Phil Rosenthal visits kitchens on and off the well-worn gastronomic path, leading viewers from one of the least expensive Michelin-starred restaurants in Asia to a Los Angeles bakery training former gang members.
Enthusiasm. Empathy. Joy. Curiosity. Genuineness. These are the things that make this one of the best food shows ever. I've watched food shows since The Frugal Gourmet and Great Chefs of the West were on Saturday Mornings on PBS--well before Food network. I have to say, though, that Phil's food journeys have been one of my favorite things in quite a while.
Here's how great this show is: I've traveled a little bit overseas and domestically. When I talk about where I've been, it's mostly about what I ate there. I have a dream to go to Argentina- -not for the tango, but the beef. So, when I started watching this series during its run on PBS, I was enchanted by a kindred spirit. However, beyond just that, he's convinced me that I want to go to Tokyo. Before watching the episode about Tokyo, I had ZERO desire to go there- -He's just that convincing!
I would also add one major draw to this series- -Phil is the anti-Bourdain. Whereas Anthony Bourdain smirks through his food journeys, Phil's wondrous smile and ebullient interactions carry no smugness or satire. Though Phil has been around the world, he continues to be in awe of it.
Here is the best metaphor I can come up with to describe this show. When i was younger, I thought that a world-weary, snarky, dark boyfriend was the coolest/best thing out there. Then I had a sweet, giving, caring boyfriend and realized I had been missing out on genuine connection. It's the same thing with Phil--you connect with him and his joie de vivre and you realize all the things that you hadn't realized you wanted but had been missing!
I hope this was just an amuse-bouche, and Phil goes more places and takes us with him to eat!
What a wonderful program! Phil has a knack for making his travels and experiences so filled with fun and emotion that I want to visit every place that he visits. Every new episode adds a new place to my bucket list. Plus all the food makes my mouth water. Everything is gorgeous and fun. The episode from Florence, Italy is my favorite. How wonder to see old friends get together after so many years. I love every minute of this series!
This is the nicer, happier, sunnier version of what Bourdain does. Comedy writer Phil goes to very nice places, eats very nice food, meets chefs and purveyors and has a wonderful time. It is a family thing with his brother as part of the crew and video visits with their parents, aka the source of Phil's comedy. Phil's wife and kids also pop up from time-to-time.
The magic of this series is that Phil eats lots of amazing food and stays quite lean. He does say he walks quite a bit from one meal to the next. Maybe the gourmand's weight loss secrets is a book in the making.
Hits all qualities necessary for engaging travel show...Access: being creator of one of world's favorite US sitcoms opens doors; humor: more sophisticated, better educated version of Ray: curious: eats multicoursed meal based on worm-like rice eels, with a smile; charms locals: convinces entire non-English speaking,, very traditional Japanese family to try his egg creams--and they ask for seconds, with a smile
If you haven't seen this show, I highly recommend it. It's family friendly and educational showing different cultures and locations around the world, and oh yes, Phil is a very funny guy! We are actually going to two of the restaurants Phil went to in Florence Italy per the show!
I had no idea who Phil was, but I found him very interesting to watch. The more I watched, the more I fell for this guy. No wonder he was such a success, this show is much like his other show, endearing as well as entertaining. Thank you Phil!