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Iron Chef America


Banco
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Word in today's Post Express has it that Mayor Williams is in New York today to be the featured guest on Iron Chef America.

Anyone care to bet on the likelihood of a dish that makes use of bowtie pasta?

Edited by Banco
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Anyone know if he's there in support of a competing D.C. chef?  Sorry if there's more detail in the article, I didn't see it.

In the Express it was just a blurb, but here's more detail from the mother paper (if you scroll down the Reliable Source past the Segway story):

>>He's a man without a restaurant, but that doesn't mean Morou Ouattara can't be an Iron Chef. Ouattara won the local competition for the Food Network's hit show in October, then lost his perch at Jack Abramoff's ill-fated Signatures restaurant just a month later. Undeterred, Ouattara and Mayor Anthony Williams will be in the Big Apple for today's taping of "Iron Chef America." Ouattara will go knife-to-knife with one of the show's celebrity chefs, Williams will yak up the city's restaurant scene, and the results will be broadcast later this spring."<<

This is good for DC. It is, right?

Edited by Banco
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On Galileo's website Alysa has announced the date of Roberto's rematch with Iron Chef Morimoto. It is Sunday, May 7th on the TV Food Network. Last year, for their initial confrontation Roberto hosted a party for about 150 people to watch the show on a large screen television he had installed for the occasion at Galileo. Alysa is confirming that they will do the same this year.

"Save the Date! Iron Chef America Rematch - Sunday May 7, 2006

On January 13th Chef Roberto Donna and Chef Masaharu Morimoto faced off in Kitchen Stadium for a rematch. Find out who won on Sunday, May 7th. We know it will be another great show and we're planning another great party to watch it. We hope you will join us.

Detailed information about this event will be announced soon."

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Joe, you noted recently that you were in the audience for the rematch taping. You indicated you can't discuss results, and I completely understand. Can you talk about the experience of attending?

For example, we see an edited hour on TV. How much time did it actually take to prep? How secret is the secret ingredient? How much time do the chefs take to discuss the game plan with the assistants? I'm always under the assumption that once they walk the ingredient to their prep area, they take a moment to determine exactly what's coming and who's doing what. And that's where they edit out some of the 30 minutes of the match that we don't see. How much time between the match ending and the judges eating? Can everything still be at proper temperature?

You know, questions like that. You're likely one of the only people in town whose been in the audience.

Edited by CrescentFresh
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Seriously good quesitons, the answer to some of them really surprised me. Honestly, no bs, I don't know what I can say-NOT about the match itself (obviously I can say nothing!) but I also don't know what I can say about the mechanics of the production and how they put it together. I promise to check on this and find out what, if anything, I (or anyone attending a taping) can write about it. If I am able to, after the show airs, I will post on the experience. If not, I sincerely thank Roberto and the producers for a wonderful memory that I do not want to abuse their allowing me to have experienced. Thanks for asking, though!

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This is all purely 2nd and 3rd hand knowledge, but as I understand it the American Iron Chefs are given a list of three possible ingredients beforehand, from which one is chosen at tape time. So it's nto unheard of for them to have 3 separate menus prepped. Apparently the original Japanese version did not have this advance notice (no prep) but a very brief (30 minutes or less) "organizational" period which is edited out of the taping. Again, I have no actual knowledge of this, just culled from various user accounts of varying veracity.

Joe H, care to validate or shoot down, either in part or in whole?

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The New York Times reported last year (at the opening of season one) that the chefs know in advance two possible secret ingredients, one of which is revealed during the show for them to prepare.

And unless audience members must sign a non-disclosure agreement about the production of the show, I don't know why they wouldn't be at liberty to discuss it.

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"And unless audience members must sign a non-disclosure agreement about the production of the show, I don't know why they wouldn't be at liberty to discuss it."

I suspect that all television shows taped in advance have one especially ones which have very small audiences.

