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Restaurant owner Terry Valenti accused of falsifying Iron Chef experience

TrishUntrapped Jan 8, 2012 07:31 AM

It appears a restaurant owner, Terry Valenti (where in NY is his restaurant?) claimed he beat Bobby Flay in Battle Parsnips. Only problem is no one has any record of it. Anyone else know anything about this?

http://www.foodnetworkfans.com/forum/...

  1. TrishUntrapped Feb 3, 2012 04:57 AM

    Just when you think this story's done and can't get any stranger:

    It was the Parsnips that did it: http://networkedblogs.com/twqsu

    1. woodleyparkhound Feb 1, 2012 06:34 AM

      The End of Valenti's

      http://blogs.artvoice.com/avdaily/201...

      2 Replies
      1. re: woodleyparkhound
        LindaWhit Feb 1, 2012 10:15 AM

        Wonder how Janice Okun feels about that review now?

        1. re: LindaWhit
          j
          jamesm Feb 1, 2012 03:39 PM

          I still find the funniest part of that whole debacle the fact that he lied about winning Iron Chef. He could have lied about any winning dish but even in his wildest imagination the most sophisticated, creative dish he could conceive was 'sea bass stuffed with artichokes and parsnips."

      2. TrishUntrapped Feb 1, 2012 05:18 AM

        Super kudos to Alan Bedenko. While questioning a simple restaurant review that contained what he found to be some pretty wild claims, he uncovered a web of lies. The upshot: Terry Valenti admitted he lied about Battle Parsnips and many other things, and is now in jail waiting for extradition to Texas, while his restaurant is being evicted.

        For people in Buffalo, you may have been spared being flimflammed and cheated to the max. A good lesson here. Always question claims, and verify. Always.

        1. f
          freia Jan 31, 2012 02:12 PM

          i found the posts hard to follow on the site cause deb and everyone is so mean just wate til i see you in court you make me mad just you wate cause I'm gonna esplane everything i stand by my man not like sum of you...
          LOLOLOL
          I particularly loved it when Lori made an appearance here...AWESOME!
          One day, hopefully, a concise account of what exactly went down will be available because all joking aside, I did have a tough time following the thread on artvoice from start to finish.
          Congrats on a good result!
          :)

          1. woodleyparkhound Jan 31, 2012 06:25 AM

            The discussion has been continued here:

            http://blogs.artvoice.com/avdaily/201...

            1 Reply
            1. re: woodleyparkhound
              southernitalian Jan 31, 2012 01:41 PM

              Fascinating story. Hard to look away. So. Who IS Karma?

            2. woodleyparkhound Jan 20, 2012 11:44 AM

              Buffalopundit has shut down the original artvoice thread as over 1,100 comments had been made on it. He encourages people to continue the discussion here:

              http://blogs.artvoice.com/avdaily/201...

              1. m
                mrkarma Jan 19, 2012 12:25 PM

                His own press release that JUST came out disputes everything he said on the radio show, LOL!
                http://www.scribd.com/doc/78786926/Va...

                3 Replies
                1. re: mrkarma
                  LindaWhit Jan 19, 2012 12:30 PM

                  Where are you seeing a date on that press release? It reads as if it were written a long time ago. Doesn't look like a typical press release with the bolding and enlarged font size - it looks like a restaurant review. Written by Valenti or Lori.

                  1. re: LindaWhit
                    m
                    mrkarma Jan 19, 2012 12:49 PM

                    It WAS written when it was first opened, by their PR company they hired. If you look closely on that page, you can SEE who submitted this. Bravo on the timing, Alan!

                  2. re: mrkarma
                    k
                    KailuaGirl Jan 19, 2012 04:34 PM

                    Love the misspelling of "parmisan."

                  3. TrishUntrapped Jan 19, 2012 05:32 AM

                    Wow. Just listened to Terry Valenti himself on the radio. He admitted to the following:

                    1. He was not on Iron Chef America. He said he did a little mock Iron Chef competition in Florida and it got blown way out of proportion.

                    2. He lied about being a graduate of the Culinary Institute of America. He said he was desperate for a job so he lied about his background to get one.

