Sandwich King

by in Food Network Star, August 15, 2011

Sandwich King Jeff Mauro

We have a winner! Jeff Mauro is Food Network's Star. Congratulations, Jeff — you've earned every bit of your success.

Fans, thank you so much for watching this season and for your participation here at the Star Blog. Good, bad and indifferent — you have let us know exactly what you're thinking. The team at Food Network has enjoyed hearing from all of you.

Be sure to join Jeff for a live chat on Food Network's Facebook wall Wednesday at 1:15pm/12:15c. And, of course, watch the series premiere of Jeff's new show, Sandwich King, Sunday at 11:30am/10:30c.

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Comments (749)

  1. Dianna Peterson says:

    While I think Jeff has a great personality, I would not watch a show on the Food channel that features sandwiches. I think Vic would have had a show that many of us could have learned something from.

    • back2kitchentable says:

      I have to agree here. Oh, sure, I'll watch his show starting out from interest. He's a good personality and such. But it just doesn't seem to be a durable show. How long will it last? How many seasons of "let's put something between two slices of bread" can you do?

      Looks like we're about to find out. Prove me wrong? It could happen.

      Congratulations to Jeff!

      • Viewer from Michigan says:

        I don't agree! I think that too few people think about recipes for sandwiches, and think they are simple compositions. They aren't. I know that the sandwiches for which I have actual recipes always receive notice and praise--and the heightening of a sandwich to a legitimate cooking category is a great idea. Susie (from FNS) remarked that from a marketig standpoint, this show is a dream, and I think she's right; Jeff will have plenty of opportunities to tie in visits to great sandwich restaurants, food trucks, etc., if his format eventually allows that.

        Unlike the other contestants, Jeff is truly comfortable in front of the camera and that makes him comfortable to watch. He really won me over,as much as I loved watching Vic, Mary Beth, and Susie throughout the competition.

        • Guest10 says:

          Spot on, Viewer...! Sandwiches offer limitless possibilities, since they can be constructed from any ingredients. They are not limited to whatever you can shove between slices of bread. The promo last night already showed Jeff taking the viewers to markets, etc. I'm sure Susie's show would have been fine, too, though I thought FN wanted to pigeon-hole her a bit too much. That's on the network, rather than on Susie. I have a feeling Susie and Mary Beth will eventually end up with their own shows. Congrats to Jeff and his family!

        • Dishy says:

          I met Jeff, Susie, and Mary Beth in person. Vic was conspicuously absent. Susie by far had the strongest personality and made me want to like her even more. Mary Beth seemed a bit strained and forced while meeting a stranger. As if she wasn't that comfortable. Jeff was ok, but he certainly didn't make an impression on me. I wanted Susie to win. Not only because of her personality: she cooks great Mexican food. And I would love to learn her recipes from her family. And I'm sorry, but are you really kidding me? Sandwich recipes? Makes me cringe. Stuff between two pieces of bread. Yikes!! Well, enjoy, cause i am not going to watch the show.

      • Jahosacat says:

        Agree. Sandwich king is good for a mini series, not a long term series.

      • Dishy says:

        I agree with you. How many shows can we watch about putting stuff between two slabs of bread? I mean, Jeff makes sandwiches for breakfast, lunch and dinner. ENOUGH ALREADY!! Please make some real food and not just make food to pack in your kids' lunch boxes.

      • Katrinka says:

        I think Susie Fogelson is out of touch. I am happy for Jeff, but I won't be watching his show. His voice is so annoying, and his humor is humorless. I was disappointed with the contestants chosen for this year. There wasn't anyone who wowed me, anyone from whom I thought I might learn something. While there are a lot of sandwich options, even if you use the term loosely, I don't see a show devoted to only sandwiches sustained for very long.

    • Anne says:

      Couldn't agree with you more, Dianna! What are we going to learn? With Susie we had a chance of learning about Mexican cuisine from an authentic source. Don't we all know how to make a sandwich? Very disappointing. Hope to see Susie and MaryBeth on the Cooking Channel!

      • JanS. says:

        While I agree that I wasn't interested in watching Susie's show, what's with your "illegal Susie" crack? That is totally uncalled for. She seems like a real sweetheart and I wish her lots of success. My grandparents came here from Germany to make a better life for their children and I'm glad they did. Susie's parents wanted the same thing -- what's wrong with that?

        • Guest10 says:

          Well said, JanS. I'm so tired of all the bigoted comments on the Internet. All this xenophobia, in a place where immigrants are the norm rather than the exception, could choke an elephant. My great-grandparents traveled here from the UK. They didn't find what they were looking for, so they never became American citizens; however, my grandfather and the succeeding generations all were citizens who made names for themselves. Every immigrant has a chance to make a positive impact.

        • Dishy says:

          Jan, you posted 2 days ago, so you will probably not read this. I just want to say that I am so sick of people saying that there is already a "Mexican" food show, so why let Susie have a show. Yet how many caucasians have shows on FN now? And how many of them feature sandwiches? How many of them feature Italian food?

      • Sue says:

        I totally agree! Susie would have been a much better choice!

      • Tina says:

        But a show about Mexican food would not be new. How about Ingrid Hoffman with "Simply Delisioso" or Marcela Valladolid with her "Mexican Made Easy"?

