The wildly popular Netflix series “Queer Eye” has been changing lives across the country – including metro Atlanta – since its reboot in 2018. In each episode, the “Fab Five” help people who want change by giving them lifestyle makeovers. One of those style mentors is Antoni Porowski— the food and wine aficionado.
On his connection with original Queer Eye food expert Ted Allen:
“Ted needed help along the holidays with packaging honey for his friends, so I started out as his personal assistant. Then, I started cooking for him during the week and helped with barbecues in the summer for his pals from the show ‘Chopped.’ I basically started working for Ted and his husband for a couple years, then my career took me to being a gallery director in New York City. I had heard ‘Queer Eye’ was being rebooted and I called him and asked for his blessing and he helped with the process and put in a good word with the show creators.”
On selecting certain meal plans for the show’s makeover subjects, aka “heroes:”
“Sometimes I have ideas of things that I want to do, but you never really know until you meet the person. It’s kind of like the wild wild west the first day. I never try to assume that anybody needs or wants anything, I just ask open-ended questions and sort of see where it leads. If someone wants to eat healthier, then that’s an opportunity to sort of impart any knowledge and wisdom that I have, but if they want comfort cuisine then I’m all for it as well.”
On his love of cooking:
“There’s so much joy in cooking. There’s a meditative power in preparing a meal for yourself and for somebody else. It’s an opportunity to connect with someone and making something from raw ingredients. Those are some of my most cherished times.”
On why Atlanta has a special place in his heart:
“When we started the show in Atlanta there was the innocence of ‘Is the show going to make it?’ ‘Is anyone going to watch it?’ ‘Are they going to love it or hate it?’ We didn’t know. And the bright side of that was the innocent excitement of really freely having fun. We didn’t know what we were doing and it’s still like the ‘Wild Wild West’ because it’s very much so unscripted. It’s very nostalgic being back and I loved being here, it was so nice.”
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