Atlanta’s popular food scientist Alton Brown is celebrating 10 years of his sturdy Food Network show “Good Eats” with two lives shows August 29 at the Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre.
Foodie and TV personality Ted Allen will host. He’ll interview Brown, show favorite moments on a big screen, test Brown’s own knowledge of his show vs. super fans and do interviews with show players such as local puppeteer Lucky Yates and actor Bart Hansard. They’ll even be live music from Patrick Belden, who creates the tunes on the show.
“Good Eats,” now a primetime staple on the network, has aired an incredible 220-plus episodes. “I think it’s a testament to the subject matter,” Brown said in a phone interview last month during a break from taping his commentaries for “Iron Chef America” in New York City. “Food is interesting. It’s one of the last common things people can talk about anymore as our society has gotten more fractured into micro communities.”
He’s also finally working on a “Good Eats” book based on the first 80 episodes. He started watching all those early era episodes.
While nostalgia is good, he realized he had gained more than 25 pounds over the past decade. So he decided to make a major change in his diet and exercise regimen.
The result: he shed an incredible 45 pounds in four and a half months. In fact, he’s now 20 pounds lighter than he was in 1999. His waist size is a svelte 31 inches, down from 38.
“The diet’s pretty extreme,” he said. “I’m even thinking of writing a diet fitness book.”
Brown admitted he’s a “food addict. I wasn’t someone who ate too much but eating not very good things.” For instance, he consumed plenty of sweets and alcohol. During TV shoots, he’d graze a bit too much at the craft table.
His diet doesn’t involve calorie counting. Rather, he simply excised all foods he deemed “bad.” One of his favorites — sardines — remains.
“It’s full of full omega 3 fatty acids,” he said. “It’s really high-grade protein. I also eat a huge amount of almonds.” On top of that, he consumes fruit smoothies every day and runs four miles a day.
“I’m happy with routines,” he said. “Instead of being a big fat hog, I’ll be a fit guy.”
Brown also cut out milk because it was a gateway to cake and cookies. In fact, he said he had to eat absolutely zero donuts or chocolate. “Look — if you’re a heroin addict, you can’t just have a little heroin,” he said. “I haven’t had a dessert since March.”
He still drinks fruit juice, too. Late last year, he did ads for Welch’s grape juice.
“That helped me start working toward a healthier me,” he said.
Ticket prices for the shows range from $25 to $75 for the 2 p.m. show and $25 to $175 for the 8 p.m. show. The $175 ticket includes Brown’s new book and and an after-show meet and greet.
His dedicated fans will be cheering him on. The show “is a great idea,” said Mike Mennenger, of Woodstock, who has been following the show since the beginning. “He’s more in tune with his fans than some of the Food Network stars.”
Over the years, Mennenger said, “Good Eats” has become more polished. “The show now is very clean, very straightforward. They’ve found a rhythm,” he said. The subjects of each show started basic such as pasta and tomatoes. With more than 200 shows under his belt, he has now explored the likes of cocktails and pomegranates.
“I like that he’s not standing behind a counter,” he said.