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I believe Roberto was allowed to have a total of four guests of which I was extremely fortunate to be one. Hill Valley, I just scrolled through most of the 150+ posts for the link you gave and when I finally got to 4/21/04 and the link to the article-it was gone!!! Anyway, I just talked to Alysa and I believe because of the nondisclosure agreement that it is "safer" for me to describe the experience AFTER the show airs. I must note this, having looked through the lengthy eG thread: there are elements of the taping that no one seems to be aware of.

Anyway, it seems safer for me to discuss this AFTER the show airs. I'm really sorry but I just don't want to abuse the privilege of having been able to attend this.

Edited by Joe H
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The New York Times reported last year (at the opening of season one) that the chefs know in advance two possible secret ingredients, one of which is revealed during the show for them to prepare.

That is my understanding, and I got it from an unimpeachable source, whom I shall not name. I also believe the two are always very similar (for example, chicken and turkey, or lobster and crab), thus presumably making the (advance) preparation and practice of two menus a bit simpler for the contestants.

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That is my understanding, and I got it from an unimpeachable source, whom I shall not name.  I also believe the two are always very similar (for example, chicken and turkey, or lobster and crab), thus presumably making the (advance) preparation and practice of two menus a bit simpler for the contestants.

There is no way that this could not be the case. Some of the dishes they are putting together need to be coordinated ahead of time to be sure that they have the proper equipment and ingrdients. From the show there also seems to be very little communication between the chef and his/her assistants.

I take it this time Roberto completed the required number of dishes.

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How much time between the match ending and the judges eating?  Can everything still be at proper temperature? 

This is the one I can't figure out. Unless they're allowed to somehow cook everything over again, the food of the chef going second has got to really suffer after having sat around that long (especially if it was something fried).

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There is no way that this could not be the case.  Some of the dishes they are putting together need to be coordinated ahead of time to be sure that they have the proper equipment and ingrdients.  From the show there also seems to be very little communication between the chef and his/her assistants.

Someone earlier said they supposedly don't do this on the Japanese version. That may be so, but I have always wondered where all the really obscure ingredients that appear in making those dishes come from, including obscure western, let alone asian, ingredients. Same for equipment, etc. (bark from a particular tree that grows only in such and such prefecture. etc.). It's hard to believe the show could keep all those things, many of them perishable, in storage to suddenly be pulled out from the larder at literally a moment's notice. Seems more probable the chefs bring the odd stuff with them, knowing in advance what they will need.

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Someone earlier said they supposedly don't do this on the Japanese version.

Based on info from the eG link looks like I heard wrong. The original show also gave the chefs choices ahead of time. Somehow I remember that the choices for the Americanized version had been simplified a bit (whether by offering fewer choices or making them more compatible with a single pre-prepped menu, crab vs. lobster as was mentioned earlier).

Or I could be basing all of this conjecture on hearsay and fuzzy memory, which I am.

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The choices are not as significant as you might think; they have a limited amount of knowledge going in. More important: Ask yourself as Cresecent Fresh perceptibly did: how much time elapses between the time that the various dishes are completed and the judges take their first bite?

Edited by Joe H
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I just talked to Alysa and she has already sold a lot of tickets and believes it will be a sellout despite the 500 she expects for it. Anyone interested in going should call her and reserve your tickets now or they may be gone.

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I just talked to Alysa and she has already sold a lot of tickets and believes it will be a sellout despite the 500 she expects for it. Anyone interested in going should call her and reserve your tickets now or they may be gone.

500???? Is that possible???? If Roberto plans to have 500 people milling around I'm going to rethink it. Does his fire dept. permit allow that?

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500????  Is that possible????  If Roberto plans to have 500 people milling around I'm going to rethink it.  Does his fire dept. permit allow that?

Alysa said that she is planning for 500. My guess is that a lot of this will spill over onto the sidewalk and they may set up in other rooms, too, with many people standing. The atmosphere for this is going to be unreal with so many people.

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Alysa said that she is planning for 500.  My guess is that a lot of this will spill over onto the sidewalk and they may set up in other rooms, too, with many people standing.  The atmosphere for this is going to be unreal with so many people.

The Galleria website says it seats 400 theatre style, or 750 standing at maximum capacity, so it seems reasonable to assume a combination of both will still fit in the single atrium.

