? From Canada, a chef who owned an organic farm, Manic Organic? Please Food Network, no more of your Next Food Network Star shows. The last one especially was without merit.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Choconutty

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              The chef who cooks from his home is Michael Smith. I really like his shows, except that he always talks about "cooking off", "baking off", "grilling off", "roasting off", etc. I find it irritating.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: souschef

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                He reminded me of John Corbett, the actor. I liked his show while it was on, but that theme music was atrocious.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                And I love your comment below about Ina's nervous laugh. I call it semi-maniacal.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. re: Choconutty

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                choconutty, I've watched Michael Smith for years. love his home overlooking the water and his darling son Gab. although watching him for what seems years and years while his show was on, I think he's still on Canadian tv, some of what he prepares isn't what I'd be interested in making. yes, his pantry, his fridge, the yard, the view, his seemingly endless variety of available food products, fortunate.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              3. My favourite has to be Laura Caulder. I like her personality and the stuff she makes.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                A close second is Ina Garten, though she does the "How easy is that?" nonsense that is also done by Rachel Ray, Giada, and Paula Dean. Also, I find her nervous laughter at the end of each episode irritating.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I like Rachel Ray's travel shows, but not her 30-minute meals....the "Yum-Oh!" nonsense, etc.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. Ina Garten and Ann Burrell. Michael Chiarello reruns.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. I dont really agree with the "Alton isnt a chef" comment. What defines a chef besides being passionate about food and knowing the reasoning behind what your doing and why. I would with out a doubt call him a chef...and a damn good one at that. Love Alton, would love to have a few beers with him at a BBQ seems like a real cool down to earth guy. 1 for me would def be Alton, then Anthony Bourdaine, then either Emeril or Rob Reinford..bc i love to grill. But hands down Alton knows his S***! And he always stresses the importance of TIME!

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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Jaco_Badboy

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      From wikipedia, "The word "chef" (from Latin caput) is the abbreviated form of the French phrase chef de cuisine, the "chief" or "head" of a kitchen." A chef has to run all aspects of a kitchen, something Alton Brown has never done.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. I might of answered this topic before and if I have, well then I've changed who I enjoy watching since then.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I enjoy watching Guy Fieri. DD&D is one of the shows that I can't miss. I really am amazed at some of the food in these so called dives. I've gottens some good ideas watching that show. And when I can catch his cooking show, I do. I related to his cooking, he uses a lot of the same ingredients I do, and I notice he does a lot of Mexican and Asian fusions. Not to mention, I think he has the cutest family, and what friends! Everyone should have so many friends. Is he ever in a bad mood?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Giada D., I never cared for that much, but recently, she also is making some reallly good recipes. She did a stuffed pork chop the other day I am absolutely going to make. I like her desserts, not to mention her food always looks so gorgeous. Love seeing her little baby girl too, what a doll, looks just like her.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Ina Garten please don't get me wrong. I find her recipes hit and miss anymore, she does alot of re-dos, I get that's her schtick. She does seem to be the sweetest lady. undoubtly, I love her barn and garden! And let it be known, no one can top her when it comes to making cakes and pastries. What she does make good also is soup. I've taken some of her ideas and added to them. Especially the pureed vegetable soups.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Lets see, ICA is losing my interest. Doesn't seem to have the spark it used to. BF, and Mario are so talented, they just need to get their own show. The guests are a nice surprise, but you, or I should say I, don't think 60 minutes (or less) is enough time to get to know much about them.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      And lastly, I always love to watch AB, he is so knowlegeable, I love watching him, I always learn something new, and I think he has a fun and fresh approach to teaching..

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. Years from now, there will be Alton Brown and several asterisks.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. I just adore Tyler Florence and Bobby Flay. I can't stand Sandra Lee and Rachel Ray.

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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: stricken

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            have you seen the new "mexican made easy" host? she is a combo of rachael, sandra and giada (looks, clothing, demeanor)-- and steals a line from one of my (genuine) favorites, daisy martinez ("it's like a party in my mouth.")

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            and she changes the line to "it's like a party in my palate." IN your palate?! honey, call 911.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: alkapal

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I thought "party in my mouth (and everyone's invited)" originated with Moe the bartender in The Simpsons.


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: JohnE O

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                moe stole it from daisy. (who, i guess, took it from someone else -- but... but,,, a long time ago).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: alkapal

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  An even better Moe quote:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  "I'm gonna rip out your eyes and shove 'em down your pants so you can see me kick the crap outta ya'".

