14 Things You Didn’t Know About Alton Brown

by in Food Network Chef, Shows, January 14th, 2014

10 Things You Didn't Know About Alton BrownMost fans believe Alton Brown‘s a walking food dictionary (and he is). He’s the ultimate commentator on Iron Chef America, he’s a mentor and judge on Food Network Star and no one will ever forget Good Eats. But there’s still so much to learn about this pillar of Food Network. FN Dish caught up with Alton on the set of his newest show, Cutthroat Kitchen, where he chatted about survival techniques for future competitors and even a couple things you may not know about the man who so many admire and look up to.

1. When Alton was younger, he always thought he would end up directing movies, which is what he trained for. “Only I got sidestepped into commercials for a long time.”

2. Alton spends a lot of time flying airplanes.

3. Alton plays multiple instruments including the guitar. “I always travel with a guitar when I’m on the road.” He also sings with his trio on his live tour.

4. Going along with music: Alton almost always listens to music while he cooks. The playlist depends on the day. “I’m anywhere from opera to Led Zeppelin — and everywhere in between. My daughter is 14 and listens to a lot of pop stuff, so I tend to gravitate way, far away from whatever she’s listening to. I have music on in the kitchen all the time. The last 10 things I cooked were probably to mid-’70s Elton John,” Alton shared with FN Dish.

5. Alton is terrified of calf’s liver. “I’ve tried it and I can’t make it edible. I don’t like anyone else’s either — and mine is just worse,” Alton adds.

6. “While I like eating artichokes, I hate cooking them. It’s so much work. Who decided we should even eat that?”

7. “I love watches, though my collection is small.”

8. Alton has a lot of glasses. “When you have to wear them every day, you tend to switch them up.”

9. Alton’s bow tie collection: “I have 200 bow ties at home. I inherited most of them. When an art school professor retired, he sent me his collection, which was 145 bow ties that he collected over a 30-year period.”

10. What’s the most-memorable item Alton’s received from a fan? “Just last year someone gave me a homemade ceramic dog treat jar made to look like my corgi, Sparky. And darn if it doesn’t look just like him.”

11. “I’m addicted to canned sardines,” Alton admits.

12. When Alton was a kid, he wanted to be Jacques Cousteau.

13. “I would ride a motorcycle every day if I could.”

14. Alton has over 2,000 cookbooks in the library at his office.

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Comments (69)

  1. JenLyne says:

    One of the things I like about Cutthroat Kitchen is instead of having a mystery basket (like Chopped), the chefs choose their own ingredients. The sabotages are not meant to be mean, or at least I don't think they are meant that way. It adds the element of surprise to the game and pushes the competitors to find creative ways around the challenges thrown in their path. The competitors can be really rude to each other at times…. but I don't see it as being mean, rather they are trading well intentioned insults with their peers. However, that said, there have been a few competitors that got a little nasty with their attitudes and manners and it can change the atmosphere of the game.

    Another thing I like about Cutthroat Kitchen is the things that happen behind the scenes. I was watching a few reruns of CK and learned that the produce left over from the show (stuff that nobody selected to use) was donated to a local food shelf. Just because you don't see the good things the show (and it's staff) does, doesn't mean it doesn't happen.

  2. Viree Cabral says:

    I Love this show and Alton Brown who is just downright funniest person I've seen in a long time. He is sinister and he loves it. So do I. No one in my family likes it like me. I'm not very nice if I don't get to watch that one night. I give up the TV for just about every thing else. I love the sabotages they are great. I like the judges to and love to see them on the hot seat… My sister just doesn't understand this. I told her it's not mean really just really humorous. Like uh, Halloween….well maybe not that bad… seeing some of those awful costumes. Sorry Alton yelled at that woman he better apologize, altho we all have bad days…

  3. James says:

    Whatever happened to being able to buy "early" seasons of Good Eats? I'm searching for an episode that I believe was in season six.

  4. cody says:

    Alton be cray cray ya'll!

  5. D. Gauss says:

    Just watched Count down to Turkey Day which was hysterical. That should keep everyone from ever cooking a turkey. The potatoes were worse. Hope you don't actually do this. If you use Yukon Golds, you just clean them( don't peel), cut into large chunks and boil in Chicken bouillon for 15 min. Drain and add milk and butter. Season to taste. You can use a potato masher or a fork. They are so fluffy, you don't need anything else. For Thanksgiving, I use cream and roasted garlic. Still only takes me 5 min. Don't ever use a beater or you may as well just use potato flakes. I've been cooking for 55 years and teaching for 40. I have a degree in Food Science- lots of Chemistry classes. My father was a chemical Engineer for Pillsbury.

  6. Count me in as one of the folks who really likes Alton Brown, who really misses Good Eats, and really doesn't like Cutthroat Kitchen. Years ago I did briefly meet Alton at a Harry's Farmers Market in Roswell, GA (which very recently closed its doors) and he was very polite and talkative.

  7. Aidan says:

    I love Cutthroat Kitchen. It is one of my favorite shows. I agree that it isn't very instructive in cooking but it teaches lessons elsewhere, like strategy, don't worry about revenge too much, and financial management! I also think that it is good because it is different from other shows. On Cutthroat Kitchen half the game is creativity, which is important anywhere. On other shows it is mainly about skill.

  8. clay says:

    Make Alton cook on cutthroat kitchen.

  9. Katie says:

    I'm surprised at everyone's comments. I can't get enough Cutthroat Kitchen. It's my absolute favorite cooking show ever. I also love Alton completely.

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