New Episodes of Restaurant: Impossible and Chopped Champions

PRIMETIME PROGRAMMING PACKS A PUNCH WITH NEW SEASONS
OF ‘RESTAURANT: IMPOSSIBLE’ AND ‘CHOPPED CHAMPIONS’

NEW YORK – August 8th, 2011 Food Network primetime gets a makeover with six new episodes of Restaurant: Impossible beginning Wednesday, August 24th at 10pm ET/PT. Robert Irvine returns with even more daunting challenges as he attempts to turn around failing restaurants in just two days with only $10,000. Chopped Champions also returns for a third season, bringing four previous Chopped winners in each episode back to the kitchen to battle it out in its most exciting season to date, premiering Tuesday, August 30th at 10pm ET/PT. With judges including Aarón Sanchez, Alex Guarnaschelli and Geoffrey Zakarian, and even more outrageous basket ingredients than ever before, sixteen ferocious finalists will compete, but only one can claim the $50,000 prize.

Episodes include:
RESTAURANT: IMPOSSIBLE
 
Premiering Wednesday, August 24th at 10pm ET/PT
Restaurant Impossible“Pastori’s”
Robert takes his skills and knowledge to Connecticut where he must save not only a restaurant on the verge of collapse, but a family in despair. Pastori’s has been owned by Bill and Georgia Savvidis for more than two decades, and after many successful years, the Italian restaurant has fallen on hard times and is now only four to six months from closing forever. Robert is also confronted with a design in need of a serious facelift. He has two days and $10,000 to save this restaurant and family.
Premiering Wednesday, September 7th at 10pm ET/PT
“Scrimmages”
Robert travels to Scrimmages in Wilmington, Del. and quickly learns that the phrase ‘there is no I in team’ truly applies here. Scrimmages has been owned for five years by four equal partners: brothers Brian and Jerry, their childhood friend Mike and Brian’s former boss, Leon. As the revenues have disintegrated, so has the partnership. Robert has two-days and $10,000 to turn the restaurant around and mend the fences between battling partners.
 
Premiering Wednesday, September 14th at 10pm ET/PT
“Mamma D’s“
Robert travels to Mamma D’s in rural Pipersville, Penn. to find a place that is part restaurant, part vineyard and mostly petting zoo. Owners Luigi and Liz Desiato are all over the place with new ideas, and Robert is confused by what he sees and smells. In two days with $10,000 Robert must turn this disjointed establishment into a successful restaurant putting all the ideas the owners have into one cohesive unit.
 
Premiering Wednesday, September 21st at 10pm ET/PT
“Off Street Café”
This mission takes Robert to Cerritos, a small town in sunny Southern California. What he finds is the Off Street Café, a gloomy restaurant co-owned by Robin and Rose, an ex-mother and daughter-in-law team. Robert attempts to mend extended family fences and get the Off Street Café back on track.
 
Premiering Wednesday, September 28th at 10pm ET/PT
“The Trails “
Robert hits the road to San Diego, Calif., where he finds The Trails Eatery, an adorable café owned run by a young, energetic woman named Stacey. The surface looks great, but underneath the nicely painted exterior, is a business spiraling into bankruptcy. Robert uses two days and $10,000 to bring Stacey and her restaurant back to life.
 
