The local foodie community was glued to ABC last night, hoping to catch a glimpse of Adam Pechal on "The Taste." As reported in the Bee and seemingly every other news outlet in the 916 area code, the co-owner of Tuli Bistro and Restaurant Thir13en is slated to be on this new cooking competition, which is something like "The Voice" but with chefs instead of singers. Well, last night's debut was pretty anti-climactic for locals, given that Pechal didn't receive any air time. However, these audition episodes of "The Taste" will continue next Tuesday night and Pechal dropped me a note to say he will "definitely be on next week."
So, the suspense continues for Sacramento. For those who like to see chefs get picked apart on national TV, last nights episode featured plenty of blunt critiques and a few bleeped out f-bombs from judge/mentor Anthony Bourdain. In this show, a combination of pro and home chefs make a dish that's served in a spoon - a single taste - that's served blind to a judging panel. In these first episodes, the judges are either eliminating the would-bes or choosing them to be mentored on a team. As the show rolls along, these teams headed by Bourdain, Nigella Lawson, Ludovic Lefebvre and Brian Malarkey will go through a series of culinary challenges that result in weekly eliminations. The last chef standing receives $100,000 and a new car.
Thus far, the home cooks have fared exceptionally well on "The Taste." Chooclate cake and mashed potatoes made by amateurs were among the selected "tastes" last night, while many frou frou chefs were sent packing. So, how will Pechal fare in the hot seat of national TV? Tune to ABC next Tuesday to find out.