Last week my friend Jackie invited me to a sneak preview event for The Next Food Network Star at the Crosby Hotel in Soho. The plan was to watch a clip of the season premiere, and then have a Q&A with Alton Brown, Giada De Laurentiis and Bobby Flay followed by hors d’oeuvres.
I have to admit, this was my first time watching Food Network Star, and the show looked really interesting!
In previous seasons, Alton, Giada and Bobby were judges for the show. This season, they are mentors and they each have a team that they chose themselves after viewing hundreds of audition tapes. While watching the show, you can refer to each team on Twitter as #TeamAlton, #TeamGiada or #TeamBobby.
Team Alton is full of quirky personalities with an interesting take on food, he said that most important thing he looked for in a member for his team was the ability to teach. Team Giada is the personality team, they’re very…smiley. (Alton jokingly called them “Team Dental Plan” during the Q&A.) Giada said she looked for people who could effectively project their personalities on camera. Team Bobby is full of chefs. His main criteria? His team members needed to know how to cook, and well! I’m not surprised at all since Bobby is such an amazing chef himself.
Now on to the first episode: I won’t tell you what happens, but I will say that I was very pleasantly surprised! It looks like this season will be full of blood, sweat and tears. Emotions will be running high, and the stakes will be even higher. The best part of this season of Food Network Star? At the end of the season, YOU get to choose who wins! Contestants will be eliminated week to week by judges from Food Network, but in the last two episodes it will be up to the audience to choose who wins the whole thing. You’ll be able to vote through FoodNetwork.com, so make sure you watch to see who you like best! And no, I don’t know how the first episode ends because they only allowed us to watch the first half, so I’ll be tuning in as well!
This season of The Next Food Network Star premieres on Sunday, May 13th at 9pm/8c on the Food Network, of course!
Here’s a picture of the mentors during the Q&A:
The Q&A session was GREAT! These guys are all so funny and personable. First of all, they look and act EXACTLY the way they do on TV and they are just so nice and charming, it was hard not to smile the whole time. Everyone laughed a lot, and even they admitted that they would never have made it as contestants on the show (my question!) because it was so amazingly difficult.
After the Q&A, Alton Brown stood at the door and shook the hand of every person coming out of the screening room. He is such an awesome guy! That made me like and respect him even more. Later on, Jackie and I took pictures by the Food Network screen: (Please excuse me looking a hot mess, it was after work and the humidity was AWFUL!)
Little did we know, Alton and Bobby were right behind us after we took the pictures! I was lucky enough to be able to take pictures with both of them:
After that, it was eating time! And I can tell you the food was so good that I didn’t even think of taking a picture of it because I ate it, lol! Hopefully I’ll get invited to future Food Network events so I’ll have more wonderful posts to write! I promise next time I’ll look a little more polished, haha.
Are you going to tune in to Food Network for the season premiere of The Next Food Network Star? What do you think of the new format? Be sure to let me know what you think on Sunday when it airs!
Also, make sure to follow @FoodNetwork, @AltonBrown, @GDeLaurentiis, and @BFlay on Twitter if you’ll be tweeting during the show! (You can also follow me if you want: @versinox)