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Restaurant Revisited: It’s All Greek to Me at Angelo’s

by in Shows, June 23rd, 2013

Angelo's on Restaurant: Impossible In Woodstock, Ill., two cousins — Angelo Paloumbis and Angelo Mourelatos — have come together to run Angelo’s, their Greek-style restaurant founded by their fathers. Although this family business is now decades old, not much has changed since it opened 40 years ago; the unexciting menu, standard diner decor and family tension remain, and all are contributing to the business’ failure. Robert Irvine and his Restaurant: Impossible team had just two days and a $10,000 budget to offer Angelo and Angelo a new outlook on their professional relationship, plus give their eatery an updated design and the tools to create fresh, flavorful food. FN Dish checked in with Angelo Paloumbis a few months after the transformation of Angelo’s to find out how the business is doing today. “Business is up 20 percent and is holding steady,” Angelo tells us, adding that the restaurant is now making at least a 10-percent profit. “We’re paying down debt with it,” he explains.

In terms of the decor, Angelo’s has taken advantage of the open floor plan Robert’s team created, even hosting large private parties in the redesigned space. Angelo adds that “the younger crowd loves” the updated style, and many of the servers have adapted well to their new station. The menu at Angelo’s is a mix of items from the original menu and the offerings Robert created. “We kept some things (sandwiches, salads, half the entrees, the appetizers) [and] added some of our prior entrees that people were requesting,” Angelo says. “The fried chicken, the roast turkey, the new hamburgers, the Greek lamb burger” are some of the most popular dishes. Many guests have been wowed with the fare at Angelo’s, and they’re especially pleased that they can pay with credit cards for the first time.

More From Restaurant Revisited:

Pier West Restaurant (June 16)
Pinehurst Country Lodge (June 9)
Bryan’s Smokehouse (May 26)
Wagon Wheel Family Restaurant (May 19)
Mom & Dad’s Italian Restaurant (May 12)
Smitty’s Restaurant (April 28)
Old World Italian Restaurant (April 21)
Joe Willy’s Seafood House (April 14)
Sweet Tea’s Restaurant & Catering (March 24)
Soup to Nuts Diner (March 17)
Caseyville Cafe (March 13)
Maniaci’s Italian Restaurant (March 10)
Dinner Bell Restaurant (February 27)
Nanny Goat’s Cafe & Feed Bin (February 20)
Sapori D’Italia (January 23)
Windseeker Restaurant (January 16)
Whiskey Creek Steakhouse (January 2)

VOTE: Star vs. Chopped Summer Side Showdown

by in Recipes, Shows, June 23rd, 2013

Star vs. Chopped Summer Side ShowdownWe challenged two prestigious groups — Chopped judges and Food Network Star winners — to a summer recipe showdown. All season long, we’ll present head-to-head matchups of mouthwatering summer recipes from each team — from refreshing cocktails to fresh farmers’-market salads to the juiciest backyard burgers. By voting each week here on FN Dish or on our Fan Feed, you’ll determine the winning recipes.

At the end of the summer, the team that tallies up the most wins will celebrate with an all-star Labor Day party menu. Who will prevail as Summer Showdown champion — Star or Chopped?

This week, Chopped judge and Iron Chef Geoffrey Zakarian faces off against Star Season 5 winner Melissa d’Arabian in a battle of classic summer sides: coleslaw vs. potato salad. Whose will show up on your picnic table? Cast your votes below!

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What to Watch: Mexican Food with a Southern Twist, Bobby’s Barbecue, and Stars on the Silver Screen

by in Shows, June 21st, 2013

What to WatchThis weekend, Food Network’s new episodes cover a little bit of everything, including Mexican night, movie night, packed lunches to go, barbecuing, muffins, cupcakes and more.

Start your Saturday morning with recipe ideas for a packed lunch to go, as Ree prepares sandwiches and salads for a group meeting. Then Trisha gets to cooking a Latin-style menu with her workout instructors. Later, Giada shares her favorite muffin recipe with various mix-in ideas.

