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A reality show for winos, plus thoughts on Top Chef

Who'll get crushed?


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Top Chef, The Next Iron Chef, Next Food Network Star. There are plenty of reality shows out there for foodies, but what about the winos?

Public television is coming to the rescue, giving winemakers their very own reality TV show. Premiering on ETV on Oct. 26, The Winemakers follows 12 men and women on their quest to create and launch their own wine label nationwide.

While there are no contestants from the Lowcountry, we'll be pulling for fellow southerner Allan Bass from Macon, Ga. as he battles against others from California, Colorado, New York, New Jersey, Washington, and Texas. Like other reality TV competitions, the show will be filled with challenges, eliminations, and even a catchphrase for exiting contestants: "leave the wine cellar."

The Winemakers will provide a glimpse of the wine production process from the vineyard to the boardroom, showing how wine is made and sold behind the scenes.

ETV is hosting a private premiere-viewing party tonight at the Culinary Institute of Charleston, and the show will air Mon. Oct. 26 at 7 p.m., followed by a second show at 7:30 p.m. The remainder of the series will air that same week, Oct. 27-30, at 7:30 p.m. And if once just isn't enough, back-to-back encore performances air Sat. Oct. 31 from noon until 3 p.m.

As for Top Chef, who are you pulling for? We can't help but root for ATL boys Kevin and Eli, although Eli took a beating in last night's episode. Eli has a bit of a Charleston connection. Last March, he helped out in McCrady's kitchen during the food and wine festival.

Over on the Food Network, they've begun airing probably the best food competition show ever — The Next Iron Chef. Seriously, what chef wouldn't want to be a main attraction in Kitchen Stadium?! A top competitor on that show, Nate Appleman, won the James Beard Rising Chef Award, beating out our own and very deserving Sean Brock. On the most recent episode, he was tasked with making something edible out of un-laid eggs. Ick.


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