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Well, I'm wrong! "Old Ironstomach" (great handle) it IS at the Galleria across the street. Alysa said they do expect a huge turnout and wanted to be able to handle it which is why they moved it over there. In a conversation with her several minutes ago she has sold a lot of tickets but still has plenty left. She does expect 500 though. And, yes, this really is starting to sound like a very real festival type of atmosphere!

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Well, I'm wrong!  "Old Ironstomach" (great handle) it IS at the Galleria across the street.  Alysa said they do expect a huge turnout and wanted to be able to handle it which is why they moved it over there.  In a conversation with her several minutes ago she has sold a lot of tickets but still has plenty left.  She does expect 500 though.  And, yes, this really is starting to sound like a very real festival type of atmosphere!

OK, having it across the street does put a different light on it. But it certainly won't be like the previous party at the restaurant where it was a sit down dinner!

It still seems like a bit of a large crowd. We'll see.

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John, it was a buffet last time.  I have no idea what they will do for tables, chairs, etc.  But I wouldn't exactly call the last a "sit down dinner."

True it was a buffet, but you had a real place at a real table to sit and eat, with napkin and silverware. I don't know how many were there, but it was a looooong way from 500. I'm only wondering what sort of function it will be if it's that large.

Of course, it's not expensive, so one wouldn't expect a banquet. On the other hand, it is exactly the same price as was the dinner Sunday at Ray's (which was a sit down), so it will be an interesting comparison, FWIW.

Before somebody "corrects" me, Edited to note that the Ray's dinner itself was $35, with the extra to compensate for the paypal fee.

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There will be many singles at this. This is not like the dinners I've arranged at Laboratorio where I've introduced people; rather, just a boisterous gathering to cheer Roberto on. Still, I think you'll find many people from this board and Chowhound along with a number of whom that just wandered in off of the street hearing the the sound of hundreds of people public imbibing and screaming at the top of their lungs urging Roberto on! Seriously, I think you'll feel very comfortable. Arrive early, there will be a bunch of us there with a head start on wine. This is really more like a "sporting event" for food, a Roman coliseum confrontation if you will, that will be a lot of fun. I think the analogy to a carnival or festival is fair.

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It looks like the Galleria viewing event has turned into a benefit for Share Our Strength, as they had a booth today at the Grill and were selling tickets.

They have actually had this since the first email message about the event. If I remember correctly they are going to have a raffle and auction of some sort too.

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They have actually had this since the first email message about the event.  If I remember correctly they are going to have a raffle and auction of some sort too.

As the voice of Share Our Strength here, I can say that yes this event will benefit SOS, Roberto is giving the money from the raffle ($25 gets you a chance to win a Vespa) and live auction to Share our Strength to fight childhood hunger. It's going to be a fun night, I've even heard Savino (of Savino/Cloud) will be performing magic. I'm going to be out of the country but will be rooting for Roberto from his home country! Thank you Roberto!!

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Looking to assemble a DR group at Galleria for the Iron Chef Rematch May 7th. And perhaps a pre-event cocktail somewhere close. Any takers? I don't want to go alone. By the way, if you haven't already gotten your tickets, it's SOLD OUT. I am making the trek into the city early because traffic on Sunday is a bear. My plans are to arrive around 5pm, I think the doors open at 6:30. If anyone is interested, please let me know. If the weather is nice I plan on parking it outside somewhere (NB, Les Halles, other suggestions?) .

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The tickets for the Vespa raffle are still being sold at $25

Looking to assemble a DR group at Galleria for the Iron Chef Rematch May 7th. And perhaps a pre-event cocktail somewhere close. Any takers? I don't want to go alone. By the way, if you haven't already gotten your tickets, it's SOLD OUT.  I am making the trek into the city early because traffic on Sunday is a bear.  My plans are to arrive around 5pm,  I think the doors open at 6:30. If anyone is interested, please let me know. If the weather is nice I plan on parking it outside somewhere (NB, Les Halles, other suggestions?) .

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