Friday, February 17, 2012

Tom + Chee Filming Reality Show Pilot Sunday and Culinary Smackdown Reminder

Dear Readers, here's a two-fer for you, as I scramble to pack for a weekend of food-lovin' indulgence and potential mayhem in Louisville.

Tom + Chee
, the little TOMato soup and grilled CHEEse tent that launched on Fountain Square two winters ago during ice-skating season and now has two brick and mortar locations – one on Court St. in downtown Cincinnati and one at Newport on the Levee in NKY – has a new project in the works.

T+C has opened the doors of both its current locations to the film crew of the production company headed by former WARM 98 personality Dean Miuccio (which produced local talk show Cincinnality, aired on Fox19 last fall). They were shooting when I stopped in to pick up my to-go order Tuesday, and will be doing another shoot this Sunday at Tom + Chee's Newport on the Levee location, near the Aquarium.

The Sunday event (it has been changed from Saturday) starts at 2:00 p.m. at T+C on the Levee. Mark from Ft. Thomas Matters is going head-to-head with Mo Egger for a T+C "Baker's Dozen" challenge: That would be: consuming 13 of Tom + Chee signature grilled cheese donuts. I'm not generally a fan of "eat-offs," but this one is for a good cause, the Brighton Center.

I only managed to get this one crappy photo of the filming Tuesday at Tom + Chee on Court Street

But I did have an opportunity to talk to Dean and his crew before I scurried back to my office and day job. They have been filming at T+C only 2-4 days but said they are happy with the footage they've gotten so far, of the staff interacting, and of staff interacting with customers. Of course, they need enough footage to build a story around. They are looking forward to following the expansion plans Tom + Chee has in the works. As am I.

This video venture is currently just in the preliminary working-up-to-a-pilot stage. When I asked Dean whether he is targeting a local or national audience, he told me he would be ok with getting it on the air locally but he thinks there are lots of national cable companies looking for this kind of reality programming.

I've been following T+C from their humble beginnings and proud to support them as they continue to dream and grow. If you're new to to my blog, you can find previous coverage here, here, here. Plus the heartbreaking news about their ouster from Fountain Square: here and here. Thanks @beingpolly and @winemedineme for helping me break that story.

On a much smaller scale, here's a reminder that the Culinary Smackdown this month is Battle Cabbage, hosted by Grumpy Granny, last month's winner and this month's host/judge/theme picker, who was kind enough to extend the deadline to Leap Day: Wed., Feb. 29. I seem to have fallen down on my Culinary Smackdown cheerleader duties, but you can find more details here.

To all the new local/regional blogger friends I met at #5B, you are cordially invited to join in the Culinary Smackdown - this month, or next.


Mike Rudd said...

Great example of a small business growing thru word of mouth, social media, customer service, and a REMARKABLE product for all that I have heard.
Can't wait to try it out!

GrumpyGranny said...

You know, I could ALMOST move to Cincinnati...


Jenny said...

I want to find a place just like that in my city. *sigh* I am crazy about grilled cheese.

I'm working on my cabbage recipe this weekend.

Buzz Kill said...

I'm still thinking on a cabbage recipe. We have a grilled cheese place near us called The Pop Shop. It was featured on Bobby Flay's Throwdown last year. I'll have to give it a try.

moi said...

Hope you mayhem-ed yourself silly! I'm thinking about the smack down and what I can do to disguise cabbage in such a way as the Spousal Unit has NO CLUE what I'm serving him :o)