So You Wanna Be a Food TV Star? 5 Tips from the Pros
By Kathleen Squires
August 20, 2013
Photo by: Diane Bondareff/Invision for FOOD & WINE
This year, the Food Network celebrates its 20th birthday. And Nielsen Media Research granted a fitting present, announcing that the network drew record viewership in 2012. As the profile of food-related TV continues to grow, so do culinary personalities striving for airtime. At this year's Food & Wine Classic in Aspen, American Express even sponsored a panel about “Breaking into Broadcast” for a crew of food writers, chefs and restaurateurs hoping to add some TV work on the resume. At the panel, experts Sue Feniger, Steve Dolinsky, Ming Tsai and Michael Voltaggio offered tips on the first step to food television fame: surviving the live cooking segment. Here’s a video where four hopefuls (including yours truly) tried to hold their own with various types of “host” archetypes (we feel for anyone who has to cook with Jimmy Fallon).
The experience caused us to think about what other attributes one needs to have in order to make it on food TV. Here are the top five things we learned from two decades worth of programming.