If you needed any other reason to believe that the time for Dallas' varied and unique dining scene is finally starting to have the day in the sun it so deserves, turn on your television. Many of the city's best chefs, including Roe DiLeo, Patrick Stark, and (of course) John Tesar, are trying their hand at the celebrity chef life on various Food Network and Bravo properties, like Chopped and Cutthroat Kitchen. Now, Fort Worth chef Blaine Staniford, of acclaimed restaurant Grace, is throwing his hat into the reality TV ring.
There's no denying that the world of cooking shows can be entertaining at best, schlocky and gimmicky at worst. The show that Staniford will appear in, Kitchen Inferno , looks at first glance to be a mix of the two. According to a Food Network blog post about Kitchen Inferno, chefs will compete in a series of "fiery" challenges that progressively become more difficult. If the chef isn't up for the task, he'll have to forfeit his winnings and succumb to "blazing defeat."
If Staniford is up to the challenge, he could bring home a $25,000 cash prize. Between him and that cash, though, stands chef Elizabeth Falkner. Falkner is a Top Chef and Chopped alum (among other cooking shows), a much-lauded pastry chef and certainly a worthy challenger. The Food Network description for the episode that Staniford will appear in, titled "Burning Love," includes mention of an "ultimate BLT" dish that contains no lettuce, tomato or bacon, so who knows what the hell kind of wacky concoction Staniford has planned for his TV debut.
Longtime Food Network personality and Australian celebrity chef Curtis Stone will host Kitchen Inferno, which premieres on November 5. Notably, Dallas-based chef Jet Tila of Pakpao will appear in an episode as a challenger to a young up-and-comer. Blaine Staniford's episode, however, airs at 9 p.m. on November 19.
Keep the Dallas Observer Free... Since we started the Dallas Observer, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Dallas, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Dallas with no paywalls.