Cheers to the Rebel: New Star Justin Chats With Fans

by in Food Network Star, July 24, 2012

Justin Warner's Winning Moment Season 8Just one day after being crowned the next Food Network Star, Justin Warner was already on the job.

He stopped by Food Network’s offices on Monday to join a Facebook chat with some of his biggest fans. Offering a rarely seen glimpse of what makes him tick, Justin answered fans’ questions about everything — his hopes for his new show, the craziest meal he’s ever made, his favorite movies, hair product of choice and more. Read on for some of the best moments from our Q&A session with Justin and get to know this Rebel With a Culinary Cause.

Debbie Smith: Congratulations, Justin! Has the shock worn off yet? My question is: In five years, what other projects would you like to do for FN? I ask this because many of the stars branch out after their first show settles in. For example, Guy with his Big Bites, DDD and hosting cook-offs.

Justin Warner (JW): No, the shock has not worn off. I'm still stupefied. I think there is an array of applications for someone like myself.

Regina Petrucci: What's your favorite moment from being on the show?

JW: My favorite moment was when Martie got to make a pilot too.

Maria Eivers Medley: What was the one experience on the show that you wish you could have done differently or do over again?

JW: I rarely live with regrets, but I could have come out of the box a little stronger and been a better leader. Probably could have tried to defend my team a little better.

Alicia Kaity Audette: So excited for you! Any ideas on the format of your upcoming show? And will Martie be a guest?

JW: I'm open-minded and excited to meet professionals as this is my first time doing a TV show. If Martie Duncan can make an appearance, I would be honored!

Jessica Ng: Justin! Congratulations on becoming the next Food Network Star!! Since Alton Brown was your mentor and main "cheerleader," what is the number one lesson he has taught you that you will teach America in your new series?

JW: Everybody has something to teach. You just have to find out what you're here to teach. I'm here to teach people not to be scared of being wacky, because we're all a little bit wacky.

Katy Franks: What do you think will be your biggest challenge being a Food Network star?

JW: Waking up early will be my biggest challenge!

Carol Gardener Pike: Hi, Justin ... CONGRATULATIONS from Alabama! When you wake up hungry for a snack in the middle of the night, what do you reach for??

JW: Good question. I reach for dried squid (love that stuff!).

Rebekah Anne Faulk: What 3 ingredients couldn't you live without?

JW: The three ingredients I can't live without (aside from salt) are yuzu, vanilla and 350-degree oil. I love frying stuff!

Nicole Leigh Morris: I know you like foods that stretch boundaries, but what is your favorite "normal" food?

JW: Pizza, corn on the cob and strawberry-rhubarb pie are my favorite "normal" foods.

Jorden Helton: What is the most outrageous thing you have ever cooked?

JW: The most outrageous thing I have ever cooked ... that's tough! I made a pig filled with chicken filled with eggs — that's the most outrageous one in recent memory. I also made waffle stuffing that was AMAZING.

Kelsey Nguyen: What is your favorite film?

JW: The Muppets (new). Or Star Wars (old).

Kristel LaFreniere: What hair products do you use? Love the pouf.

JW: I prefer Bumble & Bumble hair products.

Visit Food Network for more scoop on the Star finale and flip through Justin’s behind-the-scenes scrapbook to get an insider’s look at this brand-new star.

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Comments (131)

  1. Sumay says:

    Congratulations Justin!

    We have enjoyed watching you. For us home cooks, I would hope that along with some of your quirkiness - which I don't mind seeing - I hope you will throw in some things that we could really make ourselves and enjoy. I don't mind thinking out of the box - I just want to make sure that there's something in the box that we would not only 1. find the ingredients 2. enjoy making and 3. enjoy eating. As a mom of kids (who fortunately love a wide variety of foods including sushi) I just don't want to learn about REALLY STRANGE THINGS that would not be useable for my experiences.

    I am sure though - that you could really provide many twists and turns in different foods and can't wait to see what you make of it.

  2. FanFare57 says:

    Congrats, Justin! I'm looking forward to seeing your new show. You're a very talented young man. Good luck!

  3. guest 7 says:

    Justin, congratulations on your "wacky" claim to FN fame! Have a question if anyone can answer. Have you been culinarily trained and only cooking for only 1 1/2 years? Read this in one of your interviews...If you can't answer here, maybe some of your informed fans will be able to do so. Or maybe Yvan can! He is one of your biggest supporters!

    • sirena warner says:

      just to answer your question Justin was NOT culinary trained and basically taught himself everything!
      Im like his biggest fan!!! Go Justin!!

    • Henly5 says:

      Justin's bio states that he is "self-taught."

  4. guest 35 says:

    It's too bad Justin won. He gives me the creeps. I won't be watching anything he does.

    • I love Justin! says:

      Then for pity's sake, Why are you on if you know that all they're gonna be putting on here from now on till the next season is about [love this guy!] Justin?

      • guest says:

        Not everyone who posts here has to join the love fest for Justin. Everyone's entitled to their opinion.

        • jance says:

          Did you ever learn the saying "if you have nothing nice to say, say nothing at all"?

          • guest says:

            Well you'll have to scold a lot more posters than just me. All I did was say to each his own. If everyone with an opinion that is opposed by someone else had to stop posting, then it would be alot quieter (and more civil) than we've seen all season.

          • cathy says:

            You did not just say "to each his own" Apparently you felt it necessary to be rude as well.

