Food in Film: Chef

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This weekend I had the opportunity to attend a screening of the film Chef, which was written and directed by Jon Favreau. If you haven’t already seen the trailer for this film, I highly suggest you do so now:

Feeling hungry yet? I don’t blame you.

It’s with good reason that the trailer warns you not to go on an empty stomach.  The food in this movie is stunning. It makes you wish you could somehow find a way to pass through the screen and onto the set, devouring everything in sight. Between the close-up shots of food being prepared to the crackling, sizzling, and steaming scenes where food is being cooked, I was left sitting on the edge of my seat drooling in anticipation for my next meal. 


And the fact that the film’s characters are so passionate about food is just the cherry on top. I don’t know about you, but there’s nothing more exciting than seeing other people get excited about food.

In the film, Carl Casper (John Favreau) has lost his passion for life. Most of us can relate to that, as we go about our daily lives without taking time to reflect on what motivates us to keep going; on what makes it all worth it for us. For Carl, it turns out to be food. He rediscovers his passion for food, and subsequently life, on accident when a certain misunderstanding with a food critic (Oliver Platt) gets him in trouble.

The movie follows Carl as he starts a new food venture that most of us are probably familiar with: food trucks. He is accompanied by his son, Percy (Emjay Anthony), and his sous chef, Martin (John Leguizamo).  Together the trio open and maintain a Cuban food truck under the name of “El Jefe,” which serves mouthwatering Cuban sandwiches and freshly fried plantains, among other things.


One of the most interesting aspects of the film was how well culture was depicted in relation to food. The food seemed authentic because the culture surrounding it was presented in an authentic manner. If you enjoy the sights and sounds associated with food, and the people who eat food, then you really don’t want to miss out on this film. From the Latin beats and rhythms of Cuban Miami to the jazz and buzz of the Louisiana French Quarter, and even all the way to the country feel and down-home manners of Texas… this film really gives you a “taste” of food culture in various food-famous states.


Chef gives you a great insider’s look as to what food can do for people who love food. At the Mr. Food Test Kitchen we too believe in being passionate about food. In fact, I felt so passionate about some of the food I saw in this movie (You just can’t miss the grilled cheese scene!) that I felt inspired to find recipes on our site for some of the recipes I saw in the movie.  Here are just a few:


Ultimate Grilled Cheese

Cuban Sandwich

Brisket Sliders

I hope you get a chance to check this great film out when it comes out in theaters on May 9th. We’d love to know how this movie inspired you! 

Disclaimer: I was not paid to attend this screening or write this blog post. I was simply invited to watch the movie, and I thought I’d share my thoughts with all of you! All images link back to their original source. 

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