The nation at large will be introduced to Nyack's restaurant scene next month.
Tuesday, October 18 at 10 p.m. marks the air date of "Chopped"—a competitive cooking show on the Food Network—that will feature chef Cris Spezial of popular downtown eatery .
Spezial filmed the scenes nearly one year ago and, and the is planning to present the show on a big screen.
"It's a reality show—a cut-throat chef competition," Spezial said.
Filming took place across three locations, he added: at Spezial's home, at Nyack Gourmet and at a studio in Long Island City, where the actual competition took place. Spezial squared off against three other chefs in front of a panel of judges.
"The filming happened in increments," Spezial explained. "They filmed a bio, they met my family." In total, Spezial spent nearly 30 hours with the camera crew.
As for the finished product, Spezial is still in the dark. "I haven't seen the show myself," he said. The Food Network does not reveal the episode early—even to contestants—so Oct. 11 will be Spezial's first time watching it."
Perhaps the best part of the experience, Spezial says, is that the show offers something beyond pure entertainments—it is also striving to combat hunger. "Chopped" guests are taking part in Dine Out for No Kid Hungry, an initiative that aims to stomp out childhood hunger. According to the organization's website, some 17 million American youngsters struggle with hunger.
"All the chef are getting together and helping out," Spezial said. "We're asking for a donation, and contribute 10 percent of our sales to the cause [for one week]."
"Already, people have been incredibly receptive," he added.