                    3. He had made a claim that he worked at Mamma Leone's in NYC. To set the record straight he said, "There are like 20 Mamma Leone's in New York. I didn't work at the famed one, I worked at another one."

                    4. There is a YouTube audio, wherein (an alleged) Mr. Valenti claims he is the president of a chapter of the Hell's Angels. He has AFFA (a Hell's Angels phrase) tattooed on his fingers. Mr. Valenti admitted he is not a member of Hell's Angels.

                    Anyone eat there yet?

                    4 Replies
                    1. re: TrishUntrapped
                      LindaWhit Jan 19, 2012 11:23 AM

                      Did he sound penitent? Or defiant and trying to backpedal his way out of the crapper he's fallen into?

                      1. re: LindaWhit
                        TrishUntrapped Jan 19, 2012 11:36 AM

                        Here's the station's website, hey have podcasts if you want to hear it:

                        http://www.wedg.com/

                        1. re: TrishUntrapped
                          LindaWhit Jan 19, 2012 12:14 PM

                          I'll have to see if I have time tonight; can't listen at work.

                      2. re: TrishUntrapped
                        k
                        KailuaGirl Jan 19, 2012 04:30 PM

                        FWIW, AFFA stands for "Angels forever, forever Angels." Some also say that the "A" is for "avengers" but Angels makes more sense to me.

                      3. TrishUntrapped Jan 18, 2012 05:43 PM

                        The latest on this rather amazing saga:

                        Tomorrow, Thursday, Jan. 19, around 7:45 a.m., a conversation with Terry Valenti will be featured on the Shredd & Ragan show on 103.3-FM the Edge. Alan Bedenko who broke this story on his blog will be featured afterwards.

                        You can listen live here:

                        http://www.wedg.com/

                        Read more about this update here:

                        http://blogs.artvoice.com/avdaily/201...

                        I need a shower just thinking about this.

                        3 Replies
                        1. re: TrishUntrapped
                          LindaWhit Jan 18, 2012 06:14 PM

                          "It’s become the Valenti’s Restaurant Massacree." Tee hee!

                          1. re: LindaWhit
                            c
                            chileheadmike Jan 20, 2012 12:10 PM

                            Yes, bar are there 27 8x10 color photographs with circles and arrows splainin what each one is to be used as evidence against them?

                          2. re: TrishUntrapped
                            k
                            KailuaGirl Jan 19, 2012 04:27 PM

                            And now the owner's name is Lori Brucaglio? What happened to Ramos and/or Valenti?

                          3. TrishUntrapped Jan 17, 2012 03:29 AM

                            Alan Bedenko who broke the story about Valenti's on his blog:
                            http://blogs.artvoice.com/avdaily/201...
                            is scheduled to discuss the matter this morning around 8 a.m. WEDG 103.3. I don't get this radio station, hope it is taped.

                            5 Replies
                            1. re: TrishUntrapped
                              b
                              Buffalopundit Jan 17, 2012 12:35 PM

                              That's me! <a href="http://www.wedg.com/FlashPlayer/defau... a link to the audio.</a>

                              1. re: Buffalopundit
                                woodleyparkhound Jan 17, 2012 02:42 PM

                                Great that you were on the radio bringing attention to these losers! I've been lurking on the blog for days now - every time I check there are about 50 more posts ... and I've been checking 3-4 times a day! I am riveted by it ... and there is breaking news just about every time I check!

                                I was a bit surprised though, that the radio guys said a couple of times that they'd heard the food there was good. On the blog there are all kinds of links to reviews from people who thought it was godawful. It seems like the only good reviews are from the owners, masquerading as customers. I was wondering why you allowed that to go unchallenged?

                                1. re: woodleyparkhound
                                  b
                                  Buffalopundit Jan 18, 2012 09:05 AM

                                  Okun gave them a decent review, and there were some good reviews on Urbanspoon and elsewhere, and having not eaten there, I wasn't really interested in getting into a discussion about the quality of the food. I think the story has gone way beyond being about a restaurant and a lying cook.

