The 5 Best Food TV Episodes of 2017

This is the perfect weekend to catch up on the best food-related TV shows of the year. Last week, I offered my list of the top food films of 2017, and here, now, are my picks for the best TV episodes on the major networks, streaming services, and social media channels. It was a good year for food TV, and I’m convinced that 2018 will be even better.

nancy silverton chef's tale netflix screenchow

Without any further ado…

5) Samurai Gourmet, “Mackerel in the Morning”

This Japanese-language show about the culinary adventures of a retired company man is always entertaining, but a handful of episodes, like this one, are surprisingly moving.

Stream it onNetflix

4) Parts Unknown, “Los Angeles

Although he’s known as one of cable TV’s greatest quipmasters, in 2017, Anthony Bourdain let a lot of other people do the talking.

A great example of this new side of Bourdain’s TV persona is the Season 9 premiere of his CNN travel show Parts Unknown, in which Bourdain gets a tour of Latino LA from the artists, activists, and thinkers who got their starts in the community and continue to help it grow. Tony’s dining itinerary is a mashup of new school and old school LA establishments, with stops at barbacoa specialist Gish Bac, Ray Garcia’s downtown hot spot Broken Spanish, and Olvera Street taquito legend Cielito Lindo.

Stream it oniTunesAmazon Video

3) Master of None, “Amarsi Un Po

In Season 2 of their hit Netflix show, Aziz Ansari and Alan Yang take some major risks with storytelling — and it pays off, big time. “Thanksgiving” is the masterpiece. “I Love New York” is the narrative game-changer. And “Amarsi Un Po” is the episode that cements Ansari and Yang’s status as television auteurs. It’s basically a feature-length movie masquerading as a TV episode.

Stream it onNetflix

2) Mind of a Chef, “Classics”

One of the biggest surprises of this series’ sixth season is seeing how Mission Chinese Food’s Danny Bowien draws inspiration from so many different sources.

Stream it onFacebook Watch

1) Chef’s Table: TIE “Nancy Silverton” & “Jeong Kwan

In Season 3 of Netflix’s documentary series, David Gelb and company switched up their very familiar style by focusing on two chefs who don’t work in fine-dining restaurants or compete in the often elitist (and sexist) worlds of the 50 Best list and and Michelin guides.

Nancy Silverton, the co-founder of La Brea Bakery and chef/co-owner of the Mozza restaurants in LA, has been one of the driving forces of California cuisine for the last four decades. At 63, she’s still working through fresh ideas in her restaurants.

Stream it onNetflix