28 June 2008

The Food Network Food & Wine Festival NYC-2008

I am a Food Network Junkie and wholeheartedly admit to it. I would say at least half of my television viewership goes to the likes of shows like Bobby Flay's 'Showdown' and 'Boy and Grill', Giada's 'Everyday Italian', 'Iron Chef', and 'Unwrapped', to name a few. So I'm really excited about this years Food Network Food & Wine Festival in NYC.

On Food Network, food is art, and it is displayed at its best in a way which is enthusiastic and positive. You would think that looking at all varieties of foods, from hot dogs to grilled sirloin to southern style biscuits, for an extended period of time, would have you obsessing about food. But I find it does the opposite. You have the opportunity to gain a healthier perspective on food when you're learning about the history of a food or how to prepare an everyday food in another way, or discovering a food you had not known much about before.

It also helps to see a healthy looking host like Giada De Laurentiis, Bobby Flay, Rachel Ray, Paula Deen and the like, enjoying and preparing all types of food, realistically, with no guilt and self-deprivation. You see first hand how Giada for example skillfully incorporates her love for chocolate in her cooking, while still finding a way to represent all food groups, including fruits and vegetables. Through her show and others like it, the message is always that food is joyous and eating should be a wonderful, uplifting experience.

The emphasis in not on how can this food make me feel better, or how can I avoid eating this or avoid eating that, or on any of our many phobias about food. On the Food Network the focus is plain and simple; it's just about the food and giving it due respect. You see this in the colorful words used to describe food, in the vivid depiction of the food itself, to even in the details of the kitchen design and utensils used.

I've seen tapings of past Food & Wine events and it seems to be a fun time, and with the NYC flavor at this year's event, it should really be good.


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