Food Network's "Supermarket Stakeout" has chefs purchasing ingredients from the carts of unsuspecting shoppers in a grocery store parking lot. Photo by Garielle Ribeiro on unplash.com
Written by Ben Hensley
Fresno can see one of its own in a Food Network show this Tuesday as The Painted Table’s Chef de Cuisine Matt Moore appears on “Supermarket Stakeout.”
The episode, titled “Chili ‘Con Carte,” has the chefs making heaping bowls of chili before moving on to breakfast for dinner.
Moore first received an unsolicited email from the Food Network in August 2021 asking him to appear on the show.
“I finished my process around Aug. 25,” Moore said. “After I got confirmed, I flew out to Arizona and I started shooting on Oct. 11.”
“Supermarket Stakeout” is a competition hosted in a pop-up kitchen in a grocery store parking lot, with contenders tasked to purchase their ingredients from unsuspecting customers’ shopping carts — and prepare a dish following guidelines given to them by the judges.
“Supermarket Stakeout” is hosted by Food Network personality Alex Guarnaschelli.
“It was quite nerve racking. I was pretty nervous the night before and leading up to that day,” Moore said. “The way the shooting works, it’s a one-day process where they drive you to an undisclosed supermarket in Arizona. When you get there, the entire kitchen is set up in a parking lot.”
The Painted Table is hosting a watch party for the premiere of the episode on Tuesday from 8 p.m. to 11 p.m. at their event center at 5080 N. Blackstone Ave. in Fresno. RSVP is required for the event and can be completed online at The Painted Table website.
Moore hopes that the episode will help to highlight the culinary abilities of catering professionals — and the Fresno area in general.
“When you’re a caterer, you’re used to cooking in any environment — a garage, a backyard, a rooftop — so that, I believe, helped me,” Moore said. “Keeping it simple was going to be my best process to get the best result out of the show I could.”
Moore grew up in Fresno, attending culinary school at Institute of Technology in Clovis and graduating at the top of his class in 2013. He went on to work in Napa at the prestigious Bottega restaurant prior to moving back to Fresno, where he worked at Benaddiction while catering on the side. After two years at Benaddiction, Moore was hired by The Painted Table and has cooked for parties of up to 2,000.
“What I was hoping is that we’d give exposure to Fresno,” he said. “I obviously want people to know that catering chefs, and specifically The Painted Table catering chefs, are up there with some of the best chefs; you don’t have to work in a fancy restaurant to produce amazing food, and we do that at a large scale.”