Orlando resident and Planet Hollywood founder Robert Earl added television host to his list of accomplishments with the debut Monday of “Robert Earl’s Be My Guest” on the Cooking Channel.
I say Orlando resident, and indeed Earl and his wife, Tricia, have a beautiful home in Isleworth, but I’m not sure he’s ever in one place long enough to establish hometown status. “In the last nine days I’ve been in Shanghai, Paris, London, Hong Kong, Mexico and L.A. twice,” Earl told me recently. I caught him by phone back in Los Angeles.
“I would call it a travel guide, restaurant guide, cooking guide all in one,” he said of his new program, which airs every Monday at noon. “Basically I’m taking a view of my life and how I’m constantly traveling and eating and sharing that in a manner that connects with the viewer.”
Before you start getting images of Robin Leach and “Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous,” Earl wants you to know that it isn’t all Guy Savoy, although that upscale restaurant will be featured in an upcoming episode. He also features Pink’s hot dogs, and the premiere episode focused on food truck culture.
Earl has some Central Florida restaurants lined up for the show, including Big Fin Seafood Kitchen on Restaurant Row and Enzo’s on the Lake, one of Earl’s favorite local restaurants. He told me he was particularly excited to finally get all of the ingredients for Enzo’s signature bucatini dish, one that he’s tried to replicate for years. “There was just something missing,” he said of his past efforts with the pasta dish. But he found the secret, and he promised to share it with his viewers. He’ll also, of course, feature his own restaurants, which, besides Planet Hollywood, include Earl of Sandwich and Buca di Beppo.
“It’s not scripted,” he said of the show. “It’s definitely my humor or lack of it, and I’m enjoying it.”
Check your cable provider’s listings for the Cooking Channel.