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Rachel Ray's $40 a Day vs. Giada's Weekend Getaways

They're both travel shows with a similar concept, where they both eat and sight see in a particular city.

And, oftentimes, they'll both visit the same city at some point.

But, if you had to follow their choices and eat at the same places they chose, which show would you look to as your restaurant guide?

I'm curious about their recommendations in cities in which chowhounds live in, and what chowhounds thought of Rachel Ray's and Giada's choices.

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  1. $40 a Day teaches the viewers that a 10% tip is perfectly acceptable. It's a joke.

    1. [Deep breath:]

      Rachael Ray blah blah blah horrible cook blah blah blah awful grating voice blah blah blah not a chef blah blah blah no knife skills blah blah blah god I hate her blah blah blah.

      Giada de Laurentiis blah blah blah huge head blah blah blah low-cut blouses blah blah blah mouthful of too many teeth spoiled Italian bitch blah blah blah over-enunciates/mispronounces Italian words according to what I think Italian sounds like blah blah blah god I hate her blah blah blah.

      Just saving people the trouble of taking this thread into the usual direction it goes for these two personalities. Since there is a 100% chance it will move from your question into these irresistable but totally stupid and immature weeds. This site teems with irrational snarky bile directed at these two people who, people have decided, do not deserve their success. To which I say: Hey, they fill some niche in culinary education and are making some money doing it. More power to them. And I wouldn't turn down a meal cooked by either one.

      As for your question: I'll go with Giada. But then again, her food budget on her travels is basically unlimited. If I'm pinching pennies, I'll go with Rachael's choices.

      1. My personal feelings about both women's personalities aside, I don't think anyone could go wrong visiting a restaurant that either one recommended.

        1. As far as I remember the shows, both have different target audience.

          Ray's was more low/mid end restaurants and family style place (other than the bar and dive) and Giada was more mid/high end (?) restaurants in more fancy place.

          Both show have/had their places in the food TV arena.

          Max.

          1. I would go to many of the places Rachael Ray went. Probably would never go to where Giada di Laurentis went.

            I really hated how cheap Ray was on the tip though. They should have just done $40 per day without tip.

            4 Replies
            1. re: Shann

              It was hilarious on No Reservations when Bourdains asked the waitress at The Hominy Grill about how RR tips. Couldn't help cackling out loud...

              1. re: rozz01

                I'm surprised Rachel Ray would be cheap with her tip because I believe she was a waitress for awhile and you'd expect somebody with that background to appreciate how difficult that job may be.

                But, I guess the poor tips were a function of the show where the total, including tax and tip, had to be under $40. I wonder if she's a better tipper off the show, or maybe even over compensates because of her stingy image from the show.

                1. re: hobbess

                  I traveled for many years with a per diem of 40-45 p/day, ate and tipped well, what's the big deal? Never got the jist of that.

                  1. re: cstr

                    I think the $40 a day show showed the bill without tip for a while, but nasty foodies kept hounding her about the lack of tip on the show, so at some point the producers had Ray try for $40 a day, including a 10% tip to the balance. I doubt she tips poorly in real life; she just doesn't strike me as a person like that.

                    I like $40 a day show because I tend toward the lower end of the restaurant eating spectrum. Also, I like Ray's personality.