        I'm very happy with Jeff's win. The snarky remarks about the limitations of sandwiches suggests that some of the posters may have not seen all the FNS shows with Jeff. Most of his recipes required a whole lot more than opening up the fridge and slapping some meat/mayo between two slices of bread.

      • Dishy says:

        Please go to Facebook. We have a "we wanted Susie to win" page. Please join.

      • Katrinka says:

        Ugh! When the judges forced Susie to change her point of view and tell her family stories ad nauseum, I lost interest in her. If I want to watch an excellent chef who cooks Mexican, I'll watch Rick Bayless. Doubt we'll see him anywhere near FN.

    • lax says:

      Oddly, Penny of all people made the most accurate comment about Jeff's show. His sandwich showcases ingredients that can stand on their own, outside of a sandwich. That eggplant could have been paired with something else, so too the meat from his demo show.

      • beachinfrizzy says:

        Well...yeah...I"d think most people would consider braciole as standing on its own rather than in a sandwich...that's kind of the point, to switch it up and make it INTO a sandwich, right? No points for Penny there, fact it struck me as the kind of thing someone would say if his or her mind was wandering and all of a sudden got called on to comment. OTOH, I found Penny at least tolerable to watch last night whereas Chris skeeved me. I could hardly stand to look at him much less listen to his blather.

        • Guest10 says:

          Exactly! Chris made a complete fool of himself last night. He acted so smug, when he had absolutely nothing to feel smug about. His claims of running a kitchen, when he is a mere sous chef, smacked of hypocrisy. Justin B. already runs his own business, so he has more legitimacy than Chris, who still sounded like the overgrown frat brat we thought he was.

          • Tina says:

            Oh, I so agree. I didn't think his frat boy persona could get any worse than when he was still a contestant. Boy was I wrong.

      • l6blue says:

        Penny showed, once again, that she hates women. She made some useless negative comment about Susie's pilot (not engaging) without any constructive specifics. Then she made an equally useless positive comment about Jeff. The smirk on her face said it all. I think the show came down to the right final two. I was slightly pulling for Susie, but I'll be happy to watch Jeff. I just wish they hadn't brought back that little bit of no class for the final episode.

    • mjw77 says:

      I personally cant WAIT to watch his show. I think he is funny, intelligent and makes me want to watch and not everything he makes has to be a "sandwich" My husband and teen kids loves this guy and so do I and I cant wait to watch his show. Hope it gets moved to a better time slot and day... Sunday mornings is the kiss of death...

      • Lisa says:

        I agree I can't wait for his show. I love to watch Food Network and I think sandwiches are a wonderful idea. It is a fresh new idea, and offer working Mom's an easy option for dinner that the kids will like to eat!!

      • Katrinka says:

        I must have been watching a different Jeff.

    • eakallighan says:

      I think FN really missed the mark on this show. I am glad for Jeff that he won, but he is too much " schtick" in his delivery, he doesn't seem genuine and I can't watch him. A sandwich show is very limiting and many people are working on cutting out carbs etc.His sandwiches while they may taste good, are not easy for the average day to day cook to make and they take too much time. In my opinion, he does not inspire confidence either. Just my opinion, but I will not watch him and I'm going to move on from FN too- becomng too boring and this was a bad choice.

      • Guest10 says:

        While I agree about FN's losing its edge, I find your objections to Jeff's show rather absurd. How do you how his sandwiches really taste, how long they take to construct, etc.? Much of what he did could be served as a full meal, say on a weekend, then used for sandwiches, with most of the ingredients prepped ahead to save time. Sandwiches have been regaining their popularity, since they do not need to be limited to high-carb breads.

    • sanabil says:

      I agree that Jeff is very personable but I too would not watch his show. I would turn in to watch Vic or Susie. I enjoyed them on the show this season.

    • John Vanderslice says:

      I think Jeff's show will probably be fine, but I'm surprised they didn't go for Susie. They'd talked about her for weeks as if she was the Next Food Star in waiting. And I would have been much more likely to follow her show. Plus there isn't a real Mexican cooking star yet on the network. It looked to me like she filled a glaring need, and in an exceptional way. The story of her family would have made her success even more meaningful. I hope she gets a show on Cooking Channel.

      • JamesinAlaska says:

        I think we should have specialty-shows for:
        1. Mexican
        2. Italian...and...
        3. Chinese (this is lacking and needs to be filled. Whatever happened to MING and his famous "good-to-go?")
        Those, are "the Big 3". Obviously, we cant have 35 shows from 35 countries. But I agree---they talked very positively about Susie--and she was outperforming Jeff with more consistently good food--and her smile makes almost makes ME feel enthusiasm with her. They shoulda picked her to win.
        2 comments about sandwiches:
        1. If "anything" can be a sandwich, then wow, what an easy "gravy" job Jeff has. Just throw anything together, put it between 2 slices of bread or in a wrap, call it a sandwich, and who-lah! No creativity involved. Anything "works". How easy. Any of us could do it. So why do we need him?...and...
        2. I may watch the 1st 2 or 3 shows just-to-see....but I strongly suspect th whole thing will Fizzle-out after that. I never watch aarti's show, either. I DO Like: Guy at home, Melissa, Tyler, the Neely's, and Ina Garten.

      • Katrinka says:

        Her stories about her family became old and boring quickly. I don't want to hear about the hosts' stories. I want to learn about the food. The only stories I want to hear are how the dishes got their names or any tidbits of history associated with them. The Cooking Channel has a higher calibre of cooking shows (except for the Bobby Flay, Giada and Rachael Ray shows we can't get away from). Susie's show would pull it down.