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  If Moe is going to take credit for the line, I'll let him.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. re: stricken

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Bobby Flay? That little Troll ;-) How about a real man like Guy Fieri! He'll attract more youngsters into cooking than Flay ever will.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Curry Cook

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                If he could only cook! Great personality though

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Curry Cook

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Any time I happen to see Guy Fieri I always seem to hear variations of the same old dialogue, "Let's hit these bad boys with some hot sauce".

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: souschef

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    ooooh, sounds like guy fieri is the "new" sandra lee.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    i happen to like him.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. Claire Robinson has dethroned Giada and Nigella as my number one hottie-pie FN personality. Her cooking ain't too bad either.

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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: DexterM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Claire #1 with a bullet as far as I'm concerned. I also like Ingrid Hoffman, but I'm not sure if she is still on. My top celebrity judge is Donatella Arpaia, very spicy.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. Ina Garten is the only FN show I can stomach because she doesn't have cutesy gimmicks, her non-food prep (e.g. table settings) is simple and understated, and her food is simple and quality ingredient driven.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    There are too many horrible food shows on that network but the worst are tied between Sandra Lee and that peroxided sunburnt loudmouth. Neither have food knowledge that goes much deeper than their hair dye and both have the most obnoxious sets that mirror their personalities beautifully.

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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: tvfoodcritic

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I too love Ina and have a hate, hate relationship with Sandra Lee, Giada and Rachel Ray.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. Robert Irvine is without a doubt the best actual chef on the food network. Giada is the best personality.

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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: restaurantmarketing

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I love Alton Brown. I also like Ellie Krieger, not sure if she has been mentioned or not. I am always looking for more healthy alternatives. I love watching Paula and Nigella but I don't make their recipe's. Kinda the same way with Emeril. Okay to watch but just don't make the food.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Liveitloud

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              ellie krieger always seems soooooo mel-low.......

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              might i attribute that to prescription drugs?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: alkapal

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Guy Fieri. When he did an interview about a Italian restaurant in SanFran, i decided to try it out and it was even better than expected. i liked Alton even before he lost all that weight. i figure he lost a lot of weight because he doctor said his blood work came back with a lot of changes recommended. Rachel, I don't watch so much as I use her book. Her road trips I enjoy and have tried

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: alkapal

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  LOVE Ellie. Economy with words and actions works for me.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. I enjoy both Ina and Giada's shows. I like their personalities and both have recipes I have tried and really liked. I do think that Ina uses the same phrases over and over because she's not that great at ad libbing - I just saw an episode where she made a fruit crostata with a crumb topping and she said, "just crumble it up into big crumbles, and that way it will be nice and crisp and...crumbly." Not Food Network, but I used to love "Anna and Kristina's Grocery Bag." I used to watch the Food Network all the time, but I find there are fewer and fewer shows that I like. I do like "Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives," but I pretty much hate all the other shows that are hosted by "The Next Food Network Star" contestants. It seems like half the contestants end up with a show, even if they didn't win.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. Favorite Food Network Chef? To me, these days, that's an oxymoron.

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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: ferventfoodie

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Well, in all fairness, this thread IS 5 years old...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                2. FN Canada here... I'll name personalities because programs are different here although we see chefs without shows on things like Iron Chef.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  - Bobby Flay: seems intense and concentrated.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  - Michael Smith: seems like a nice stoner who you'd want to cook your munchies with ("..you know what? I'll just dip those Cheetos in Nutella..!)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  - Jamie Oliver: knows what he's doing and seems very dedicated in his chosen path.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  - Chuck Hughes: energetic and fun, original dishes and good tips.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  the ones I don't get--
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  - Ina Garten: seems more like a bourgeois-lifestyle aspiration show to me and her food is very basic.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  - Guy Fieri: can't stand the sunglasses-on back-of-head thing.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  - that Bitchin Kitchen lady: i don't even know who's the audience for this show.

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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: CallAnyVegetable