On Sunday morning, Jamie Deen is preparing dishes for taco night with a Southern twist. Then Guy is cooking a special lobster dish. On Sandwich King, Jeff is remaking the sloppy joe to be healthier for his son Lorenzo. And Bobby is barbecuing bison short ribs and grilling fish tacos.

Then in the evening, come back for some competition, starting with a toy-themed episode of Cupcake Wars. Then it’s off to the movies on Food Network Star, where teams of the remaining finalists must cook and create movie trailers. And finally, on Restaurant: Impossible, Robert must help revitalize a Greek diner.

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Did You Miss the Meat? — Chopped After Hours

by in Shows, June 18th, 2013

In most Chopped baskets, it’s the meaty protein or shellfish that trips up competitors, what with these ingredients that tend to be difficult to break down, clean, and cook properly and fully in a hurry. But in tonight’s brand-new episode of Chopped, the contestants found themselves with vegetarian baskets, which meant that when it came time for an After Hours competition, judges Alex Guarnaschelli, Amanda Freitag and Marc Murphy were challenged to create entrees using golden beets, wheatgrass, tempeh and etrog citron.

While Alex and Marc admitted to being unfamiliar with cooking and eating these kinds of ingredients, Amanda told them, “I eat this stuff,” and she later admitted to being “a closet vegetarian.” For all three judges, the challenge was offering dishes that were both bold and hefty enough to be filling. Amanda stuck to a classic preparation of tempeh by featuring it in a spiced stew with curry, while Alex treated the tempeh like rice, turning it into a risotto-style plate with mushrooms and citrus. Marc, however, known for his fondness of meat-and-potatoes classics, made a tempeh-based burger that was anything but vegetarian, thanks to beef broth and bacon. After tasting each of their offerings, guest host Aarón told them: “I’m not crying for meat right now. You made satisfying meals that really sort of constituted a complete dish.”

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Get to Know Charles Stiles, the Host of Mystery Diners

by in Shows, June 18th, 2013

Charles StilesOn Food Network’s Mystery Diners, Charles Stiles and his team of mystery diners go behind the scenes with hidden cameras to find out what restaurant employees are up to when the boss is not around. What they discover just goes to show how bad customer service can get when employees don’t put the success of the business first. What you might not know is that Charles’ company has been servicing businesses in need of help for the past 18 years. Business Evaluation Services uses undercover mystery shoppers and diners to get to the root of an establishment’s problems.

FN Dish recently chatted with Charles to find out more about his company and what it does for restaurants and retail shops around the nation. He talked about how his company came to be, how people can become mystery shoppers and how to prevent the failure of a business. Read the Q&A with Charles and watch the new season of Mystery Diners on Fridays at 10pm/9c.

Get to know Charles Stiles in his Q&A

Short Rib Burgers, Indian Favorites and Chicken Pie on Triple D Tonight

by in Shows, June 17th, 2013

Guy Fieri on Diners, Drive-Ins and DivesTonight on the all-new episode of Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives (10pm/9c), Guy’s taking it across the country for some mean meat dishes. Missed last week’s episode? Stay tuned for the marathon that will leave you hungry for a road trip.

This week Guy throws it back in Denver with an old-school short rib burger and a tart apple strudel pastry with a savory twist. Guy ventures to the Arizona sunshine to find a Pakistani spot dishing out authentic goat. The festival of flavors continues with the Tempe, Ariz., restaurant’s Tandoori chicken roasted with insane spices. Next, Guy will fall for the flavors in the city of brotherly love. One local Philadelphia joint is crankin’ out chicken pie without the pot and grillin’ up Triple D-worthy fresh octopus.

Join Guy on his coast-to-coast journey starting at 6pm/5c — follow along and bookmark the restaurants as he goes, then try your hand at the recipes.