    • Barbara says:

      I agree with Dianna. Jeff is outgoing and fun, but Susie has such heart. And, in all fairness, I wouldn't watch Jeff's show, but I would have watched Susie's.

    • Alex says:

      I love the show and the network. I try to accept the choices they powers that be make. I have to agree with DP. I would never watch a cooking show telling me how to make a sandwich. I found it hard to believe that a guy who never showed any growth on the show won. Susie on the other hand grew. She has something I would love to see. How the sandwich king could still be around is beyond me and to win. He was not true to his pov. It is a sad day and a show that I will never watch. 13 kids in my family and we all agree not something we will watch. I am looking to cook.

      • elaine says:

        idiot... sandwiches are americana.... susie was boring and who wants another spice show!!!

        • Christy says:

          diversity is a good thing, helloo this is America. what other country in the world can you go to and have so many cultures blended in and working together as a whole? none. that is what makes America. Sad to say that you think sandwiches represents this amazing country. We are much more than that.

    • says:

      ugh... you drone

    • guest says:

      I am glad to see a show that has the focus of a sandwich. There are already many "mexican" cooking shows. I am glad to see someone with great personality get the show of his dreams. I will definately watch his show. Congratulations, Jeff, on a job well done, and the best of luck to you.

    • Wally says:

      I feel Jeff is going to be great. A sandwich show is something lacking on foodnetwork and our family WILL watch his show every Sunday morning. Good Luck to you Jeff, your great.

    • Deb says:

      I completely agree! I watch food network everyday and I feel Vic would have been the next Guy! I am very dissapointed in the panels decision and I dont feel they were thinking in the bigger picture.

    • tammy says:

      I will totally watch Jeff's show....he's fun to watch. I became nauseated at the Susie schtick on coming to america. Who DIDN't have family that came to America? Come to So Cal and AZ and TX for that matter, and see how many mexicans there are here. it's not a novel comcept. And all that schtick on her daddy - why didn't she have the POV of Daddy's girl to go with Vic's Mammas boy? Man, she got on my last nerve. But regardless of all that - I thought the top 3 were all great relative to last 2 year's winners.

      Soo, bring on the sam'iches Jeff!!!

    • Donna says:

      I agree Jeff would be fun to watch if I happened onto his show. Susie I would have made an effort to watch on a regular basis. She reminds me a lot of Rachael Ray, who I catch quite frequently. Maybe viewer input should be considered.

    • Hallie Freedman says:

      I agree!! especially since I typically eat Paleo...I would have to hold the bread for each of those sandwiches - like Jeff but was rooting for susie or vic!!!!

  2. Ray says:

    Jeff does have personality and he seems fun, but I don't think I'll watch his show. I know how to make a sandwich, taco, wrap, etc. Susie's smile is electrifying and I thought she should have won, but maybe I'll see her on Cooking Channel. After all, I always watch Kelsey Nixon.

    • Bella says:

      Kelsey's show is GREAT, isn't it? She provides so much info, insight and has some great recipes, not to mention how at ease she is.

      • Ray says:

        I was pulling for her when she was competing. She seems as sweet and genuine as Sunny Anderson and I've actually used some of her recipes.

      • Guest10 says:

        I can't even watch Kelsey's show, and I like her. The concept is just way too simplistic. I already create much better versions of those basic dishes. I also can't stand the way FN restyled her into some mirror image of Sunny Anderson (whom I also like), with matching bad haircuts, and those varnished, bitten nails are a real turnoff. I always imagine the varnish flaking into the food. Yuck! Kelsey's a personable, attractive young woman; I'd love to see her reclaim her original image and start cooking some recipes for more sophisticated cooks, as well.

    • JamesinAlaska says:

      I wanted Susie to win. She was outperforming Jeff more consistently with her great food--and her smile charges the whole atmosphere.
      But I think I can see why she lost. Food Network already has Mexican food. And a Sandwich show is something "new" that isnt already being done. (I STILL cant see how anyone really needs to be taught how to make a sandwich.)
      While I'm at it--as far as "something new" goes----Hey, FoodNetwotk, how about a new show on how to make fabulous GRAVIES & SAUCES. (I'm serious).
      This is not being done, either. Its something new. No one is teaching us this already. And MANY meals can be "enriched tremendously" by a delicious gravy. Really! It would be a "new Niche."

      • Guest10 says:

        I'm not sure whether they could sustain an entire show about gravies and sauces. Many of the chefs already add gravies and sauces to their recipes.

        • Katrinka says:

          Don't know about that. I recently saw a cookbook titled, 300 Sauces. If the host did one a week...

      • Dishy says:

        James, I have a couple things to say in response to your comment. First of all, yes, I believe Susie should have won. Her food was much better than Jeff's and of a higher caliper. Second, it makes me so angry when I hear that Susie didn't win because "FN already has a Mexican food show." Let me ask you this: how many Caucasian chefs are there on FN now; and how many of them prepare sandwiches from time to time? And how many FN stars prepare Italian food? Please, Giada is not the only one. So why can't there be TWO female mexican chefs on FN? And James, if you are still reading this, we have a page on Facebook about wanting Susie to win. And let me say this: I met Susie and Jeff in person, and Susie was an angel!! She was so outgoing and friendly, even though she knew at the time that she did not win the competition. I just love her, and hope she gets her own show.
        And are you kidding me about a show on gravies and sauces? OMG, I think I am good at this. If there were such a show, maybe I would enter. I love gravy and sauce on EVERYTHING!!!

