In recent days, I’ve posted a list of the Top 10 Food T.V. Personalities I Enjoy Watching and a list of the Top 10 Food T.V. Personalities That Kind of Get on My Nerves. Some of you have agreed with my choices. Some have disagreed. And some have wondered “Hey, why didn’t that annoying/lovable X make your list?”. Well, what follows is a third and final list – of the Top 10 Food T.V. Personalities I Want to Love But Don’t/Want to Hate But Can’t. Again, in no particular order…
Alton Brown (author, actor, host of such shows as Good Eats, Iron Chef America, and Feasting on Asphalt).
Want to love him but don’t. If I was compiling these lists a year ago, Brown would have made my Top 10 Favorites. Now, I’m not so sure. Most of the time, he’s immensely engaging, informative, and entertaining but, occasionally, I get a real Trebekish vibe off him – sort of a “I know the answers to everything. Aren’t I awesome?” vibe – especially when he’s presiding in Kitchen Stadium. Nice hair though.
Bobby Flay (chef, restaurateur, Iron Chef, and host of shows like Boy Meets Grill and Throwdown with Bobby Flay).
Want to hate him but can’t. I really didn’t want to like the guy and for a while, I didn’t. He’s brash, curt, and overconfident. But, boy, does his stuff look tasty and his show, Throwdown with Bobby Flay, has gone a long way toward endearing him to me. Turns out he’s a bit of a goof. I like that.
Guy Fieri (cook, restaurateur, game show host, host of shows like Diners, Drive-ins, and Dives).
Want to hate him but can’t. If you can get past those frosted locks and breezy bombast, Fieri is actually pretty damn entertaining. And knows what he likes. Which, more often than not, is what I like.
Michael Symon (award-winning chef, restaurateur, Iron Chef, and host of such shows as Food Feuds).
Rachel Ray (cook, author, host of such shows as 30 Minute Meals and $40 a Day).
Want to hate her but can’t. Her food doesn’t really appeal, I hate her use of the term “EVOO”, and I can see how many could find her perennial cuteness off-putting but, damnit, I have a hard time resisting bubbly. She is a cutie and does love food, so she’s got that going for her as well.
Emeril Lagasse (chef, restaurateur, host of such shows as Emeril Live and Essence of Emeril).
Want to hate him but can’t. On the one hand, there’s the failed sitcom and silly showmanship; on the other hand, there’s his awesome southern cookin’ and trademark impish grin.
Want to love him but don’t. I like tough but fair and that was what I was expecting to see from Marco when he hosted The Chopping Block. Instead, he came across as self-important and a little dull.
Want to love her but don’t. Like I said, I love southern cooking and bigger than life characters but there’s something about Deen’s down-home coziness that I just don’t buy.
Want to love him but don’t. I like the fact that he’s very dynamic and clearly enjoys what he does, but find him a little too annoyingly earnest in his food crusades.
Want to love her but don’t. Yes, I know she’s gorgeous and very sexy, but her Italian accent sounds like a put-on and her Italian cooking, at times, feels way more American than Italian.