Your Votes By Internet Can Help Her
By Velma Southerland, Living Editor
North Main Street's Jan Charles begins her journey toward her own restaurant at 9 p.m. Sunday when "Restaurant Express" premieres on the Food Network, which is Channel 55 on Comcast, Channel 110 on Dish Network and Channel 231 on DirecTV.
The show will air at 9 p.m. on Sunday evening for seven shows, or through Dec. 15.
A news release provided explains the premise of the show: "In the premiere, Robert Irvine welcomes the nine chefs and aspiring restaurateurs to Las Vegas as they board the Restaurant Express bus.
"Right away, the contestants realize there are only eight beds on the bus as they must pitch themselves and their dream restaurant concept to Irvine.
"One chef's vision comes up short as that person fails to make it aboard and is left behind as the journey begins.
"For the next challenge, the competitors are charged with creating a restaurant with only $500 and six hours before they'll be serving to a hungry crowd of 250 people.
"The challenge is all about profit, and Irvine tells the contestants that the bottom three earners will have to face him in a review. Irvine decided which other contestant will be sent home, with the remaining seven one step closer to their dream."
The show filmed this summer, and even though the finalist has been chosen, Charles still wants folks to vote for her because her cause can be helped by the number of votes she receives.
Charles noted in an email that "the voting shows the network several things for which they are looking, including if you already have a fan base, support and a platform, and how appealing you are to the viewers."
Charles is already involved in a Food Channel show as she appears along with Chef Walter on the Food City Kitchen show on WVLT.
She revealed in an interview how she and Chef Walter typically respond when people ask if she'll replace him when he retires. She views them as "Robin and Batman, and no one's in any hurry for Walter to retire."
Walter jokes that he intends "to stay around until she's doing all the work and I'm getting all the credit."
That's "as close as either one of us is comfortable saying what our situation is," Charles said in a telephone interview on Wednesday.
However, Charles has her fingers deep in more bowls than just Chef Walter's Show. She has authored the "Thrillbilly Gourmet" blog and has about half a million hits for her recipes on YouTube.
Charles attributes her popularity with her unique way of preparing food.
"What I do is so practical and everyday and what people want for their families. They don't want to have to rely on boxes, and they have to do it on a budget, and with no time.
"I am a real-world, home cook, feeding a family like everyone else has to do. I literally am Main Street USA, and I am so grateful I live in a world that this is an option for me."
To vote for Charles, click VOTE-FOR-JAN.