Next Iron Chef Exit Interview: Chef Caswell’s Parting Words

by in Shows, November 8th, 2010
Chef Caswell's advice for future NIC rivals: "Keep your head down, work within your comfort zone and push, baby, push."

What did you take away from the experience of competing on The Next Iron Chef?
I walked away with the satisfaction of being able to compete at this high level, and knowing I was competitive. It also gave me the opportunity and platform to do what I do best: Show off my region, the Gulf Coast, and my hometown of Houston.

How did you feel about the dishes that sent you home when you presented them?
I don’t think any chef feels great about dishes that have to be judged two hours after you plate them.

If you could have a do-over, what would you change about that fateful dish?
Probably should have stayed away from the crab.

What advice would you give future Next Iron Chef contestants?
The competition is just as much about endurance as anything else. Keep your head down, work within your comfort zone and push, baby, push.

Look inside Chef Caswell’s Next Iron Chef journal and flip through our behind-the-scenes gallery from Episode 6.

More about Bryan Caswell
Follow @wholefish on Twitter
Reef Restaurant
Bryan’s blog: Whole Fish

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Comments (46)

  1. Blue says:

    All very interesting, but let's not forget that IC is all about "entertainment" as are all the Food Network shows. If its not entertaining – its gone. You want a "real" food experience – pick a chef you admire and eat at his/her bistro. Do I have a favorite in the running – doesn't matter, does it? Some things are pre-written.

    • The JillyBean says:

      Add to that, the chef's themselves are on the shows to promote their enterprises (restaurants, kitchenware, food products) and make their bank accounts fatter. Face it this channel is less about teaching the public how to cook and enjoy food, rather more about pushing crap from the local Target/Wal-Mart/department store and promoting restaurants. Boring.

      • niccosmom says:

        I have to agree it is entertainment…and yes were not all entertained…I feel its the excutives who think they know what is best…but they get fogged out on their thinking…sure eat at my favorite chefs restaurant..but to watch them would be better…if you had the opportunity to make money by teaching and selling your cooking supplys you would..so jealousy is ugly..sorry

    • Grandscholar says:

      Entertainment: yes, insulting my intelligence: no. Judges should know their stuff, rules have to reasonable and applied consistently. A judge eating a whole chili pepper (or banana peel) and blame the chef? Using pneapple with meat is "arrogance"? That's too much.

      And Contestants should be covered evenly and truthfully, etc. As someone pointed out, Canora's on-camera personality might just be the result of selective editing.

      I don't root for particular chefs; I like to see innovative techniques and approaches to the challenge. (I don't watch cooking-demonstration shows because, unlike in competition shows, one can't really gauge how good the recipes/techniques actually are.) For this reason I would like to see Caswell and Tsai at the end.

  2. Cyndi C. says:

    No!! Tio is gone!! But Tsai is too! My vote is for Forgione. Canora whines way too much for me.

  3. niccosmom says:

    I love chef Tsai- I'm over the show..very upset it feels fixed…I can't stand Canora. I feel we are the ones that keep the show going we are the ones that watch..the job of the show is to find good people to give us a good show…I'm really feel Canora would try anything to get Tsai out.. Ming Tsai was nothing but kind, level-headed, and good spirited..he was always in it 100% …I feel I wont watch the show if the annoying Canora is on..boring…
    since I'm on a rampage..let me just tell you how grossed out I am that the Tom Pizzica has a show…I would watch him to see if he washed his hands..a dirty collage boy with food all over his face..I gag in my mouth when he eats..yuck!!!

  4. Maria V says:

    Canora whines like a girl. How can he still be in the running? No grace…no finesse at all. I agree with most of the comments here and will also stop watching this show. BTW, what's with Simon M and pineapple? Has he now heard of sweet&sour pork? Maybe he's too snooty for. I think this show has been set-up from the start. Neither Canora nor Forgione are Iron Chef material nor are they worthy of stepping into Mario Batali's shoes.

  5. Jack says:

    Tsai should have won. Get that crybaby Canora off the air.

  6. Sophia says:

    My absolute favorite Caswell moment was when he tried to figure out something between linebacker and ballerina. "NBA basketball player." Classic.

  7. secret man says:

    oh, he is a good one as i know what other cooker do. yet he is the best one as someone
    said somebdoy didnt look at all before he is gone .not so fast but he is fast and sooo
    good un till i keep coming back for caswel and also at tony madola, too!

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  10. Chef in Training says:

    I find his final advice for aspiring contestant applicable to my case. For my part, I experiment a lot with my signature marinade to improve my dishes.

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