Next Thursday night, the MET Back Bay will be featured on the new Food Network show, “Chef Wanted” with Anne Burrell. Kathy Sidell, the owner of the MET Restaurant Group, will be appearing on the show as well.
“Chef Wanted” is yet another food-based reality show competition series, but rather than compete for some sort of cash prize, contestants on this show are all vying for the real-life job of head chef of that particular restaurant. A new restaurant is featured in each episode, starting off with four competitors who are eventually narrowed down to just one winner through a series of cooking, managing, and menu design challenges. The show is hosted each week by Anne Burrell, who also regularly hosts “Secrets of a Restaurant Chef” also on the Food Network.
Sidell, as the restauranteur, will be assigning the challenges and tasks to the contestants, and eventually making the final decision regarding the winner. That winner will become the new head chef of the restaurant. Sidell is a fan of healthy competition, as her holiday parties for MET staff require the teams of attendees to prepare food pairings with four wines they are given from a particular region. Independent judges at the party help choose the winners, who then receive a fabulous dinner prize.
Viewing parties will be taking place at all of the MET Restaurant Group locations, including the Back Bay, Chestnut Hill, Natick, Dedham, and Nantucket, starting at 10 p.m. on July 26th.
On Sunday evening, the Food Network debuted the latest season of “Worst Cooks in America.” Now in its second season, this time hosted by chefs Anne Burrell and Robert Irvine, the show follows the journey of 16 of America’s most talentless kitchen oafs in their quest to gain the skills necessary to put together an edible meal. This season features two Massachusetts natives, both from the Greater Boston area. Eric Ricupero of Quincy, MA, is the 34-year-old owner of Yesterday’s bar, and Jeff Longcor, 25, is an environmental contractor from Somerville.
For the audition, Ricupero soured the palates of the judges with his version of sweet and sour chicken. Longcor butchered a burrito. Both men earned their place on the show by showing a startling lack of culinary common-sense, and both were picked by Chef Burrell to be on Chef Irvine’s blue team. In the very first challenge, contestants had to replicate a recipe taught to them by each of their head chefs using a chicken they butchered themselves.
Ricupero had hoped to use the prize money to help improve his bar, and use his newly acquired culinary schools to help improve the menu at his establishment, but it was not to be. Unfortunately for the bar owner, his lack of skills were far too glaring to ignore, and he was cut after the very first episode. For Longcor, he gets to continue on learning how to become a better, more competent cook, in an attempt to win the $25,000 top prize. The show will continue for the next seven weeks, airing at 9PM every Sunday on the Food Network.
On May 10 and 11, the Food Network is coming to Boston in hopes of finding people with absolutely atrocious skills in the kitchen, in hopes of casting them for season 2 of “Worst Cooks in America”, hosted by Anne Burrell and Beau MacMillan. Despite being the network known for featuring some of the most seasoned chefs and other culinary professionals, this show is strictly in search of those with a serious lack of skill when it comes to cooking. Interested participants should email [email protected]. There, you can nominate yourself or someone you know to participate. Please include in the email, the name, age, hometown, occupation, contact phone number, and a recent photo of the prospective poor food preparer.
The Boston area interviews will take place on May 10th And 11th with the location given only to those receiving appointments through email reply. If selected for the second season of the show, contestants will be put through a sort of cooking boot camp, in hopes of teaching them the necessary skills for becoming a satisfactory chef de cuisine. Only 12 will be selected to participate in the 6-episode series to compete for a grand prize of $25,000.
For more information, visit the website www.worstcookscasting.com.
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