ELV note: America’s Best hits the airwaves and ether next Monday night and will broadcast each of its four episodes, in succession, on the following three evenings.”Why,” you are asking yourself right about now, “is ELV taking such a keen interest in a Food Network premier?” Well, it just so happens that the World’s Greatest Restaurant Critic* will be featured among the many talking heads/food writers/gourmands/chefs/mixologists/raconteurs who will be weighing in on everything from what makes a perfect steak, to where you can find the best comfort food in America.
Our lengthy taped interview took place back in May in an empty Santa Monica bar, and consisted of the producer firing questions at us ranging from what constitutes the perfect grilled cheese sandwich, to why we think New England clam chowder on the New England shore** tastes different (and better) than it does anywhere else. Being the shy, diffident and retiring type, yours truly laboured mightily to think of something to say, but somehow was coaxed, practically against his will, to venture an opinion or two. How much of what we said gets broadcast is unknown, but we expect snippets of our fat head and big mouth will pop up throughout the show.
Tony Abou-Ganim fans will be happy to know his considerable presence will pop up from time to time on the program as well (he arrived for his interview while we were on camera), along with other interesting people in the food world who actually know what they’re talking about.
Alton Brown tours America’s Best chosen by Food Network Magazine with four premiere primetime specials.
Premieres Monday, September 20th at 9pm
From the best no-nonsense pizza and golden hand-cut fries to the best fresh spaghetti and buttery mashed potatoes, everyone appreciates the culinary reassurance of comfort food. Alton Brown hunts down 10 of America’s Best comfort food locations chosen by Food Network Magazine highlighting eateries in Ann Arbor, Mich.; Boise, Idaho; Decatur, Ga.; Las Vegas; Miami; Nashville, Tenn.; New York; Philadelphia; and San Francisco.
Premieres Tuesday, September 21st at 9pm
The finest food destinations offer dynamite dining punctuated by a little sophistication, and Food Network Magazine found the very best. From romantic sunsets and secret speakeasies to cowboy cookouts and culinary boot camps, Alton visits 10 of the best dining destinations in Big Sur, Calif.; Cleveland, Ohio; Las Vegas; Los Angeles; Napa Valley, Calif.; New York; Orlando, Fla.; Portland, Ore.; Scottsdale, Ariz.; and Walland, Tenn.
Premieres Wednesday, September 22nd at 9pm
Classic dishes like gumbo, cheesesteaks, and clam chowder define America’s regions and Food Network Magazine editors map out the country’s best. Alton Brown tastes the ultimate regional cuisine in Atlanta; Boston; Charleston, S.C.; Chicago; Lockhart, Texas; Los Angeles; New Orleans; New York; Raleigh, N.C.; and West Yarmouth, Mass.
Premieres Thursday, September 23rd at 9pm
Food Network Magazine editors combed the country for 10 of America’s Best sweets locations ranging from superlative soufflés and to-die-for donuts to innovative ice creams and fresh strawberry shakes. Alton Brown takes viewers on a tour through Columbus, Ohio; Glendora, Calif.; Key West, Fla.; Madison, Wis.; New Orleans; New York; Plant City, Fla.; Portland, Maine; San Francisco; and St. Louis.
* Self-proclaimed, but also heartily endorsed as such by Evan James Curtas — DOB 9-7-10 — tiny, illiterate, soft-headed and toothless, but even at one week of age showing the appetite, discernment and good taste for which he will be known.
** In New England, it’s never “the beach” (as ocean beaches are referred to along the Atlantic seaboard) or “the coast” (as Californians call it), but always “the shore.”