Tag Archives: Chef Walter Staib

CHEF TELL Lifetime Discussed on PCN-TV

5 May

pcn-tvLate in April 2014, the author of the biography, CHEF TELL The Biography of America’s Pioneer TV Showman Chef, Ronald Joseph Kule, visited the Philadelphia bureau of PCN-TV (Pennsylvania Cable Network-TV) to tape a show segment of PA BOOKS, at the request of network President and CEO, Brian Lockman.

Another guest participated: Chef Walter Staib. Staib, proprietor of Philadelphia’s iconic City Tavern, who wrote one of two forewords to the biography — the other is by TV host Regis Philbin — was a friend of (the late) Chef Tell (Friedemann Paul Erhardt).

The author had asked Chef Staib to come to the taping to add historical perspective to the commentary, and he did not disappoint, also bringing anecdotes and fresh strudel for the whole crew. (Staib is the host of the Emmy-winning TV series, A Taste of History.)tj-walter261x362

During the hour-long taping, host Lockman interviewed Kule about his book, why he wrote it, and what it was like to research and write about such a renowned chef. Turns out that Kule was the late chef’s brother-in-law. He shared an anecdote about a breakfast that inspired him to write the book, as well as several other facts about the chef, including some of his famous quips.

40 MILLION BABY BOOMERS

Baby Boomer Philadelphians, a part of Tell’s fan base of 40,000,000 avid viewers, will remember watching Chef Tell on TV-show segments of Dialing for Dollars and Evening Magazine, and his guest chef appearances on the Mike Douglas Show, The Dinah Shore Show, the John Davidson Show and the Merv Griffin Show, among others. He was the chef who boasted he was the “fastest chef with knives in the East and the West” — a status he proved on one of his many appearances on LIVE! with Regis & Kathie Lee, by handily breaking the record for preparing and cooking a five-course meal… in under five minutes!

Chef Tell Manor HouseTell’s signature sign-off, “I SEE YOU!” was a household phrase for the three decades he appeared on television and in numerous live cooking demonstration shows in venues across America.

The book, CHEF TELL The Biography of America’s Pioneer TV Showman Chef, published by New York City’s Skyhorse Publishing, came out in October 2013, in hard cover, audiobook and eBook formats. Books are available through Barnes & Noble Booksellers, other store retailers, and online. Kule has garnered all five-star reviews to date.

The place to order author-signed, hard-cover editions for gifting is the author’s website. Included in the book are new Chef Tell recipes, as well as a DVD offer for Chef Tell cooking shows.

Barnes & Noble Booksellers Signing Event

Barnes & Noble Booksellers Signing Event – Author & wife.

PCN-TV’s PA BOOKS will air the one-hour show about the Chef Tell biography on Sunday, June 15, at 9:00 p.m.

YOUR COMMENTS AND REPLIES ARE WELCOME HERE (BELOW).

© 2014 by Ronald Joseph Kule and KuleBooks LLC. All Rights Reserved.

celebrity chefs remember Chef Tell

15 Nov

“Chef Tell was a man of great humor and incredible skills in the kitchen. He brought wonderful food to the table as well as love and laughter. Author Ronald Joseph Kule did an impeccable job bringing to life Chef’s humor and passion for food,” wrote Iron Chef Cat Cora about the recently released biography of the American culinary icon.

“The culinary atmosphere in Tell’s time, unlike the competitiveness that exists today, was one of great cooperation among chefs. That ambiance was created among his peers and his audiences by Chef Tell, who made cooking fun,” wrote Chef Walter Staib, TV host of the PBS series, A Taste of History.

“Chef Tell etait une speciale, homme tres special.” (“Chef Tell was a special, a very special man.”) Acclaimed and honored French chef ,Georges Perrier, commented in an interview regarding his friend.

“I saw how everyone seemed to know Tell and how they treated him respectfully. I got my first taste of the celebrity lifestyle up close and personal and I was impressed,” said Executive Chef John Barrett of the Black Bass Hotel in Lumberville, Pennsylvania, then hired by Tell to work in his newly acquired Manor House restaurant and then invited to accompany him on a trip to a friend’s wedding on Grand Cayman Island. He continued, “Tell is a chef’s chef, someone I wanted to work with.”

Wherever Chef Tell ventured he worked cooperatively with his peers. In the early days of his cooking career as a lowly apprentice he had the backs of his contemporaries when their mentors got too out of line or kicked one of them too hard. In fact, given the opportunity one afternoon, Tell “accidentally” locked inside of a walk-in freezer the group’s fiercest executive chef just to give him a taste of his own medicine and to recover a morsel of respect for all of the other apprentices. That day may have witnessed the young Tell’s first standing ovation for work accomplished in the kitchen.

