The hit Food Network show Iron Chef is back... well, kind of.
The channel's new spin on this classic show, Iron Chef Gauntlet, just premiered yesterday, and it feels more like a modern-age competition/reality show than the Iron Chef of old.
Instead of the traditional Iron Chef style of two top-rated chefs squaring off in an intense culinary showdown, seven chefs will now be trekking through a series of episodes in an elimination-style reality/cooking competition show to have the chance to face three Iron Chefs and join their ranks if all three are defeated.
The pilot episode had chefs making a single dish based around a specific theme (in this case, wilderness food) and presenting them to host Alton Brown for tasting and judging. This was very akin to several of the dish challenges you'd find in the first half of a Hell's Kitchen or Top Chef episode, since they also have single dish challenges based around themes for the individual chefs to cook, even when on separate teams.
Alton put on his best Gordon Ramsay impression while tasting, even pretending not to like someone's dish before praising it. The drama of that moment definitely made me feel like I was watching Hell's Kitchen or some other contemporary reality cooking show, not Iron Chef.
Afterwards, the worst chef from the challenge and one chef picked by the winner faced off in an elimination challenge. This is where two chefs make a trio of dishes based on a secret ingredient, which then gets judged. The loser of that challenge gets eliminated, and the remaining chefs move on to the next episode.
Basically, this TV show keeps the essence of Iron Chef with the secret ingredients, but all of the challenges are ones you'd find in already existing and successful shows, like MasterChef, Top Chef, and Hell's Kitchen.
If that sounds interesting to you, definitely check out the first episode above and see if you're down to continue watching. If so, you can catch new episodes on Sundays at 9 pm EST/ 8 PM CST on Food Network.
While it may be a mashup of modern shows and concepts and not really like the original show, Iron Chef Gauntlet is still an interesting concept nonetheless.