Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Suffering from Food Shows Withdrawal, Saved by Hulu

My new apartment has everything I need- my own room, proximity to classes, a large walk-in closet, and a parking space. However, one thing I am giving up is cable TV. I was TV-less for over a month before my mom bought me a nice flat screen for my birthday. Being rather thrifty, I really didn’t want to pay $30+ for cable or dish when I only watch three channels, Food Network, Travel Channel, and Bravo. Instead I made a one time purchase of a digital antenna. Once installed, I could watch the basic network channels (ABC, NBC, CBS) and tons of PBS. Unfortunately this wasn’t enough to satisfy my craving for food shows. I really missed competition food shows like Top Chef, educational shows like Good Eats, and shows that feature food from around the world (Anthony Bourdain and Bizarre Foods with Andrew Zimmern). Sure PBS has numerous cooking shows that teach you how to create simple meals, but I just like to look at good food not make them!

Then I turned to
Hulu for some more variety. Unfortunately my favorite networks had many snippets but few episodes, which makes sense because who would pay if they could watch everything online. With some browsing, I found several shows that are giving me my food show fix. One of them is called Great Cocktails.

The premise of the show is to teach viewers how to make great cocktail intertwined with a bit of history and tips from professional bartenders. It has Alton Brown’s fun facts (of Good Eats) and Iron Chef’s flair. I mean they lit alcohol on fire within the first 2 minutes of the first episode! I’m really excited about this show because I’ve always wanted to learn how to make cocktails. Now that I’m 21, I can finally make and enjoy some tasty alcoholic beverages.

PBS has a show called Gourmet’s Diary of a Foodie. Like Anthony Bourdain and Bizarre foods, Diary of a Foodie takes a look at the foods found around the globe. People eat some marvelously strange things and I drool while watching them. I mentally tally all the things I have to try when I travel.

Another show on my 'To-Watch' list is Three Sheets. To my surprise, Hulu offers full episodes of several Mojo shows. I’ve actually watched Three Sheets before, but not regularly. My Dad remarked it was a good show but I usually stuck with my Food Network. Three Sheets follows Zane Lamprey, the human alcohol processor, around the world as he samples the local beers, wines, gins, whiskey- you name it, he’s tried it. It’s really funny to watch more than anything, and it helps that Zane is a comedian. A great show for the 20s crowd.

It's really sad that I finally have a nice big TV but nothing good to watch. I'm waiting for the fall prime time to start up so I can at least watch Grey's Anatomy. In the meantime, food shows on Hulu will be how I spend my evenings. The hard part is limiting how much I watch. Must not watch 20 episodes in one night!

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