      • scott says:

        i agree completely.Who wants to watch a sandwitch sho? who cares.I don't rea;lly like the other Mexican cook I think the food network droped the ball on this one

    • Andrea says:

      I also enjoy Kelsey, Ray. She has some really basic but with a twist ideas. I enjoy her more than Melissa.

    • Heidemarie says:

      I totally agree, I could not believe my ears when they announced that Jeff won. Wrong decision! Susie has presence and I would have watched her show. Jeff and sandwiches NO THANK YOU!!! He is so artificial!

      • Katrinka says:

        then he should fit in well on FN. Artificial...Giada, Paula Deen, Rachael Ray, Guy Ferry...Bobby Flay is too dumb to be artificial.

    • Dishy says:

      Ray, in case you are interested, we have a page on Facebook for Susie fans. If you can't find it, give me a hollah.

  3. Lesley says:

    Jeff will be great, as long as his sandwich recipes are 3 hours long....I can make a full meal in that amount of time! But, I'm still hoping Whitney, Marybeth and Vic get a show sometime.

  4. David says:

    Although I was rooting for Susie, I want to congratulate Jeff. They both deserve a show. While it might not of been the best season, I still enjoyed it. Good luck to all of the contestants.

  5. Lisa Ryan says:

    I am thrilled that Jeff won! He has such charisma & personality. As Bob has said time and time again, they can teach them to become better cooks but you cannot teach someone personality. I think it's a great concept for a Food Network show. Too many people get food to-go this will allow a home cook to think outside of the box. To see Jeff's family at the end was so wonderful. CONGRATS to Jeff. I think Susie & Vic will both be seen on the Food network in some capicty as well.

    • LeeGoron says:

      I too was glad to see Jeff win, in this hurry up world i think many mothers will enjoy having more than just a tuna fish sandwich to give their kids in a hurry between after school events. Jeff has a great personality that will see him go far. Susie was nice too but please tell me who wants to cook with LARD aren't we all too fat as a society. so glad Mary Beth did not make the finals, could not stand looking at her one more time!!

      • Marsha says:

        Jeff's sandwiches were not diet food, as I recall.

      • Megan565 says:

        So - are you a mother that serves tuna fish to her kid?? "between after school events" Or do you really not know what you're talking about? I've never served a sandwich to my kids beyond 4th grade. And I'm sure if I did - they would rave about the "fried eggplant". Please - stick to your what you know.....

      • Dishy says:

        So Susie prepared ONE dish that was slow cooked in lard. You don't EAT the lard--unless you like eating hot, melted lard--you just eat the meat that was cooked in it. Have you ever eaten anything sauteed in butter? Or oil? Have you ever eaten French fries? Or sweet potato fries? Or maybe you just eat salads without dressing. Poor thing.

    • Colette says:

      I agree w/ Lisa.....and why does it always have to be one star, one show? I think this season shows that FN could do something a show w/ two or more stars....more energy, creativity, a new twist! AND....AND HOW ABOUT A JUNIOR FN STAR.......TO INSPIRE KIDS ON SATURDAY MORNINGS TO LEARN HOW TO COOK INSTEAD OF WATCHING CARTOONS OR TEEN COMEDY! Many kids cook....and a junior competition would inspire others to learn......and help their parents in the kitchen.

      • Lisa says:

        A Junior FN Star is an awesome idea!!! I don't have little kids anymore but I think I would still tune in to see the show. Perhaps they could have childstar guests on to help cook...Great Idea Colette.

      • Dishy says:

        What are you inferring? Do you want Guy's son Hunter to have his own show on Saturday mornings?

    • Dishy says:

      Please tell me that you are kidding when you say that Jeff has been cooking "outside the box." He has been and will be creating SANDWICHES for God's sake. As for charisma and personality, Susie has it in spades. I might eat one sandwich per month. So I won't be watching Jeff's show. So sorry Jeff. Seems that you cater to some mid-American group that I am not part of. I prefer real food. And I LOVE spicy food and creating new things, so would have loved to watched a show by Susie. Hopefully she will be given a chance too.

    • Katrinka says:

      Jeff has no charisma nor personality. But he was the lesser of two evils. I didn't like either him or Susie. FN needs to get real chefs on the network, instead of these fake personalities.

  6. wehaveawinner! says:

    Congratulations, Jeff! What a close competition -- I think both of the finalists deserve a show, and hopefully this experience will have a positive effect on most the other contestants' future ventures (with one obvious exception). I wonder if Orchid will get the online show, since fan vote favorite Jeff is the FNS winner? And if the Food Network team really is listening, let's hope next season is all about the food and not about the drama -- we shall see!

    • whiskygirl54 says:

      Are you kidding me? No one can honestly say, "OMG I'm soooo surprised!". Jeff was the pre-chosen winner from day one. All the weeks of FN Star were marketing and advertisting. He's ok, but I'm not sure his POV will last till the water gets hot. I'm sure he's thrilled and so he should be. It's a big deal
      to be employed by the FN. The Reunion show was another joke. Seemed more like an attempt to authenticate the scripted reality. It's no different than any other "reality" show. I wonder just how much these contestants get paid to spend that many weeks away from their real jobs and families? Hmmm good question.....