                                  1. re: Buffalopundit
                                    j
                                    jeanmarieok Jan 18, 2012 09:13 AM

                                    I think you were smart. You are correct, this whole thing has taken on a life of it's own, far beyond lying about credentials....

                                2. re: Buffalopundit
                                  TrishUntrapped Jan 17, 2012 07:51 PM

                                  Good interview. What a story, absolutely wild!

                              2. m
                                mrkarma Jan 12, 2012 10:39 AM

                                The deadbeats are being evicted, and their truck repoed:
                                http://www.wkbw.com/home/Tenant-Landl...

                                4 Replies
                                1. re: mrkarma
                                  TrishUntrapped Jan 12, 2012 11:03 AM

                                  Poorly written article. But it does make the point that there is an eviction of sorts underway. Also, two wrongs don't make a right. The landlord's behavior sounds like it was way out of line.

                                  Someone, please dine there and report.

                                  1. re: TrishUntrapped
                                    p
                                    Puffin3 Jan 18, 2012 08:11 AM

                                    You think? If you were Terry's landlord you may have a different point of view visa vi getting YOUR kitchen equipment ripped off and having YOUR property vandalized. I'll bet you a million dollars that Terry and is psychopath girl friend WILL smash up whatever they can on the way out the door. Hell Terry might even enlist the Hells Angels/Bobby Flay and some of his buds from the CIA to help with the destruction of some one else's property. LOL

                                    1. re: Puffin3
                                      f
                                      freia Jan 18, 2012 09:30 AM

                                      Maybe the landlord and Terry could battle it out in Kitchen Stadium, over say parsnips? Winner takes the equipment and restaurant space?

                                    2. re: TrishUntrapped
                                      k
                                      KailuaGirl Jan 19, 2012 04:18 PM

                                      Let the lawyers battle it out. If any equipment or anything else in the restaurant is damaged or destroyed that would be a part of the lawsuit, seeking damages for unpaid rent and malicious damage to and/or destruction of property among other things. Landlord-tenant lawyers deal with this all the time.
                                      This guy Valenti sounds like a real sociopath. His wife is right up there with him. Her screeds are almost impossible to read they are so illiterate.

                                  2. woodleyparkhound Jan 12, 2012 08:58 AM

                                    I have been transfixed by this story for days. I check the website frequently, as new and fascinating information appears there continually as the story develops.

                                    http://blogs.artvoice.com/avdaily/201...

                                    2 Replies
                                    1. re: woodleyparkhound
                                      southernitalian Jan 12, 2012 11:42 AM

                                      It really is fascinating. I love how people are finding Lori's ranting and raving on other sites pretending to write positive reviews. If she'd just use some punctuation and an occasional capital letter, she might not be so easy to spot. I'd love it if she posted on here!!!

                                      1. re: southernitalian
                                        f
                                        freia Jan 19, 2012 04:30 PM

                                        done and DONE! Apparently...
                                        It's not hard to recognize writing styles and syntax I think.
                                        LOLOLOL
                                        Edit: alas the poster in question is no longer here...sigh...I'll bet a return visit will happen, though

                                    2. i
                                      INDIANRIVERFL Jan 10, 2012 08:36 AM

                                      This individual is the reason why I no longer eat the food at Capt . Hiram's. The biggest draw for locals is the ability to arrive by boat and use their dock while listening to cd accompanied musicians and drink booze.

                                      But then Central Florida is not much of a destination for gourmands or epicures.

                                      1. Bob W Jan 10, 2012 07:59 AM

                                        LOL I would love to watch Battle Parsnips!

                                        2 Replies
                                        1. re: Bob W
                                          TrishUntrapped Jan 10, 2012 08:35 AM

                                          I would too. Bring on the parsnips! Extra snippy for this one!

                                          1. re: TrishUntrapped
                                            Bob W Jan 10, 2012 10:15 AM

                                            I know we would hear Alton exclaim, "The ice cream machine!"

                                        2. p
                                          piano boy Jan 9, 2012 11:37 PM

                                          That was the funniest bed time story I've had in years. Thanks!

