A Dessert Party at Ina Garten’s House? How Bad Can That Be?

[Hey, this is Adam The Amateur Gourmet. I’m on vacation in Barcelona, Spain and while I’m gone I’ve asked some awesome people to fill in for me. I first met Jacob Strauss, the Food Network Addict, at the Miami Food & Wine Festival when I was hosting The FN Dish. Jacob’s a great guy and his blog is really sharp and funny. Here Jacob gives an account of every gay food lover’s dream–meeting Ina Garten. Take it away, Jacob!]

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I still have a hard time believing it really happened. Last year I appeared on a Food Network special called Dear Food Network that was filmed at Ina Garten’s massive plantation cozy estate in East Hampton, New York. Yes, the Ina Garten, Barefoot Contessa herself.

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Next Food Network Star, Scandals Galore

I could link to this week’s Next Food Network Star viewing party or my exit interview with this week’s eliminated contestant, Shane but instead I’d like to link to my friend and colleague Jacob, The Food Network Addict.

On his blog this week, Jacob reveals how editors tinker with each episode and change the “reality” of this reality show much as, I’m sure, editors tinker with reality shows all across the dial. In this case, he shows how Lisa’s Rachael Ray show fumble was overdramatized and how Adam’s apparent homerun wasn’t quite a triumph. Most interestingly, though, he shares the language used in their reality show contracts:

“22. Applicants acknowledge, understand, and agree that the Released Parties’ use or revelation of Personal Information and Recordings as defined in these Eligibility Requirements may be embarrassing, unfavorable, humiliating, and/or derogatory and/or may portray him or her in a false light.”

That’s quite a lot to sign away! As shared in my chat with Diana “Should chefs do reality TV?”, I think more often than not the trade-off isn’t worth it. After reading that language, it only strengthens my convictions.