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TV diners

by Ross Bruniges on October 2nd, 2010

I remember the days when Master Chef was full of women from the WI and food programs contained people showing you how to cook food but this memory is fast fading away. It seems that I can fill all of my TV time now watching food programs whether they be a ‘magazine’ style show (Saturday Kitchen), some form of competition (Master Chef), food holiday shows (The Hairy Bikers) or, heaven forbid, an actual old fashioned program where we are shown recipes and how you cook them. It seems that food has gotten rather popular all of a sudden and the folk in TV land want to feed our appetite to the max!

It’s very clear that many people watch them (I’m certainly one) but clearly some people can watch too much. I had to laugh a bit as on Master Chef THE PROFESSIONALS a clear Nigella wannabee admitted that most the things she knows she learnt from TV shows; she was shit and booted off at the first hurdle. But with all this choice what should you actually watch?! Here are a few of my favourites:

Gordon Ramseys Best Restaurant, 9pm on a Tuesday, Channel4

A show which really puts Ramsey in his element; his restaurant empire is taking a bit of a pasting at the moment (I will never forgive him for Maze Cape Town) with all his good chefs leaving him, him loosing stars and money but still he is able to be angry on TV and bring in viewers.

As Ramsey looks to crown the ‘UK best restaurant’ he puts a large scale London restaurant against a slightly smaller ‘under-dog’ style one and:

  • fills their restaurant full of wankers he has put together on a bus to see how they handle the pressure and tells them that they are shit
  • sends famous food critics with video cameras to ‘secretly’ film what it’s like when he isn’t around and tells them that they are shit
  • has them cook in his kitchen and while they get used to the unfamiliar surroundings tells them that they are shit

After all of that he gets quite chummy with them and decides which one he thinks is best (so far the ‘underdog’ has won each time). I like the idea that these restaurants are getting greater exposure and Gordon gets to swear his head off but I don’t like that I’ll never be able to go to the ones I like the look off as they’ll be booked out for months. Swings and roundabouts….

Saturday Kitchen, 10am on a Saturday, BBC1

A great show and a real Saturday staple. While the celebrity guests are sometimes pretty shit and clearly booked on to promote something opposed to their ‘passion for food’ it’s easy watching. OK it gave the world exposure to that douche Olly Smith but it’s eased me into more Saturdays after feeling hung-over than I can remember.

The only gripe I have about it is that my applications have so far been rejected, but if I ever do get on it will be one not to miss.

Man vs Food, (cable only)

I REALLY got into this show over Christmas when at home and enjoying my parents cable TV and now in October still think that it’s awesome!

Man vs food - failure in imminentAdam Rickman is close of bursting

Basically it’s part food holiday show as the presenter (who is rather American but quite funny) goes around various states of America, meets people and eats food and THEN challenges himself to a gut-busting food challenge. We’re not talking easy challenges here as in the past he has attempted 2kg steaks, 30” pizza’s or more milkshake than you’d ever consider drinking (though I might if it’s part of a challenge); not only are the challenges mind blowingly amazing but even better 8 times out of 10 he fails and is epically sick.

This is a show really after my own heart.

From → Random thoughts