  7. Lorik says:

    So many people have been complaining about a show about sandwiches. They seem to think that a sandwich as a meal concept is lame...if it is so lame, why are we a nation of fast food eating people? How many drive through hamburgers and chicken sandwiches are consumed for dinner each night? LOL

    On another note, we finally got the answer as to why so few recipes were given out this year and why the judges weren't blogging...they were saving it all for their insider book that they want to sell us. No that the season is over my five minute attention span has moved on to something else.

    • back2kitchentable says:

      Hello Lorik! It seems to me you've answered your own question in your question. Why are we a nation of fast food eating people? That's definitely lame in my book!

      I don't mind a few shows on sandwiches, but eventually the content of the series will have to shift to the preparation of the contents in the sandwich... and that is where the show lies.

    • anotherPaul says:

      "...if it is so lame, why are we a nation of fast food eating people? How many drive through hamburgers and chicken sandwiches are consumed for dinner each night?"+

      That's exactly why it's so lame. While a good portion of the country may gorge themselves on fast food (I can't even call it food) I never eat fast food. I rarely eat sandwiches. I never eat drive through hamburgers. I'm a cook. I want to watch shows that help me become a better cook, not one that cooks more like a fast food joint.

      I like Jeff. I think he has real star quality, maybe more than any of the other contestants. But why do they have to pigeon hole them into such narrow categories, like sandwiches? Same with Melissa. She has real talent in the kitchen yet she's forced to make these lesser meals because she has to keep it under $10. Or that woman that has to keep it under 5 ingredients. It's just stupid. They never needed to limit Julia Child, or Graham Kerr, or Sarah Moulten, or any of the other chefs that had useful, helpful shows. Limits=gimmicks. As an adult, I don't need lame gimmicks to get me to watch a show.

      A sandwich show is lame. Think of all we are missing by putting such tight restraints on an obviously talented chef.

      • LindaSta says:

        Welll, at least the show he got is the show he wanted from the start. The idea interests me to some extent. I hope he will do some that i can take to work or pack the ingredients that can be assembled in under 5 min so I have something interesting to eat.
        I don't care for Jeff and don't expect much from his show. But he won fair and square, so I'll give it a chance in hopes of being pleasantly surprised.

      • jrbear says:

        "that woman that has to keep it under 5 ingredients" is Claire Robinson, a stunningly beautiful brunette who is quickly becoming the new "Giada". She is hosting at least one other competition show, and is showing up on talk shows. The weekend cooking shows are really just a stepping stone to bigger shows as they groom them. I think this is why they picked Jeff. His natural humor and good looks could make him a 'real star' beyond sandwiches in no time.

      • Guest10 says:

        I actually think they could put some interesting spins on the whole sandwich concept, but I love your rant about how much FN limits so many of its talented chefs. I completely agree with you about never eating fast food; I'd rather eat ground glass. I have to avoid gluten, dairy and soy, so sandwiches are way in my rear view mirror. I've found myself seriously limiting my FN viewing, and I'm sure all those gimmicks have a lot to do with it. Good cooks/chefs constantly want to expand, rather than limit their horizons. There is hope for these chefs after they've been around a few more years. Once FN chefs prove themselves, they tend to get different shows. Some of them I wish they'd just fire, but that's another rant....

      • Dishy says:

        Paul, you talk about so many people in our country eating "fast food." Like hamburgers or chicken sandwiches from "you know where." I do not go to these places. In fact one time a friend told me to meet her at "McDonalds" (ok, I said it) but i showed up at the "Burger KIng) because in my mind they were the same thing to me. So we never met up that day. The moral of the story? Well, I think that Jeff will relate more to these people. Not saying it's a bad thing, just saying that I'm not one of them. If I want carbs, I would rather prepare a nice Italian supper w/ pasta instead of a sandwich. But, good luck Jeff.

    • frank says:

      A 6 year old kid can make a sandwich! This has got to be one of the most boring and dumb concepts ever. I would not watch his show. Also think about it, one reason we make a sandwich is because it's quick and easy. If I have to cook something for a half hour, I'm making a meal not a stupid sandwich. To me Suzie clearly won the piot show. She seemed relaxed and natural. Jeff's on the other hand seemed to forced and unnatural.

      • Guest10 says:

        You clearly are not a real foodie, since real foodies love to repurpose their cooking. Where would Thanksgiving leftovers be without those hot or cold Turkey sandwiches? Other holidays lend themselves to similar experiments. You seem to have missed the point Jeff was trying to make. Who said sandwiches have to be quick and easy? Talk about pigeon-holing! I also didn't find Susie all that relaxed or natural. She's a good cook, but I doubt whether I'd watch her.

  8. Sheridan says:

    I am also happy Jeff won. He had lots of tools to win. Congrats to the final three. I wish they didn't do that dumb challenge and just let em all do pilots, because I'd love to see Vic's show. I hope Susie and Vic get a show sometime, they all deserve it.

    • Lorik says:

      I like Vic as a person and his food was amazing, but he had a lot of trouble on much that I almost think he made it longer into the competition than he should have. I think they did it this way because there was no way he could do a 3 minute pilot in 4 takes.

