Guy Fieri of Food Network's "Diners, Dives and Drive-Ins" (Photo/National Pork Board, Diane Bondareff
)Believe What You See
Guy Fieri plunged full throttle into Sarasota-Manatee’s fare on the Food Network’s “Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives.” Chef Robert Irvine transformed a Port Charlotte hole-in-the-wall into a chic eatery in “Restaurant: Impossible.” And Adam Richman cranked up the heat with fiery wings in the Gulf Gate district on “Man v. Food.” Why have TV hosts trekked to Southwest Florida for a forkful during the past half-decade? In case your TiVo missed it, here is a recap: -- Abby Weingarten
4520 S. Tamiami Trail, Sarasota. 922-3797; alpinesteak.com. (STAFF PHOTO/CHIP LITHERLAND) -- "Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives" host Guy Fieri, right, with The Food Network, chats with Matt Rebhan, son of owner Mark Rebhan, about the Turducken (chicken in a duck in a turkey) he made at the Karl Ehmer's Meats at Alpine SteakhouseAlpine Steakhouse
Remember when the TurDucKen at Sarasota’s Alpine Steakhouse got a nod in November on “The Best Thing I Ever Ate”? If celebs Fieri, Bobby Flay and Claire Robinson are talking cuisine, you adjust your hearing. Fieri also gave Alpine a shout-out four years earlier on the “Talkin’ Turkey” episode of “Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives.” Really, where else can you score a boneless chicken that has been wedged into a duck that is stuffed inside a turkey? Do not fake this at home, amateur chefs.
Jose Baserva with his Cuban Sandwich (Photo by Thomas Bender) 8799 Cortez Road W., Bradenton. 795-4898; josesrealcubanfood.com.Jose's Real Cuban Food
Fieri referenced the Bradenton area in September 2011 in the “Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives” Season 12 episode entitled “Southern Flavor.” His name drop: Jose’s Real Cuban Foodon Cortez Road, where the Cuban sandwiches are pressed and authentic, and the holiday roasts are chock-full of chorizo. In the same segment were locales in metropolitan hubs like San Francisco, Calif., and Denver, Colo. Go B-Town!
2200 Kings Highway, Unit 3N, Port Charlotte. 743-3969; capnandthecowboy.com.Cap'n and the Cowboy
In July 2011, Irvine devoted two days and $10,000 to making over the Cap’n and the Cowboy in Port Charlotte on “Restaurant: Impossible,” and the show aired two months later. The ramshackle 1988 eatery, in true reality TV fashion, went from frumpy to fab, and now, cross-country culinary buffs are flooding to Charlotte County for a glimpse of the interior redo (and a taste of the Tuxedo Tuna and Scallops Chardonnay).
- Man vs. Old Salty Dog, Yoder's and Munchies
September 2009 was a stellar month for the Old Salty Dog, Yoder’s Restaurant and Munchies 420 Café, when all three eateries were featured on a Sarasota-based episode of “Man v. Food.” Richman sampled the Old Salty Dog (a famed foot-long hot dog that is deep-fried and dipped in beer batter) and scarfed some of Yoder’s fried chicken and peanut butter cream pie. He even attempted to down the notorious “Fire in Your Hole” hot wings at Munchies before failing epically and getting his photo plastered on the “Hall of Shame.”
Let's Eat: As Seen On TV
/ Tuesday, August 28, 2012