All Posts By Sara Levine

Sara Levine is a Senior Online Editor at FoodNetwork.com and a culinary-school-trained home cook. Several years ago she quit her magazine job to go to Le Cordon Bleu, which led to a stint in Food Network Kitchen. Although cooking professionally wasn’t her thing, she loves frequenting restaurants and putting her own amateur culinary skills to work in her tiny kitchen.

Team Alton Cracks the Top Three: Your Week Two Picks Revealed

by , May 29th, 2012

Our week two Fan Vote tally is in, and Team Giada’s Martita Jara and Ippy Aiona continue to duke it out for first place. Martita regained her preseason lead this week with 24% of your votes, while Ippy stayed strong at 21%. But this week, Team...

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Caption It: Goofing Around

by , May 25th, 2012

This Sunday’s new episode of Star is an intense one. Just when they’re getting comfy in their teams, the finalists must compete against their own teammates in Chopped-style dessert battles. When the wacky mystery baskets are revealed, th...

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Star Poll: Pick Your Dish

by , May 24th, 2012

For the bus tour challenge, Team Giada ended up right in their mentor’s comfort zone: Arthur Avenue, the Bronx’s answer to Little Italy. Maybe this added a little pressure — as Team Giada, they couldn’t mess up Italian food! They...

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Restaurant Revisited: University Grill

by in Shows, May 23rd, 2012

University Grill

At the University Grill in Burlington, N.C., Robert Irvine faced three co-owners who refused to get along. Siblings Eleni, George and Manny opened the restaurant five years ago to help provide for their retired parents, but they were facing failure when Restaurant: Impossible came along to help. We checked in with the siblings after their restaurant’s makeover to see how business is going.

A few months after Robert and his Restaurant: Impossible team arrived on the scene, sales at the University Grill are up 15 percent. “Everyone loves the new decor,” says Eleni.

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Team Bobby’s First Farewell

by , May 22nd, 2012

Team Bobby was riding high after taking home the first win of the season, only to come crashing back to reality in Episode Two. On their food tour of Harlem, caterer and fitness guru Kara Sigle hoped a strong presentation would distract from her lifeless chicken and waffles. Unfortunately, she stumbled, lost focus and completely forgot to tell the crowd — and the judges — about her dish at all. She wasn’t surprised to end up in the Producers’ Challenge, going head-to-head against Judson to create the ultimate potato dish and make it memorable.

When Bob and Susie decided that Team Alton’s Judson was the better gamble to keep around another week, he was the one who shed tears. Kara left the competition with her head held high and still hopes to see Team Bobby come out on top. “They become your family immediately,” she said of her team. “I think they’re going to go all the way. That’s the final four right there.”

Hear more from Bobby, Susie and Kara in her exclusive exit interview. Do you think she deserved to go home so soon?

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Caption It: Stay Out of Trouble

by , May 18th, 2012

Oh, Josh. In Episode One, this rock star/sushi chef was Team Giada’s problem child. First, he somersaulted onto the stage to get Bob and Susie’s attention — and it worked, but not in a good way. Then he ended up in the bottom two. With...

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Poll: Who Should Go Home on Sunday?

by , May 17th, 2012

Fourteen finalists remain in contention to become the next Food Network Star. This Sunday night, when the three teams board buses to lead New York food tours, which two will end up on the bottom? Who will get a second chance after the Producers̵...

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Restaurant Revisited: Barolo

by in Shows, May 16th, 2012

In Aptos, Calif., Robert and the Restaurant: Impossible team faced the daunting task of turning things around at Ristorante Barolo. Owners Giovanni Guerisoli and Cristina Locke struggled with the changing economy as well as family health problems, and could barely keep their 10-year-old business afloat. We checked in with the couple to see how things were going after Restaurant: Impossible.

Three months later, sales at Ristorante Barolo have increased by 37%. “The new decor and also all the publicity because of the show have brought new customers,” says Cristina. “People watch and really like Restaurant: Impossible.” Read more

Team Alton: Down to Four

by , May 15th, 2012

Team Alton was the first to lose a member with the departure of Cristie Schoen in Sunday’s premiere. Cristie, a movie-set caterer, came off as angry when she delivered her pitch for healthy eating (and a bland black-eyed pea and cabbage soup) in the Restaurant: Impossible challenge. She tried to redeem herself in the Producers’ Challenge, but Bob and Susie ultimately felt that Josh had more staying power.

“I got confused and you lost me at the end. I don’t see the joy and the excitement that will excite an entire nation to eat healthy,” Bob Tuschman told Cristie. She handled her early exit gracefully, but with regrets about her performance: “I’m really disappointed that I did not make it close to the top because I do have such an important message to share. I wasn’t able to communicate that message out.”

Hear more from Alton, Bob and Cristie in her exclusive exit interview. Do you think she deserved to be the first to go?

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Your Pre-Season Picks, Revealed

by , May 14th, 2012

Martita Jara

The Pre-Season Fan Vote tally is in! Before viewing last night’s premiere, 20% of you cast your votes for Team Giada’s Martita Jara, a spunky interior designer who grew up in the restaurant business and loves to cook with her family’s Mexi...

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