          • guest says:

            I said everyone is entitled to their opinion - it's the same thing. How is it rude to say we are all allowed our opinions? Apparently I'm not allowed mine. I call that rude right back.

          • JM61 says:

            because, jack wipe it's a congratulations thread. let me guess, you're the one showing up at baby showers saying, I hope nothings wrong.

          • Guest says:

            Who are you to call someone a jack wipe for voicing their opinion just because it doesn't agree with yours. I also didn't join the Justin love fest because I simply don't like him and would not watch his show. Does that make me a "jack wipe" too? I think that you are the jack wipe! You have your opinion - we have ours - that simple. Talk about rude!

          • guest says:

            Obviously, you've congratulated the wrong guy.

          • cathy says:

            Of course your entitled to your opinion. It was the snarky way you said it that bothered me.

        • JM61 says:

          Yes. but your opinion is no longer relevant. Justin WON. So many people are going to watch him. This is a congratulatory thread for him. GO SIT in your overstuffed chair, and shut your mouth. I'm sure there's a paperboy you can destroy tomorrow.

          • guest says:

            Who are you to decide who's opinion is relevant? No one cared about being negative all through the season. Or who they were negative about. We all have those we like and those we don't. Now is no different. Get off your high horse.

          • JM61 says:

            It's not relevant to this contest. It's over. Spew it all over , it won't change the outcome. So it's only going to be relevant in your living room. Unless you're some kind of nut who's going to walk the streets wearing sandwich boards protesting the FN . And that would just make you sad. Sorry, sadder.

          • guest says:

            Bad try. You avoided the issue. All opinions are relevant. It isn't up to you. No one is required to be only positive. Some others would have been better. It may not change the outcome but some of us feel the outcome wasn't good. And we can say so just like people did during the season. Look at all of the people still whining long after the fact that Melissa has a show. No different.

          • logical says:

            He won but his show didn't last. All of you who thought he was so original and outside the box were wrong.

        • Jessica says:

          Then ur stupid as well guest!!!!

          • guest says:

            If everyone who voted for him was so smart, why didn't his show last?
            Who's stupid now?

    • Priya says:

      I agree guest 35. He's too wacky and weird for me.

    • Mooselover says:

      Ur stupid then.

    • Nadia Jensen says:

      I diisagree COMPLETELY with you. Justin deserved to win. Justin is not creepy; he's a Rebel with a Culinary cause

    • kelly says:

      I agree and won't be watching his show either. I am glad that Michelle didn't win and I kinda thought she never had a chance. This is the third FN show she's been on and I didn't like her in the others either. She's been on Chopped and lost and that show Scott Conant used to host where you got to open your own restaurant for the night. I think she lost that one too.

    • @zoemoire says:

      scardy cat...````

      don't know what ;yer lookin at

  5. I love Justin! says:

    Wow Justin, you are amazing can't wait for your new show to come out; I will watch every minute of it!

  6. S. Scott says:

    I absolutely hated the foremat used this year! Go back to the previous years' setup, add Alton to the judges' panel along with Bob, Susie, and Bobby, but leave out Giada. She does other things well, but she came off as silly and immature on Food Network Star.

    • FanFare57 says:

      I agree with everything you said. Giada did seem to be lacking in the maturity department.

    • ehmily says:


    • ChelseaB says:

      Yes can't stand Giada in that role - her expertise is toward the lower end of FN's lineup...guess pounds of make-up and cleavage get you far in life...

  7. S. Scott says:

    Please skip the team foremat and go back to the previous years' setup.

    • Dianna says:

      You struck a chord, brother! There was no way this could end up as anything but a cheesy, maudlin emotion fest when you make otherwise reputable chefs advocates for competitors! Let each competitor survive or fail on their performance based on the opinions of professionals -- read "experts" -- who make decisions based on a multitude of market factors.

    • Adriana says:

      I do really agree with you...I do not like this new format..This year winner not a good choice...but the nation has spoken..who is going to vote for a latino..?not in this nation....Yvan keep it going... I will see you in FOODTV will be a star!!!! you are a star!!! like other guys that they compete and did not won and they have awesome shows on TV!!! YVAn you are the best!!!!!

    • Michael says:

      Ugh, no

  8. MLM says:

    So happy you won, Justin! Team Alton was my favorite, and from the very beginning, I had four whom I thought were contenders for the one spot: yourself, Martie, Emily, and Ivan, the lone one out of the other group. Way to pick them, Alton! Justin, so happy for you! Please have Emily and Martie on at some time, too, as well as Ivan. :)

  9. Elisabeth says:

    I liked the team format, but would have liked to see more of the real mentoring, advice given to the competitors, and less of the Giada vs Alton nonsense, which seemed Jr. Highish. It's also hard for me to believe that each week's elimination was real - as the sequence of keeping each team even seemed too perfect. You could predict who would be voted off each week, just because each team needed to stay competitive. Giada's was a little extreme in her hugginess of her team, and Alton, who I normally like, was just annoying. This round felt like the FN needed to replace what they lost in Good Eats.

    • jance says:

      I agree that the elimination process seemed rigged so each team would remain even. If the show is about the best cook for tv it shouldn't have mattered if the top finalists all came from the same team. Trying to be politically correct I assume. Nonsense!

  10. jance says:

    I appreciate the kindness that Justin has shown Martie (my personal favorite). It is nice to see that two people can compete, but clearly be supportive of each other.
    I have a question for FN: Are these contestants compensated for their expenses? It could be deadly expensive to give up a job, move to another city, pay for flights etc. It would be interesting to know how this is handled.