A new series featuring Bobby Flay is among the highlights of the 22 new skeins that Food Network and sibling Cooking Channel plan to offer in 2012.
“Bobby Flay’s Opening Night,” scheduled for a July premiere on Food, will find the celebrity restauranteur/chef coming to help new restaurants get over the opening night hump.
Food will also spin off two existing success stories: “Cupcake Champions,” which pits past winners of “Cupcake Wars” against each other, and “Chopped: Grill Masters,” which takes the “Chopped” format and sets it in the Arizona desert.
The cabler will also offer two cloak-and-dagger programs, so to speak: “Undercover Critics,” in which Alex Guarnaschelli (“Chopped”), Troy Johnson (“Crave”) and Simon Majumdar (“Next Iron Chef”) secretly take on the role of restaurant reviewers, and “Mystery Diners,” which focuses on undercover patrons who find out what’s really going on at food establishments.
Other key primetime series for Food include “Meat Men,” set in the world of wholesale meat sales, and “Invention Hunters,” out to discover the latest kitchen innovations.
Margaret Cho will also host “Blind Dinner Party,” which takes people from completely different backgrounds and unites them at an ersatz family dinner.
Among the new Food daytime series will be “Trisha’s Southern Kitchen” with Trisha Yearwood and “Home for Dinner with Jamie Deen.”
At Cooking Channel, the new primetime series slate will feature “Roadtrip with G. Garvin,” premiering May 29 and featuring Southern chef Gerry Garvin, and the September launches of “Eat the Street” (which features America’s best restaurant-filled avenues) and “Man, Fire, Food” with Roger Mooking.