                                          1 Reply
                                          1. re: piano boy
                                            pitagirl Jan 10, 2012 07:57 AM

                                            well there's an hour I'll never get back! what a read!!!

                                          2. TrishUntrapped Jan 8, 2012 10:56 AM

                                            It will be interesting to see how the town embraces this restaurant.

                                            15 Replies
                                            1. re: Melanie Wong
                                              TrishUntrapped Jan 9, 2012 01:53 PM

                                              I love ArtVoice's Title: Two and a half WTFs

                                              http://blogs.artvoice.com/avdaily/201...

                                              1. re: Melanie Wong
                                                RC51Mike Jan 9, 2012 02:02 PM

                                                "...train wreck that I could not tear myself away from."

                                                I think I spent a couple hours at the office today reading and following the various links. What a psycho-social meltdown. Why this isn't a reality tv series I don't know. Some network out there has to be crass and low enough to turn it into one. Food Network is obviously up to the task (or down depending how you view it) but maybe they need to team up with one of the other low brow sensationalist channels to maximize the melodrama. Combo of food, crime drama, spurned lovers, nut jobs, it has it all.

                                                I understand gangs don't like it much when someone fakes membership like this guy apparently has done, so I can only assume at some point there will be a mob of toque wearing, rolling pin wielding CIA thug/chefs who beat him senseless.

                                                1. re: RC51Mike
                                                  TrishUntrapped Jan 9, 2012 02:26 PM

                                                  I don't know if Food Network could handle this, After all, this guy just pulled an "Irvine." Something the FN doesn't apparently deem to be of consequence.

                                                  http://www.sptimes.com/2008/02/17/Sou...

                                                  Oh, I am not trying to rehash the Irvine thing. Just responding to the above post.

                                                  1. re: TrishUntrapped
                                                    f
                                                    freia Jan 18, 2012 09:28 AM

                                                    Ha! I was JUST going to mention the "Chef" Irvine thing...only difference between the two is that one is promoted by FN and the other is trying to make a living. Interesting how harsh people are on this guy but will tune in happily to Restaurant Impossible on a weekly basis...

                                                  2. re: RC51Mike
                                                    goodhealthgourmet Jan 9, 2012 03:11 PM

                                                    I understand gangs don't like it much when someone fakes membership like this guy apparently has done, so I can only assume at some point there will be a mob of toque wearing, rolling pin wielding CIA thug/chefs who beat him senseless.
                                                    ~~~~~~~
                                                    LOL!

                                                    whomever said that the comments on that blog had "gone totally Jerry Springer — without the chairs" was absolutely right.

                                                    his wife sounds like she's several slices short of a full loaf, and he's clearly a sociopath. i'd really love to hear what he has to say for himself now that he's been outed, but i doubt we'll ever have the pleasure...

                                                    1. re: goodhealthgourmet
                                                      a
                                                      acgold7 Jan 9, 2012 05:37 PM

                                                      I especially like how the "wife" keeps logging in under a new and different user name every day, as if that's all it takes to make us ignore the hilariously illiterate writing....

                                                      1. re: goodhealthgourmet
                                                        TrishUntrapped Jan 9, 2012 07:09 PM

                                                        Jerry Springer without the chairs pretty much sums it up. I've come to the conclusion that the infamous Debra Farley is actually Kaiser Soze.

                                                        1. re: goodhealthgourmet
                                                          LindaWhit Jan 10, 2012 10:19 AM

                                                          LOL! I hadn't read this thread all the way through, but I also noted the Jerry Springer w/o the chairs comment, ghg. ;-)

                                                        2. re: RC51Mike
                                                          p
                                                          Puffin3 Jan 18, 2012 07:59 AM

                                                          Yeah 'Guy' F. would be the perfect host. LOL

                                                          1. re: RC51Mike
                                                            b
                                                            BrettLove Jan 19, 2012 12:40 PM

                                                            RC51Mike= hilarious!

                                                          2. re: TrishUntrapped
                                                            Melanie Wong Jan 12, 2012 09:59 AM

                                                            Guess we won't know, as my inquiry is no longer on the NY state board.

