July 8, 2014
Posted in: Culinary Arts

New CNBC show invests in restaurant entrepreneurs

Joe Bastianich is a judge on the new CNBC show Restaurant Startup.Many of the people that go through culinary arts courses dream of one day opening up their own restaurant. Luckily for them, chef and restaurant operator Tim Love has teamed up with restaurateur Joe Bastianich to produce a new show for CNBC called “Restaurant Startup.” This reality competition show allows contestants to pitch their restaurant concepts to the duo in the hope of getting enough investment money to make their dreams a reality. The show is slated for a July 8 premiere date.

Contest structure
The format of the show progresses through a few separate phases. First, the contestants have the opportunity to pitch directly to Love and Bastianich. During this phase, the restaurateur hopefuls have the chance to not only present their concepts for the overall dining experience, but also cook food from their proposed menus. The two judges will then decide which ideas they think are viable and which will never work. The contestants who demonstrate the most potential will be given $7,500 to operate a pop-up restaurant on Melrose Avenue in Central Los Angeles. During this trial phase, the judges will evaluate how well the contestants deal with the day-to-day pressure of running a restaurant. Waylynn Lucas from the Bravo show “Eat, Drink, Love” will act as a consultant during the 36-hour preparation period. Once Love and Bastianich have seen how the public reacts to the contestants’ concepts, they will begin investment negotiations. Both men are hoping to find a restaurant that will be very successful and offer a substantial return on the money they invest.

About the judges
Tim Love and Joe Bastianich are big names in the culinary world. Love is best known for his urban western cuisine and string of lauded Texas restaurants, including Lonesome Dove Western Bistro, Woodshed Smokehouse, Love Shack and the White Elephant Saloon. A native of Denton, Texas, Love’s firebrand personality has lead him to become somewhat of an ambassador for the state’s cooking culture. He has become so ingrained in the fabric of the Texas food scene that it is likely any student at an Austin culinary school will have heard of him.

While not a chef, Joe Bastianich has been around the food industry from a very young age. His parents operated many restaurants in New York City while he was growing up, and his mother, Lidia Bastianich, went on to become a popular television personality in the late 1990s. In many ways, Joe has followed in his mother’s footsteps, opening his own string of successful restaurants around the globe while gaining national attention as a judge on MasterChef, MasterChef Junior and Masterchef Italia.