CHOPPED CHAMPIONS
 
ChoppedPremiering Tuesday, August 30th at 10pm ET/PT
Four Chopped heroes return to the action to see who can go up against the best competition and win again. In the first round, time is the biggest challenge. Then, with the sting of the judges’ harsh criticisms fresh on their minds, the competitors face nettles and antelope in the entrée round. In the decisive last round, both chefs are craving a chance to move on, but only one will prevail after the judges taste the pie crust desserts.
Competitors: Heather Priest, Wayne Lyons, James Gillespie, Wade Burch
Judges: Alex Guarnaschelli, Geoffrey Zakarian, Marcus Samuelsson
Premiering Tuesday, September 6th at 10pm ET/PT
Four returning winners fight for a spot in the $50,000 grand finale competition. In the first round a pre-made breakfast food prevents some of the competitors from being as creative as they should, and presentation flaws plague the champs. The competitors try to figure out what to do with an expensive fish and an unusual snack food in the entrée round, and the two finalists have to do their best with a rare dough in the dessert round.
Competitors:   Shehu Fitzgerald, Alejandra Padilla, Michael Vignola, Danielle Saunders
Judges: Aarón Sanchez, Geoffrey Zakarian, Maneet Chauhan
Premiering Tuesday, September 13th at 10pm ET/PT
With only two spots remaining in the competition, four champs attempt to elbow their way to victory. In the appetizer round, the chefs struggle with a pretty fruit and a succulent seafood product. Then, they try to balance out the flavors of a large fish and a little cookie in the entrée round. With two champs left chomping at the bit to cook dessert, the judges decide which one can turn duck fat and guava paste into sweet perfection.
Competitors: Miguel Aguilar, Lauren Gerrie, Jamie Bisonnette, Laura Henry – Zoubir
Judges: Alex Guarnaschelli, Marc Murphy, Susan Feniger
 
Premiering Tuesday, September 20th at 10pm ET/PT
Four returning winners fight for the last remaining spot, and the heat is on when the chefs discover hot cross buns and a shocking meat in the appetizer basket. Then in the entrée round, the finalists try not to create a wreck with the wreck fish in the basket. The last two chefs must make delectable desserts using a box of something familiar plus a can of something sweet.
Competitors: Eric Levine, Marie-Claude Mendy, Justin Burdett, Alan Harding
Judges: Alex Guarnaschelli, Geoffrey Zakarian, Maneet Chauhan
Premiering Tuesday, September 27th at 10pm ET/PT
Only one two-time champ can claim the grand prize in the Chopped Champions finale. The chefs think they’ve caught a break when they find catfish in the first basket, but will the cherry soda sink them? Then in the entrée round, the chefs face a little pig, as they fight for the big money. The ingredients in the dessert basket seem surprisingly simple, but as the two remaining champs push themselves to make a dish to clinch the win they take some risky chances.
Judges: Aaron Sanchez, Alex Guarnaschelli, Marc Murphy

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Stuart is a celebrity chef, food activist and award-winning food writer. He penned the cookbooks Third Coast Cuisine: Recipes of the Gulf of Mexico, No Sides Needed: 34 Recipes To Simplify Life and Amigeauxs - Mexican/Creole Fusion Cuisine. He hosts two Internet cooking shows "Everyday Gourmet" and "Little Grill Big Flavor." His recipes have been featured in Current, Lagniappe, Southern Tailgater, The Kitchen Hotline and on the Cooking Channel.

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Stuart’s Honors & Awards
2015 1st Place Luck of the Irish Cook-off
2015 4th Place Downtown Cajun Cook-off
2015 2nd Place Fins' Wings & Chili Cook-off
2014 2015 4th Place LA Gumbo Cook-off
2012 Taste Award nominee for best chef (web)
2012 Finalist in the Safeway Next Chef Contest
2011 Taste Award Nominee for Little Grill Big Flavor
2011, 12 Member: Council of Media Tastemakers
2011 Judge: 29th Chef's of the Coast Cook-off
2011 Judge: Dauphin Island Wing Cook-off
2011 Cooking Channel Perfect 3 Recipe Finalist
2011 Judge: Dauphin Island Gumbo Cook-off
2011 Culinary Hall of Fame Member
2010 Tasty Awards Judge
2010 Judge: Bayou La Batre Gumbo Cook-off
2010 Gourmand World Cookbook Award Nominee
2010 Chef2Chef Top 10 Best Food Blogs
2010 Denay's Top 10 Best Food Blogs
2009 2nd Place Bay Area Food Bank Chef Challenge
2008 Tava: Discovery Contest Runner-up
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