                                                            1. re: Melanie Wong
                                                              woodleyparkhound Jan 12, 2012 10:12 AM

                                                              That is strange and disappointing. I really can't imagine why it was removed. I was looking forward to reading any replies! I wonder what rules that post broke????

                                                              1. re: woodleyparkhound
                                                                Melanie Wong Jan 12, 2012 10:21 AM

                                                                It might have been attracting comments that were about the blog piece rather than the food, so therefore duplicative of this thread. If someone actually eats there, please report in.

                                                              2. re: Melanie Wong
                                                                b
                                                                Buffalopundit Jan 12, 2012 10:20 AM

                                                                Also, the restaurant is being evicted. http://www.wkbw.com/home/Tenant-Landl...

                                                                1. re: Melanie Wong
                                                                  f
                                                                  freia Jan 18, 2012 09:29 AM

                                                                  I heard of this on the NY boards first, and the thread vanished into the ether, no idea why either....but nice to see its made a reappearance here. I read the blogs, and LMAO!

                                                              3. a
                                                                acgold7 Jan 8, 2012 10:21 AM

                                                                That whole blog discussion is quite a soap opera. Enormously entertaining.

                                                                The guy claims to have been on ICA in 2003. We shot the four-episode "Pilot" (Battle of the Masters) in early 2004 and it aired at the end of April. The series version didn't begin airing until Jan 2005.

                                                                It always astonishes me how people can lie about stuff that's so easily verified.

                                                                4 Replies
                                                                1. re: acgold7
                                                                  m
                                                                  mrkarma Jan 8, 2012 10:44 AM

                                                                  Yes, I pointed out his claim about ICA in '03, when it wasnt even in existance that year. He also claims to be an ex Marine, went so far as getting a Marine tattoo, when he never did ONE DAY in the Marines. He claims to be a Hells Angels too even has AFFA tattooed on his fingers. He's a pathological liar, It's just he's finally getting caught in all his lies.

                                                                  1. re: mrkarma
                                                                    a
                                                                    acgold7 Jan 8, 2012 10:54 AM

                                                                    Is that your blog? I looked for your user name there but didn't find it. I should have pointed out that this was noted on that blog, but just wanted to bring that out here for those who didn't follow the link.

                                                                    What a sociopath. And his "wife" seems even worse.

                                                                    And shame on the "journalists" -- both print and TV -- who bought this line without doing the slightest bit of fact-checking.

                                                                    1. re: acgold7
                                                                      u
                                                                      uwsister Jan 9, 2012 05:57 AM

                                                                      Yeah, I mean the con artist couple is terrible but the food critic who's never heard of fact checking and writes like a high school dropout - "Garlic toast was sliced good and thick"? Ugh! Guess Buffalo News isn't exactly NY Times.

                                                                      I did find the blog and reviews of the restaurant very entertaining. Apparently when you order fish and chips there, you literally get fish and potato chips and they try to tell you it's their version of fish and chips. And so many shill reviews! If they spent time improving their recipe instead of postleviews online...

                                                                      1. re: uwsister
                                                                        j
                                                                        jeanmarieok Jan 10, 2012 11:56 AM

                                                                        The food critic has been around forever, too - she should know better.

                                                                2. m
                                                                  mrkarma Jan 8, 2012 07:44 AM

                                                                  Terry Valenti is a career con artist, you can read all about this at http://blogs.artvoice.com/avdaily/201...

                                                                  4 Replies
                                                                  1. re: mrkarma
                                                                    s
                                                                    Siun Jan 8, 2012 09:06 AM

                                                                    That's a wild read ...thanks!

                                                                    1. re: mrkarma
                                                                      nofunlatte Jan 8, 2012 09:18 AM

                                                                      I just read that whole comments section. Talk about entertaining.

                                                                      1. re: nofunlatte
                                                                        LindaWhit Jan 10, 2012 10:15 AM

                                                                        Loved this comment:

                                                                        "Comments section has gone totally Jerry Springer — without the chairs."

                                                                      2. re: mrkarma
                                                                        TrishUntrapped Jan 8, 2012 09:18 AM

                                                                        Thanks Mrkarma for the additional info.

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