From Top Chef Masters‘ Curtis Stone to Everyday Italian‘s Giada De Laurentiis, a slew of TV-famous cooks have been extra busy lately as they prepare to take their food off-screen — and become new restauranteurs.
Aussie chef Stone recently opened Maude, an eatery named after his grandmother in Beverly Hills, Calif. The spot offers a nine-course prix fixe menu, the entire place seats only 25 diners and each month a different ingredient is highlighted (artichokes in March, peas in April).
“There’s excitement and tremendous creativity involved in having your own place,” Stone told Forbes.com. “You have to live on the edge a little when you’re doing this, and I love it.”
Paula Deen, the Queen of Southern Cooking, is making a culinary comeback. After fading from the spotlight following a racial-discrimination scandal in 2013, Deen plans to open Paula Deen’s Family Kitchen, a 20,000-square-foot restaurant with a retail store, in Pigeon Forge, near Gatlinburg, Tenn., this summer. Her fans can look forward to the chicken-and-dumpling-type fare she’s made famous.
Her four casino restaurants closed last year after she admitted using a racial slur in the past. Deen, a diabetic who recently admitted to PEOPLE “I have been eating way too much lately,” still owns The Lady & Sons restaurant in Savannah, Ga.
But Deen’s not the only TV chef heading South: According to Eater.com, The Chew‘s Carla Hall is also working on Page, a Southern-themed sit-down restaurant within Ronald Reagan National Airport’s Terminal A in Washington, D.C. Winging its way onto the menu: comfort foods like pot pies and deviled eggs, a raw bar and locally sourced produce.
Courtesy Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport. Inset:Robin Marchant/Wireimage
De Laurentiis’ first-ever eatery, Giada, will debut in Las Vegas’s Cromwell Hotel in May with a menu that’s part food, part entertainment.
“I’m finding some unique and fun ways to create, not just great ambiance and food, but a fun show,” the Food Network star explains. Some ideas: having waiters shave cheese over pasta plates tableside and offering flambé desserts.
Courtesy Giada De Laurentiis
And then there’s Martha Stewart: The entertaining guru and prolific cookbook author told Iron Chef Geoffrey Zakarian during his Food Talk radio show at the recent South Beach Wine & Food Festival that she’d like to open a restaurant in the same New York City office building that houses her Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia company.
“There are 11,000 people who work in [the building] and no restaurant,” the entrepreneur told Zakarian. No word on what the menu offerings would be or if the restaurant would include a crafting section!
Other restaurants to look out for: Food Network star Bobby Flay‘s Spanish/Mediterranean bistro Gato in New York City and Top Chef All-Star winner Richard Blais‘ Juniper & Ivy in San Diego, both scheduled to open next month.
Courtesy My Last Supper