Food Network Launches Hipper, Edgier Cooking Channel

The Cooking Channel is probably what your grandmother calls The Food Network when she can't remember the actual name of the channel where the Rachel Ray lady makes up her own language. But The Cooking Channel is now also a real thing. The Food Network announced that on May 31 they're launching a spinoff network, The Cooking Channel, which they describe as "a little grittier, a little edgier, a little hipper" than what they've got going now. Suffice it to say, Sandra Lee, Paula Deen and Ina Garten are not invited, but they'd probably kill to bring in Anthony Bourdain.

Exactly what will define this hipper, edgier network is still to be determined-- new shows mentioned by The New York Times include "Unique Eats," which focuses on artisanal gourmet stuff, and a pending deal for "Hungry Girl," the blogger who conjures up things like recipes for danishes made with marshmallow fluff and Cool Whip. Throw in no fewer than six shows imported by Canada, and you have what might be the kind of deflated mess that would make Giada de Laurentiis howl.

Then again, food is having a moment right now, and it's one that's largely not represented by Sandra Lee's methods of making a horrifying Kwanzaa cake or even Ina Garten's art-directed Hamptons lifestyle. People are obsessing over natural food, local food, packaged food, exotic food, anything really, and none of that has been adequately represented by the Food Network, full of shows that seem to exist to keep you company while you cook for your family. Is an entire new channel, rather than a few new Food Network shows, the right way to tap into this market? As a member of that demographic, I have no idea-- but as an avid Food Network fan, I also look forward to having even more food porn to fill my day.

Katey Rich

Staff Writer at CinemaBlend