(Editor’s note: Due to reporter error, the original version of this post misspelled Damaris Phillips’ name.)
On occasion, we here at Insider Louisville drop the ball.
Shocking, I know.
Earlier this year when it was announced that Louisville’s own Chef Damaris Phillips had been selected to appear on one of my favorite reality programs– the Next Food Network Star, on the Food Network– I passed the information on to an experienced contributor who told me that it wasn’t newsworthy.
I should have gone with my gut instead of deferring to experience because not only has Chef Damaris been a joy to watch on the show, a twinkling presence on social media, a local “celeb” who has drawn many dozens to Food Network Star watch parties at Molly Malone’s every Sunday… but she has made it all the way to the top 3.
The winner of The Next Food Network Star receives his or her own show on the Food Network. Chef Phillips’s concept is a show called “Eat Date Love” where she teaches bachelors how to cook Southern food (“the food of love”) to impress their dates.
The winner of the Next Food Network Star will be decided in part by audience votes. People can vote up to 10 times a day through 9 a.m. Wednesday, August 7. The winner will be announced on the next program which starts at 9 p.m. on Sunday, August 11. Vote at this link: http://star.foodnetwork.com/
Chef Phillips is a graduate of Jefferson Community and Technical College with a degree in culinary arts and now teaches there as well.
“We believe the community will support Chef Phillips,” said Tony Newberry, JCTC president, in a news release. “She is everything people have seen on the program and more: A talented chef, a gifted teacher, and wonderful person. JCTC is about helping people reach their dreams. This would be an amazing honor for this Jefferson graduate.”
This was the first season I haven’t watched Next Food Network Star since the series’s inception. And that’s because I haven’t replaced my television since the Great Highland Burglary Event of March 2013. I’d like to believe that if I had been dutifully watching Chef Phillip’s ascent to the top, I would have caught on to just how newsworthy this was sooner.
My penance: voting for Chef Phillips 10 times a day from now until Wednesday.
Your mission: help her bring a little Louisville love to the Food Network by doing the same.
And join me, Chef Phillips, and her many, many fans at Molly Malone’s on Baxter on Sunday, August 11 at 9 p.m. to watch her compete for her own show.