    • Donna says:

      I agree with you, I hope Susie and Vic eventually get their own shows. I was kind of hoping Susie would have won so I can get more of her recipes, since I enjoy Mexican Food. Vic on the other hand would have been fun to watch. He seems like a real Cutie Pie. Jeff, i feel will give Bobby Flay a Run For The Money in the Looks Dept. I'm not much for eating too many sandwiches, but I'll probably watch or tape his show to see what he's making. CONGRATS TO ALL THREE FINALISTS!

  9. Gary says:

    Congratulations! But I have a question. Doesn't a "sandwich" show exist currently on the Food Network? Isn't Aaron McCargo's show; "Big Daddy's House" the "sandwich" show. Everytime I see his show he is always making some sort of sandwich. On another note, I hope they can bring back Vic in some fashion. His personality and approach towards food was intriguing. Also, I would like the network (okay... I'm ready for your tomatoes...) to bring back Penny too. I thought her dishes quite interesting. Finally, I REALLY hope somebody scoop up MaryBeth as a Food Critic/Writer. I think she could write her own ticket in that area!

    • mindy says:

      Aaron does make a lot of sandwiches, but he does make other dishes too. I agree with you about Penny's food, probably the most interesting on the competitiion this year. If she hadn't been on FNS and had been given a show by the network, I bet a lot of people (including me!) would have been interested to learn about the cuisine of her culture and give it a try at home.

      • Katrinka says:

        Aaron's show was canceled. Good thing, because I could barely understand anything he said. I don't even know how he won his season.

    • back2kitchentable says:

      Penny's personality doesn't belong on Food Network. She would fit on one of several other networks quite easily.

      • Like the FOX channel.

        • Jahosacat says:

          Why did you have to bring politics into this? Fox has no more, no fewer "strong personalities" than any other network.

          • FoodArchitect says:

            I wasn't thinking politics, but certainly they do have some of the more controversial, edgy, and sometimes ridiculous shows. Sounds like your referring to their pundits plus you may be trying to make something political out of it.

          • Katrinka says:

            Penny could be a guest star on that ridiculous show on FOX, "Bob's Burgers." That would be hilarious!

          • back2kitchentable says:

            "Fox" is not a political channel. You may be thinking of "Fox News" which does take that mantle however...

      • Guest10 says:

        She'd fit right in to one of those Real [cough!] Witches (rhymes with the real word I'm thinking of) of Wherever shows on Bravo. While Aaron does make a fair number of sandwiches, he also makes a lot of soups and other dishes. He has far more range than most people credit. I'm so glad I already have an arsenal of Middle Eastern dishes at my disposal, thanks to some old neighbors and friends of my grandparents. That way, I don't need to put up with Penny's sour expressions.

    • Viewer from Michigan says:

      I'd rather eat ground glass than watch one more minute of Penny--with her nastiness, nose-in-the-air attitude, and weird, exacting pronunciation of every single word. Thank goodness she's gone; I hope it's for good!

      • back2kitchentable says:

        Actually eating ground glass is really nasty and can cause permanent damage so I'd rather watch Penny than eat ground glass. But I get your point!

      • Gary says:

        Regardless. Outside of Jeff, Penny, has benefited from this show the most. She has solidly captured attention nationally and I would not be surprised if she is receiving all sorts of offers at this point. It might have been the reason for her calm demeanor last night. I have read some of her post interviews and she is well aware (so are the producers) the additional eyeballs brought to the network specifically by her antics. She can cook too! Everyone speaks of Susie but I thought there was a show featuring Mexican cuisine already? I don't recall any cooking show featuring middle eastern cuisine. So there is a niche to be filled. Anyway... I just don't think Penny will fade into the sunset. I think we will see more of her... somewhere.

      • Theresa says:

        I SO agree with you on Penny! She was disgusting from early on and she think's she's a good role model. NOT!! I certainly hope FN does NOT regard her in ANY WAY for ANYTHING!

    • John Vanderslice says:

      Actually, Aaron McCargo cooked a lot more than sandwiches on his show. He was very talented. Sorry to hear his show got cancelled. But I guess that makes room for the newest NFS addition.

    • AEHarst says:

      I think Penny had a shot at being part of FN because her food was so good. But she blew it big-time with her attitude as Marybeth's assistant for the Iron Chef challenge. Not very smart!

  10. beachinfrizzy says:

    Soooo the Next Food Network Star has a show about...making sandwiches? OOOkaayyy.
    But it did get him into the finals and Giada hit it on the head, he was one of the very few, if only, contestant(s) that had a clear concept when he came in and stuck with it throughout (as opposed to, say, "Sexy Food/Middle Eastern Mama" or "I'm NOT a Mexican chef/oh here are the sopapillas and bunelos my sombrero-wearing daddy used to make") or the many contestants who didn't have or couldn't articulate much less execute their concepts at all. So good on him. But I won't watch, his voice is just like a Peanuts adult...bwa bwa bwaaah. I'm sure we haven't heard the last of Vic, I'm sure they'll find a venue for him. Susie I'm not sure what they will do with her, maybe as runner-up they already have a slot in mind but while she seemed like a very nice person (all 3 finalists did, I liked how they supported each other), she's pretty blah to me, even when she laid on the Mexican bit pretty thick at the end, like a good contestant.

