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About Steven Raichlen

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i've seen Steven Raichlen referred to as a douchebag or something similar several times in print, don't remember exactly where. I watch his shows when I can, they are educational, and I don't see any bad attitude or arrogance that stands out. I looked his bio up on Wikipedia, and the guy has had a lot of very impressive training. The show is formulaic to a degree, but it's nearly always educational and the food looks wonderful almost all the time.
My question- what's your opinion of him and his shows? If you think he's a douchebag or jerk or pinhead, why? Did you attend one of his BBQ U classes? What did you think of it?

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  1. His show is as dull as watching grass grow, but he obviously knows his stuff, and I would happily make any of his recipes.

    1. I feel like i learn alot from his bbq techniques, but he has a way of making something as fun and soulful as bbq feel clinical.

      3 Replies
      1. re: JCap

        I agree, I've gotten a lot out of his books and the PBS series (I can never cook enough of his Vietnamese meatballs. No matter how many times I multiply the recipe I never seem to have any leftover). He definitely takes grilling and bbq into uncharted territory for most backyard enthusiasts, but he does have a bit of a flat personality. Fine with me though. I'd rather watch someone like him where the focus is on the cooking than the personality driven shows on the FN.

        1. re: laststandchili

          Agreed. Give me clinical over personality. There's a chance I might learn something.

          1. re: scubadoo97

            AMEN!!

      2. Met him personally and he was extremely nice.

        I like both his books and his tv shows. Both are very informative.

        1. He reminds me of the Bob Ross of grilling. I like him.

          2 Replies
          1. re: ttoommyy

            ttoommyy, that's hilarious!

            Well, I guess I didn't read that here, or somebody would have come out with both guns blazing by now.
            I agree that I'd rather watch somebody who's more of an educated cook than an entertainer when it's a show about cooking, and really I don't find him boring to watch at all.

            1. re: ttoommyy

              This charcoal is made of happy little trees.

            2. Never met him, but I took a bbq class from another pitmaster and read a few bbq forums.

              The impression I get was that of jealousy. Raichlen gets the notoriety, tv and book deals, but has never won a single competition.

              I think this is akin to comedians or musicians calling tv comedians and popular bands "sellouts." However, if the critics made a lot of money, they'd sing another tune.