Chef Tell was royalty to the best of his contemporaries. The renowned chef David Bouley stepped up to the plate when Chef Tell walked into Bouley in Manhattan with a large group eager to have lunch there. Disregarding other celebrity diners seated nearby, Bouley personally took Tell’s order of several entrees for the entire party and then prepared the foods and delivered them himself, including one of his distinctive desserts.

If Tell’s brand of celebrity status to this date has been missed by younger generations, it is only because his life story has not seen the light of day in modern publications, until the release of his biography which is beginning to fill the vacuum of Chef Tell’s absence. Here and there, people are remembering the tall German chef and reading his story, which is capturing the minds and hearts — even the palates, since there are recipes in the book — of younger readers. From a 40’s-Something reader, “Chef Tell was a larger-than-life figure. I had no idea, because my generation missed him completely, but in my mind I am comparing him to any “rock star” or sports figure around today. His biography successfully captures and portrays the essence of how famous this guy was — what a rags-to-riches story!”

As more celebrity chefs find the time to read about the chef who blazed the television trail on which they stand, the kudos come in, agreeing with legendary TV host Regis Philbin, “I think there’s a little bit of sizzling here. Honestly, I can feel it. The ions are flying back and forth… it’s a shame he’s not with us now, but his memory lives on with this book.”

 

Ketchup and Anchovies?

5 Jul

I’m feeling like fireworks and Heinz Ketchup* today, the 5th of July.

Of course, we celebrated our nation’s freedom yesterday, and there were fireworks on display across the nation. But today we are 57 days away from the release of the late CHEF TELL’s biography. He was America’s pioneer TV showman chef… America’s first “rock-star” TV chef.

Having written the book — forewords by TV hosts Regis Philbin and Chef Walter Staib — I can tell you it is a timeless tale of one man’s overcoming odds and obstacles toward his cherished goal, which makes it a fascinating life-lessons book for anyone, teens and older. Baby Boomers will really love it… 40 million of them were his fans in the 1970s and 80s!

Chef Tell loved to play with food, and he told his audiences the same thing, which Julia Child mimicked years later. Actually, at times, he recommended plain ketchup on salads with anchovies.

*Heinz Ketchup: “57 Varieties”… the story behind the slogan:

Heinz 57 varieties, one of America's best-known ad slogans

Heinz 57 varieties, one of America’s best-known ad slogans

“The number 57 has mystical significance to the Heinz company, but it has never had much to do with reality. The slogan was invented by the company’s founder, Henry J. Heinz, during a ride on the New York elevated in 1892. While he was reading the car cards on the ceiling, Heinz’s eye alighted on the slogan “21 styles of shoes.” To pedestrian minds such as our own this probably doesn’t sound like one of your killer advertising mottoes, but that’s why we’re not millionaire ketchup barons. Heinz could recognize genius when he saw it. Cogitating briefly, he conceived the immortal words “57 varieties,” and immediately hopped off the the train and set about plastering the nation with the now-famous pickle-plus-number logo.” (source: straightdope.com)

© 2013 by Ronald Joseph Kule and KuleBooks LLC. All Rights Reserved.

About Chef Tell’s biography

20 Nov

Before Wolfgang, Emeril, Paul, Jacques, Bobby, Mario, Rachel & Sara, there was …

CHEF TELL

This blog was started to remind Baby Boomer fans of the late Chef Tell, who in the 1970’s and 1980’s was the first true “rock-star” chef in America.  He was mobbed at airports and public venues wherever he appeared to perform his infamously entertaining cooking demonstrations.  From Women’s Shows to PM Magazine and Evening Magazine segments, The Dinah Shore Show, The John Davidson Show, The Merv Griffin Show, The Mike Douglas Show and numerous appearances on LIVE! with Regis & Kathie Lee — even Robin Leach’s Lifestyles of the Rich & Famous  … Chef Tell was America’s most pioneering TV celebrity chef from coast-to-coast!

If you remember Chef Tell, you can post comments and anecdotes to share with other fans here.  This is the official blog for the forthcoming biography of Chef Tell, forewords by Emmy-winning TV hosts, Regis Philbin and Chef Walter Staib (PBS, A Taste of History).

copyright 2012 by KuleBooks LLC.  All Worldwide Rights Reserved.

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