    Thought it was kind of funny that Howie thought Jeff's video had too much schtick...uh, Mr. RADIO DEEJAY? Does "Y'ALLLL" or "BAM!" or "OFF DA HOOK!" or "YUM-O!" sound familiar? Ever hear of Alton Brown or 'tablescapes' ad nauseum ad infinitum? TVFN is nothing if not one giant schtick-fest.

    • back2kitchentable says:

      Holding a "point of view" all the way through the series isn't necessarily a superb idea if it's a bad POV.

      I think Jeff most certainly had the best personality, camera image, and workability for making a show than Susie. But I would rather watch a show whose content is interesting (such as Susie's Mexican food) than a show that is entertaining but with content that doesn't interest me (Jeff's sandwiches).

      • beachinfrizzy says:

        If it's a bad POV but the judges like you, they will push you in another direction for what they feel you can sell (Herb's "Energy Chef" morphed into "Lightened Latino Chef" which took him to the finals last season). Fortunately for Jeff, "Sandwich King" happened to be a "manly" enough theme as they obviously were looking for the pendulum to swing back to a male winner this year after two smiley-cutesy-perky girlie winners in a row. The sandwiches Jeff makes look like something straight out of the roll-up-your-sleeves-and-chow-down genre of DDD, Outrageous Food, Meat and Potatoes, Food Truck etc. but with a softer spoken, more conventionally attractive, less in-your-face personality to appeal to those who don't care for Guy Fieri and his ilk. Best of both worlds.

        • JamesinAlaska says:

          I wanted Susie to win. She was outperforming Jeff more consistently with her great food--and her smile charges the whole atmosphere.
          But I think I can see why she lost. Food Network already has Mexican food. And a Sandwich show is something "new" that isnt already being done. (I STILL cant see how anyone really needs to be taught how to make a sandwich.)
          While I'm at it--as far as "something new" goes----Hey, FoodNetwotk, how about a new show on how to make fabulous GRAVIES & SAUCES. (I'm serious).
          This is not being done, either. Its something new. No one is teaching us this already. And MANY meals can be "enriched tremendously" by a delicious gravy. Really! It would be a "new Niche."
          I agree with beachinfrizzy---the Mom & Dad/my kid/I'm doing this for my family stuff is waaayy over-talked-about. Not neeeaarr as important as Susie F. thinks. (perhaps she needs to "make" it important to keep her job--?). It's recipes & taste, that counts. From a likeable understandable teacher. Not anyone's childhood.

          • Guest10 says:

            Susie F. is unbelievably out of touch with what most people want, and Tuschman isn't much better. Granted, I'm the great cook/baker I am today because my mother and grandmother, even my uncle, took us into the kitchen at a young age to share their enthusiasm and recipes. They empowered me to experiment, and today, I'm remaking their recipes to accommodate my newly discovered food sensitivities, but I don't want to make all that hearts and flowers stuff the center of my cooking universe.

          • ostrich says:

            Check out Kelsey's Essentials on the Cooking Channel. That's exactly what she does-sauces, etc. Very good show.

            A comment on Susie-she needed to slow her speaking down some...too hyper.

          • Rudyboy98 says:

            in re: Susie's speaking...

            Come to think of it...she was very hyper at times (or was it nervousness showing?) Although IMO I think that she would have overcome her nervousness. How many people grow up in front of the camera in order to be on TV? It must take some acclimation.

          • applestycx says:

            "Funny" how the judges practically forced Susie into the Mexican POV.

          • Dishy says:

            So what did you expect her POV to be? I mean, really?

          • applestycx says:

            she did not choose Mexican. In fact she initially said she was French trained and wanted to make classic food accessable to the masses. No idea how well that would have gone, BUT, the execs had a fit and told her she had to be true to her heritage and cook Mexican. That only assured her not being choosen because they didnt want to have a Mexican food show!

          • Dishy says:

            I know she did not originally choose to prepare Mexican food. The FN just took one look at her (and her name) and decided that she HAD to cook Mexican. Guess no one got the point that I was being facetious.

      • Dishy says:

        I think that Susie had a better personality than Jeff, but maybe Jeff had a better camera image. I will NEVER watch a show about sandwiches--how pedestrian. But spicy Mexican food--yes, would love to watch a show about that, especially with Susie as the chef. If you are a true Susie fan, we have a page on Facebook. You should join. If you need more information, give me a holla!! Oh BTW, Vic certainly didn't have his POV all the way through the series. It was only during the last few weeks. That made me wonder if he could hold on to the "momma's boy" thing or revert back to "Vic Vegas" cause I bet he had that nickname for a long time.

    • Sue says:

      Bravo! And more schtick to come in a few weeks with the gag-worthy Pioneer Woman.

      • beachinfrizzy says:

        Who's that? I've been away and haven't been watching much TV. I"m picturing Melissa Gilbert or Jane Seymour putting down her rifle and swishing her petticoats over to a cuisinart to whip up some shoo-fly pie crust.

        • Sue says:

          They aired her promos last night. Show starts August 27th. About a "city girl" turned rancher's wife. Gag worthy recipes stolen from various places and a "brand" that is a total fraud. Check out pwsux or marlboro woman.

          • back2kitchentable says:

            Hey, I've got her cookbook. It's awesome!

