Consider yourself warned by the title, but hopefully we haven’t ruined this week’s episode for anyone!

For Washingtonians tuning in to the Next Food Network Star in the hope of cheering on local chef Teddy Folkman, it has been a rough couple of weeks.  For some reason, we never really got to see the camera-friendly Teddy who earned his way onto NFNS with a great performance in his Throwdown with Bobby Flay.  Instead, we cringed as viewers across the country were introduced to a caricature whose over-the-top antics marked him for an early exit.

I guess we should count our blessings.  If Teddy had found his groove and won it all, who knows how often we’d see him in DC as he made his way from New York to Aspen to Los Angeles like so many other celebrity chefs?  Even so, it felt like the ride ended too soon to show what Folkman was really made of, both in the kitchen and in front of the camera.

Here at Capital Spice, we were fortunate enough to catch up with Teddy for another interview (like we did before the premiere).  This time, he called in from Disney World (not just for Super Bowl winners anymore!), where he was in the middle of a week-long family reunion.  We talked to him about his experiences with NFNS, some future plans brought about by the show, and – yes – his performance on last week’s episode.

Check out our Q&A after the jump. (more…)

In the world of dining, even the most loyal local foodies would agree that DC is a small pond with a couple of killer whales. Starting this June, DC can add another bold name when Bravo’s Top Cheftestant Evangelos “Spike” Mendelsohn opens his Good Stuff Eatery on Capitol Hill. On Tuesday night, Mike and I were lucky enough to have dinner with Spike and his partner-in-food Mike Colletti at Dr. Granville Moore’s on H St NE.


Say what you will about his performance on Top Chef: Spike brought this season’s most engaging and controversial character. Doubt us? Take a look at Television Without Pity’s Top Chef forum: On the night before the season finale Spike’s thread comments still vastly outnumber the three finalists, even gripetastic Lisa Fernandes.  So how does this food personality stack up in real life?


Look, I’ll be honest. If Tom Colicchio himself granted me the power to choose any Top Chef participant to start up in DC, I’d probably opt for Harold “Top Chef Saint” Dieterle or Sam Talbot. (Do I need to explain the latter?). Spike, though a serious contestant who came damn near the final three, always had an onscreen persona that put me a little on edge. Part experienced chef (his resume includes culinary school plus due diligence at the openings of Le Cirque and Mai House), part aggressive competitor and part-time schemer, it was hard to tell if he belonged in the good or evil column of reality show contestants. I was worried which version of Spike we might get – would “part-time slickster politician” make an appearance? (more…)