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Restaurant Revisited: Sink or Swim at Pier West Restaurant

by in Shows, June 16th, 2013

Robert Irvine on Restaurant: ImpossibleDespite the picturesque view from its waterfront location, Pier West Restaurant in Twin Lakes, Wis., couldn’t escape serious issues indoors, among them considerable debt and drab decor. With just $10,000 and two days to work, Robert Irvine and his Restaurant: Impossible team relaunched owner Chip Walmsley’s business with a new menu and an updated design, plus gave Chip the support he needed to manage the restaurant and the foundation to mend his relationship with his family. FN Dish checked in with Chip a few months after the renovation to find out how the eatery is doing today.

“Business has been great since the filming [of the show]. We have definitely seen about a 25-percent increase in food sales,” Chip tells us. “We are taking things one week at a time … [and] following the standards Robert set up for us.”

Chip says “not one single customer misses the old look” of Pier West, and in terms of the new space’s features, his favorites are “the lighting and the floor.”

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The Challenge of Prepared Products — Chopped After Hours

by in Shows, June 16th, 2013


In the last After Hours episode, Chopped judges tried their hands at ingredients that collectively proved to be some of the most common ever featured on the show, and their experience with them was a challenge in and of itself. Similarly, on tonight’s all-new battle, judges Alex Guarnaschelli, Aarón Sánchez and Marcus Samuelsson faced a basket with one particularly demanding ingredient: lobster bisque. In the same way that the last group of judges had to transform the familiar, Alex, Aarón and Marcus had to redefine something that was already a finished dish.

“I think that’s the hardest [ingredient] right there,” guest judge Amanda Freitag said of the bisque, “’cause someone made it already. And maybe they made it too creamy, too thick.” Her peers understood what she meant by that, and they each went to great lengths to transform the bisque into something else, instead of simply warming it and serving it as-is. Aarón and Alex treated the bisque as the base of their sauces, guajillo and marinara, respectively, while Marcus used the bisque as the building block of another bisque. He added yogurt and white wine to the basket ingredient in an effort to increase its “sourness,” and cooked it with squid, potatoes and daikon radish. What resulted was a “completely complex” offering, according to Aarón .

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VOTE: Star vs. Chopped Summer Salad Showdown

by in Recipes, Shows, June 16th, 2013

Summer Salad ShowdownWe challenged two prestigious groups — Chopped judges and Food Network Star winners — to a summer recipe showdown. All season long, we’ll present head-to-head matchups of mouthwatering summer recipes from each team — from refreshing cocktails to fresh farmers’-market salads to the juiciest backyard burgers. By voting each week here on FN Dish or on our Fan Feed, you’ll determine the winning recipes.

At the end of the summer, the team that tallies up the most wins will celebrate with an all-star Labor Day party menu. Who will prevail as Summer Showdown champion — Star or Chopped?

This week, Season-6 Star winner Aarti Sequeira and Chopped judge Aarón Sánchez spice up summer’s best produce in a pair of rival salads. Aarti puts an Indian spin on grilled corn, while Aarón takes fresh tomatoes and infuses them with Mexican flavors. Whose will be a must on your summer table? Cast your votes below!

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What to Watch: A Special Chopped/Star Crossover and Father’s Day in the Kitchen

by in Shows, June 14th, 2013

ChoppedThis Father’s Day weekend, Food Network has new episodes geared toward the guys. First, Paula is cooking “dad food” with her son Jamie. Then Ree is cooking breakfast and lunch for her cowboys. Then Trisha is making “manly” food for her husband, Garth, and his two buddies. Afterward, Giada is making a special dinner for her husband, Todd. Then on Sunday, Guy is in the kitchen with his two sons, nephew and dad. And Jeff is taking a stroll down memory lane with his dad.

Right after, watch the season premiere of Bobby Flay’s Barbecue Addiction. Bobby is preparing a Mexican feast with bold flavors. And on Sunday evening, it’s a special night of Chopped (also, don’t forget to watch the After Hours episode online right after the show). On Food Network Star, the 10 remaining contestants get put through a Chopped challenge judged by Alex Guarnaschelli. And last, it’s Robert Irvine to the rescue on a new episode of Restaurant: Impossible.

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