          • beachinfrizzy says:

            That's funny, the year that that Amy "Gourmet Next Door" woman won, the runner up was a woman who's POV was (her words, as best as I can remember) "I'm a Jersey girl who married a Texan and now I cook for cowboys". Sounds like the same thing! Wonder if they 'stole' her concept! Can't remember her name but she had long straight blonde hair a narrow face and big teeth.

          • pegobrien61 says:

            Her name was Rory.

          • applestycx says:

            Rory has a successful restaurant in Vega Texas. Think FN should have gone with her instead?

          • beachinfrizzy says:

            Ya think? : ) I wasn't a huge Rory fan but man she got screwed. Amy was eliminated... Rory and Army dude were the TWO finalists (notice, TWO, not THREE). But then Army dude's application was found to be embellished (said he served in Afghanistan when he didn't, and even SAID he did to the soldiers during the military base catering challenge!) and he was DQ'd. They brought Amy back, and she won, just to quit after 6 episodes (after nearly quitting during the season!) Poor Rory, she was so devastated at the finale she turned around and wouldn't even face the camera, she must have been sobbing. And now to steal her idea and give it to someone else...I don't care who this person is or how many fans or how good her cookbook is... is a classless slap in the face (unless of course, Rory was given first refusal...anyone know?)

          • applestycx says:

            I was shocked when they showed Amy coming back. She had been eliminated; should have been the end of her! The right thing would have been to declare Rory the winner when Jag resigned. Like her or not; fair is fair.. Dragging back an eliminated contestant was not proper.

          • applestycx says:

            re: the Pioneer show idea...they probably didnt ask her since the contestants sign away the rights to their ideas, recipes, etc., but If they did ask Im glad she refused. Seems to be doing ok without them!

          • Lauren says:

            She's got an incredible blog. The woman can cook...and she's got one hell of a following. She's pure, raw, unedited talent.

          • Lauren says:

            Pioneer woman-to clairfy

        • Rodeo Clown says:

          I'm almost certain "Pioneer Woman" is the same lady who was a challengee on "Throwdown" last Thanksgiving (or maybe the one before -- as Martin Yan says, time flies when you're having fun). I think she won, but didn't like her city-girl-slumming-among-rubes shtick.

      • Guest says:

        Oh, yes, I can't beleive they are giving her a show! She is so full of herself.

      • Dishy says:

        Yea, can't wait to go to my back yard and rustle me a dear or some other varmint and grill it for dinner for my family. LMFAO. Sorry, so one more show I won't be watching on FN.

    • laura says:

      At least Aunt Sandrunk is good for some laughs and it's always "cocktail time". But I totally agree otherwise.

      • beachinfrizzy says:

        "San-drunk" (lol), that's a good one and yes, you do have a point about her meals never being complete without an appropriately themed creative cocktail! Hee.

    • Christina says:

      I think what most people aren't getting about Jeff's show is that he makes a really great meal, that doesn't necessarily have to be turned into a sandwich, even though he does ultimately turn it into one. But, America loves sandwiches! Anything in between two pieces of bread is appealing, especially if it's really good, quality food.

      • pegobrien61 says:

        And to get people thinking that if you have some leftovers, why not make them into an awesome sandwich instead of just heating them up? I get what you are saying, people aren't seeing that this isn't a limiting concept, it is a freeing one.

        • beachinfrizzy says:

          Ok, so instead of 'just heating them up' you can heat them up and put them on bread. And then maybe get really radical and have a glass of milk or a beer on the side, depending on the hour. Revolutionary.

      • back2kitchentable says:

        We get it, we just don't care.

    • Kim C. says:

      I feel a little bit like Susie got shafted. Not that I necessarily thought she should win...but when Giada made that comment about how great it was Jeff stuck with his POV I wanted to shout, "but she changed her POV because YOU TOLD HER TO!" Susie came in wanting to do a variety of cuisines with her own spicy twist on it, but was basically told, "you're Mexican so you need to cook Mexican food"...I wonder if she is now having regrets that she didn't run with what she wanted from the start and thinking that if she had, she might now have a show on FN. I wish she'd stuck to her guns and made them believe with her food that her concept was a good one. I would have watched that show. Sandwich King? Meh, not so much.

      • Rudyboy98 says:

        Hi Kim!
        While I agree that Susie got shafted..I don't think that "they told her to" was the reason. She made a fatal flaw on the Rachael Ray show and mistakenly said that "there was a misconception" about Mexican food. It was pointed out that she was apologizing for something that didn't make sense.

        Her Mexican approach was actually fine to me. Perhaps it was scripted for her that way or maybe not. But all of this crying and "I'm doing it for my family" can be a double-edged sword. After all, whoever wins better be able to attract an audience...or they'll get dropped like a hot potato...(pun intended).

        • Kim C. says:

          I was fine with the Mexican food too if that's what SHE really wanted. As far as misconceptions about Mexican food go, it could be she perceived an attitude that doesn't actually exist. Americans love Mexican food, and it's not all just tacos and burritos can find traditional Mexican dishes most anywhere. Possibly the misconception is on HER part...she seemed at the outset to want to distance herself from Mexican cooking. It would be a shame if it was because she thinks people look down on it or don't take it seriously. Either way, I'm not a fan of the crying and bringing up of those "family moments". Save it for "chefography"!

      • applestycx says:

        agreed. the judges assured she wouldnt win by forcing the change. They were not looking for Mexican this year. Really unfair to Susie. Her original POV sounds interesting. Wonder who they will give that to? Bobby Flay?