I received an invitation to check out WTTW’s new cooking show: “Dishalicious”. The show is the brainchild of “Check, Please!” Executive Producer David Manilow. Unlike “Check, Please”, the taping of “Dishalicious” is much less intimate, taped in the famed Grainger Studio and features a studio audience of about 250 people. The format is simple: up on stage are three chefs who all prepare a dish. The chefs mingle, joke, and tell stories – all while interjecting instructions on how to prepare the dish. A fourth chef, Chef Sarah Grueneberg (of Monteverde), plays host and ties it all together. Three episodes were filmed, each episode featuring three new chefs. I was fortunate enough to attend “Dishalicious: Mexican”.

 

“Dishalicious: Mexican” was filmed on January 26th, 2018 and showcased Chicago’s premier Mexican-cuisine chefs. Preparing an empanada appetizer was Chef Diana Davila of Mi Tocaya Antojeria. The chocolate tamale dessert as prepared by Chef Alfonso Sotelo of 5 Rabanitos, and the main course – a braised ribeye – was prepared by Chef Rick Bayless, of Frontera Grill. Chef Sarah Grueneberg, the host, greeted guests with a shrimp cocktail dish during the pre-filming soiree.

I had an opportunity to catch up with Executive Producer David Manilow to inquire about the new show, while in it’s infancy. David Manilow felt that people were tired of the standard cooking competition format, and wanted to present to the audience, the rapport among the chefs preparing their dishes – making jokes and sharing stories. I recall Manilow telling me, “let’s see how responsive the viewing audience is, and hopefully we can launch this nationwide; bringing in chefs from various cities. Make it more dynamic.”

The episode I witnessed was incredibly dynamic, and when filming commenced, I shook Manilow’s hand as he smiled and said, “I think we have something special here.”

You have something special here. Be sure to check out the debut of “Dishalicious” in April on WTTW-Channel 11. Be sure to follow my Instagram @TasteWithJais for more photos from the filming.

-Jais