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    "that Bitchin Kitchen lady: i don't even know who's the audience for this show"
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    it sure isn't me.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I don't care if she'd rather feast on mushroom risotto or make out with Clooney, she won't be packing on any mileage on my television.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    a lot of shows are subjective and it's what one likes as opposed to what another likes.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Guy Fieri or Ferry or Fietti [whatever his name is] his shtick is annoying to me I'll admit.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I do watch DDD simply because if something sounds good and it's doable, I try to go.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Unfortunately PD is starting to get on my nerves probably due to her latest news story.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    RR has long ago lost me, and lost her original self along the way.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    EL although I used to watch all his shows, I have no doubt he is a very talented chef just not easy to view any longer.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Tyler F never did anything for me.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Giada is so so. for having gone to culinary school, her talents seem very basic.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Alex G I really do like. She's talented, pleasing personality and although it has nothing to do with any cooking skills, I think she's beautiful.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I do love the show "the best thing I ever ate" but that's not one celebrity chefs show so...
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Paul Prudhomme is wonderful.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Bobby Flay is good to watch.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. Never liked Bobby. When he jumped up on his cutting board on IC I was sure that Japanese dude with the bad attitude and pony tail was going to throw his deba bocho at Bobby. LOL That pretty well finished me ever watching anything with Bobby in it again.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Rumor has it that the Japanese dude was SERIOUSLY pissed at Bobby. He felt Bobby's antics 'brought down the seriousness' of the show. Those IC's are VERY serious about what they do and how risking being beaten will effect their future careers. Someone who worked with Feenie told me that the whole IC and ICA production world is VERY intense! Especially the original IC.

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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Puffin3

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Your argument would sound SO MUCH better if you knew the name of the 'Japanese dude'.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      He was Masaharu Morimoto.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      And they must have patched things up because they both went on to become American Iron Chefs.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: pdxgastro

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        A I wasn't 'arguing' anything with anyone.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        B Sorry, at the time I couldn't be bothered 'goggling' up "the dudes" name.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        C I'll know better for next time. LOL
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        D Just because they are on the same show does not mean "the Japanese dude" thinks any better about Bobby basically desecrating what "the Japanese dude" considers next to sacred ground in the kitchen. Most 'real' chefs consider jumping up and down on a cutting board with dirty shoes a disgrace. Try going into a restaurant kitchen run by a serious chef and jumping up on HIS cutting board.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Puffin3

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          puffin, loved your insightfulness or should I say bravado! ;:~}

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. After all these years, still love Ina. Did I miss comments about Ann Burrell and Sunny Anderson? Really like those two and their recipies are easy to follow. Will not watch anyone who uses the term Tablescape. Also love the Saturday line up on our local PBS stations. Lida in America or her kitchen, Chow America, Cook's Kitchen and a PA fav. the chef from Penn State. Many cooking mistakes corrected after listening to their programs. Know these are not Food Network but still very important to those of us who love to cook.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. My husband watches Giada on mute and I practically have to wipe the drool from his mouth. I think she is horrendous and I hate to say it but her stubby arms make her look like a t-rex. Her overpronnounciation of Italian words drives me insane. I watch her sometimes (not on mute) and her show is like a car wreck - I just can't look away for some sickening reason.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I love Jaime Oliver; his energy is amazing! I like his "rustic" approach to cooking too. My favourite show is Jamie At Home or something where he cooks in his back yard in that insane wood burning oven and finds pieces of broken up wood to use as cutting boards. I am totally jealous of his garden. His 30-minute meals show is fun too. Did anyone see his Christmas special (2011) where his insane uncle from Italy came in and cooked some pork thing?? I loved every second of that.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Alton Brown is fun too - he blinds me with science.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Rob Rainford is awesome but I never see him on TV anymore.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Anna Olson's Sugar show was sooooo much better than her new show. She seems so incredibly square on it and her recipes seem a little blah.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I love Ina Gaarten but can understand how some people could find her annoying. I like her entertaining tips. She is the reason why I now have a bar table at all of my dinner parties.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. lynn crawford is my favourite host and esp on that show Pitchin' In.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          she alone (well, Igor too) was great on that makeover show (it scared me to see places that look like where we go to eat sometimes)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          i like her spunk, her enthusiasm, her respect, her diverse interests, she seems genuinely interested in food and not just being some fancy divo/diva person, her mouth is a bit foul but in some of those situations i would be too; she shares her knowledge willingly (plays well with others) and is at least able to find something complimentary to say no matter what home-cooking she's had to taste (the rhubarb asparagus dessert with wild strawberry jello?!). She seems to be able to interact with all people no matter their age, gender, kitchen skills, and no matter what region of North America and that's saying something cuz not all of us see the best in our state/province neighbors nor do we understand their cultures/food choices etc.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. I love Guy Fieri. He has amazing energy and is just fun to watch! He makes me smile just watching him smile, and he has quite an infectious laugh. I watched him compete on NFS and knew from the beginning that he would be a huge star. His show "Triple D" has a cult like following, including myself. I love the Flavortown App. I use it often to find a place to eat when traveling:)

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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: amymc

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Thanks for mentioning the app. Will have to check it out!
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Guy is lightning in a bottle. FN struck gold with him. Love him or not, he's got "it".