Guy Fieri, Diners Drive-Ins and Dives

Food Network Canada

It’s hard to look at Guy’s iconic bleached blond, spiky do and imagine a time when it wasn’t so instantly recognizable. Not even three years ago Guy Fieri was a successful North California restaurateur, but having won the second season of The Next Food Network Star in 2006, let’s just say, his fan base has expanded some.

Today he hosts three popular shows on the Food Network; Guy’s Big Bite, Diners, Drive-ins and Dives and Ultimate Recipe Showdown.  A fourth, Guy off the Hook, will be premiering on Food Network, US. caught up with the west coast personage for a chat about Ultimate Recipe Showdown, his hair, gross food and stretching our food dollar.

Elana Safronsky: Tell us a bit about Ultimate Recipe Showdown.
Guy Fieri:
The idea behind the show is that we have shows like Iron Chef on the Network, that are really successful, but this is one where the home cook gets to play and show off their goods. We have all these different categories like Hot & Spicy, Comfort Food, Hometown Favorites, Dessert and so on. People from across the country enter, and the chosen finalists get to compete on TV. We had such great success with it the first go around, we decided to do a second season.  [We] changed the format a little bit – used to be two hosts and now it’s just me – but boy, from the success we had this year in the States, I think you guys are going to love it.

E.S.: You often say you’re a people person and this show – as with all competitions – is quite emotional.  How do you respond to the drama?
G.F.: I’m not a real drama hound. I don’t want to see people break down and lose it, I don’t want people to watch this and be embarrassed of them selves about what happened, that’s not really my thing. I think because of my all American “regular dude” persona, which is really how I am, I’m a good fit for the show. Anybody could be standing in the middle of the chaos and going, “All right, so now we’ve got…” but the contestants felt real comfortable communicating with me about what was going on, what they thought and their feelings and stuff, so it worked well. Matter of fact we’re already getting ready, setting the schedule to do season three in September.  

E.S.: Sounds like it’s well-received indeed…
G.F.: What makes it so compelling is that it has the kind of drama and energy that everyday people can get into. But it’s about as good-natured as it gets. Great Judges…

For the complete interview, visit

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