Preview: Travel Channel’s Feed the Beast

From Travel Channel, the network that has brought us some cool food shows the last few years such as the Adam Richman Man vs. Food franchise, and various Andrew Zimmern and Anthony Bourdain shows, comes a hip new gluttonous guilty pleasure–Feed the Beast, hosted by Mikey Roe. The show premieres on Wednesday, March 6 with two 30-minute episodes back to back at 9:00 pm and 9:30 pm ET/PT, with the San Francisco and Austin episodes first in line.

The premise of the show is that Roe is a creature of late night, and appreciates everything that the midnight to sun-up time frame has to offer–from night life, to parties, to–you guessed it–food. And, just like night life in general, the craziest combinations and food offerings are also abundant after midnight. Roe is someone who really appreciates these foods too, and he also appreciates the atmosphere, activities and the alcohol that goes along with that food. He also knows where to go, and as a hybrid of, say, Richman and Guy Fieri, Roe knows how to make you want to try some of this crazy food right along with him. In fact, after watching the screeners on Sunday, my wife and I cooked up some Mexican breakfast for dinner.

You won’t believe some of the things Roe gets to eat, and it’s remarkable that he samples all of the crazy combinations of foods–for example, deep fried peanut butter and jelly sandwich followed by a jackalope sausage and bacon bloody mary. I don’t know if these were literally filmed in one night, or if there was much editing to be done, but if it’s all in one night, I’m seriously impressed by how much of an iron stomach Roe has.

Fans of some of the above mentioned shows are going to love Feed the Beast, and are going to love watching Mikey Roe take us to these crazy places. I just know it.


DVD review: Bitter Feast

Chef JimLet me preface this by saying I’m not a horror flick guy. I think you either are or you’re not, and I’m not. But that said, when “Bitter Feast” was pitched to me, it was pitched as “a horror flick for foodies.” And of course, they hook you in by telling you Mario Batali, the same Mario Batali who is an Iron Chef on Food Network, stars in the film. Well, okay, why not then?

So the story, created by Joe Maggio, takes place in what appears to be New York City, but I’m not sure that is ever referenced. Chef Peter Grey’s (James LeGros) world starts caving in around him when his TV show is canceled, and then he receives a bad review by notorious food blogger JT Franks (Joshua Leonard), which then leads to poor attendance at the restaurant where he is executive chef, owned by a fellow named Gordon (Batali). Gordon fires Grey, which is hilarious only because we get to see Mario Batali drop F-bombs like nobody’s business. And he fires him mostly because of that review.

Of course, this sends Grey into a tizzy and he can only suppress his rage for so long. We also find out along the way that Grey killed his older brother as a young boy in self-defense, so we know what he’s capable of. Franks, meanwhile, is having his own problems at home after his 2-year old son dies from cancer, and he and his wife are having problems coping and also getting along themselves. Grey knocks Franks out in a dark alley and drags him to what appears to be a cabin in the middle of nowhere, probably meant to be upstate New York.

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