Parents' Guide to

Chef Race: U.K. vs. U.S.

By Joyce Slaton, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 12+

Amazing Race meets Top Chef in juicy reality show.

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The television DNA out of which Chef Race: U.K. vs. U.S. is constructed is clear right from the title: It's The Amazing Race meets Top Chef. And that's not an insult. Turns out these two watchable and popular shows play well together, with the pleasurable tension of watching chefs cook under pressure harmonizing nicely with travel stress and picturesque location shoots. Contestants make their way from spot to spot by any means possible, up to and including begging strangers in the street to let the chefs come in and cook for them. It's awful watching the chefs reduced to desperation, but uplifting when their efforts pay off successfully. And as is usual on cooking shows, it's fun watching chefs make lovely plates of food from sometimes off-putting ingredients.

Hosts Richard Corrigan and Claire Robinson are natural and not overly harsh on contestants. Criticism of food and ethics is pointed but fair and never devolves into personal insults. For their parts, contestants accept criticism humbly with a "Yes, Chef" that will no doubt warm the hearts of parents of back-talking teens and tweens. This is suitable for whole-family watching, particularly for families with culinary enthusiasts.

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