Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Nerd Man of the Month: Alton Brown

Foodie Alton Brown is a girl nerd's dream: he can cook for us AND explain all the cool culinary science behind what makes that food taste good. As the host of the Food Network's "Good Eats" and my personal favorite, "Feasting on Asphalt," Alton makes food and the chemistry of food seem like the most fascinating thing in the world. "Good Eats" is half-cooking show, half-Mr. Wizard and, uh, half-pop culture variety show. (Okay, maybe those should have been "thirds.") And with "Feasting on Asphalt," Alton took viewers on two inspiring and sometimes touching journeys to roadside diners and family-run restaurants along the side roads and byways crossing the U.S. and running the length of the Mississippi River.

As if that wasn't enough, Alton also serves as host of the American version of "Iron Chef," helping us forget the horror that was the first Shatner-hosted incarnation. And he's published three books -- I'm Just Here For the Food, Alton Brown's Gear For Your Kitchen (which makes me want every kitchen gadget ever invented...and I don't even cook) and I'm Just Here For More Food, all about baking.

Alton's true genius lies in making food seem accessible...and looking good in glasses. He shows, clearly and concisely, that good food is a science, one that can be deciphered with the proper amount of passion and study. Knowing and understanding food will make even the simplest concoction taste better. Plus, who doesn't love to take Alton's little biscuits of knowledge and toss them out at dinner parties. Thanks to Alton, we all look at least 20 percent smarter than we are.

Plus, you gotta love a guy whose website sells these t-shirts:


So far all these reasons and also because his website shows us how to safely deep fry an entire Butterball, the Park Bench is pleased to name Alton Brown as its January Nerd Man of the Month.

14 comments:

Bakerloo said...

Yes! I heartily endorse this decision! I love him and now I have the theme song to "Good Eats" in my head.

Trey said...

Another excellent choice!

I love watching cooking shows, but Alton is the only one who gives me science with my food. Knowing the science helps me to know what I can and can't do to modify the recipe to suit my tastes. Awesomeness.

Diana said...

If you've ever met Alton in person, you'll know everything I'm about to tell you. If you haven't met him, you are truly missing out on a wonderful experience.

I met Alton in Cincy at the Home and Garden Show earlier this year. Not only was he even more handsome in person, he was engaging, witty, and sweet. He made each person who stood in line to meet him feel like they were important. He signed one of my AB books, and I got my husband to take a picture of us. To find someone in television with such sincerity is both amazing and refreshing. If he comes near your town, make the effort to find out what I did.

Florinda said...

My first time commenting here, and two quick things to say:

1 - Totally on board with this choice.

2 - Loving this blog; it feels like I've found my place.

Liz said...

Diana, what a cool story! Thank you so much for sharing it. It's always nice when the people, like Alton, who you think are going to be nice actually turn out to be nice. :-)

Liz said...

Florinda, so glad you found us. Welcome to the club!

Foodie73 said...

What Diana said is so true.
I met Alton at an event in Nashville and he was so very nice and genuine. When it was my time to talk with him he joked with me and we had an honest conversation. I wasn't surprised about this happening because I had heard wonderful stories about how Alton is at events like this. :)
If I wasn't a huge fan before, I would have been afterward.

He is also so handsome in person--not that he isn't a cutie on tv ;-)

gosplgirl said...

I met him in Virginia in 2002 and I would have to concur...sigh! Great article.

Beulah Sorensen said...

I came over from Not Martha and I'm so pleased that I did. I'm a nerd and proud of it. Glad to find my people!

Liz said...

Beaulah, glad you found us! Always happy to welcome another nerd into the circle!

Plum Texan said...

I came over from Not Martha too. My love for Alton is legendary - my husband knows he's in trouble if Alton ever gets a divorce! :) Thank you for posting this. I'll stick around for sure!

Katalatabata said...

I love Alton for all the reasons you listed. He is one of the few reasons I've considered getting cable TV...

yvonneboop said...

Me too, me too, me too! I love Alton! Great choice...

Anonymous said...

Met him last October, am going to see him AGAIN with a dear friend next month. Agree with everything that's been said here;
The man was gracious, genial, and GORGEOUS!