Professional Chef Spotlight - Tyler Florence

Tyler Florence

April 28th, 2008

Tyler Florence became one of the best-loved chefs on television by combining a culinary school degree with a passion for fresh, homey food.

Chef Tyler Florence's Humble Beginnings
Chef Tyler Florence fell in love with restaurant kitchens as a high school dishwasher, and in 1991 graduated with honors from culinary school in his native South Carolina. For four years, he learned from top New York City chefs; then worked as executive chef at Cibo and Cafeteria Manhattan. For nearly a decade, Tyler Florence's cooking garnered praise from major NYC food reviewers.

FoodTV: Tyler's Big Break
Then the Food Network discovered him. His first show on the network was Food 911, where he visited home kitchens to help solve pesky problems with ravioli or meatloaf. Food 911 was followed by Tyler's Ultimate, Planet Food, All American Festivals, and My Country, My Kitchen. His insistence on helping real people cook real food led to his recognition as a leading chef by publications as disparate as Food & Wine, GQ, The Wall Street Journal, USA Weekend, and People. He hosts a regular chef segment on NBC's The Today Show and makes guest appearances on countless other TV shows. His cookbooks include Tyler Florence's Real Kitchen and Eat This Book: Cooking with Global Fresh Flavors. His current product deals--all famous chefs have them--are with Applebee's restaurants, Braun appliances, and Mikasa dinnerware.

Even Chefs Need a Home
After living in NYC for 13 years, Tyler Florence recently moved to his wife's home state to make a home in Marin County, Calif. "I was ready for some California sunshine and some fresh food," he told San Francisco's 7x7 magazine. "It's a whole different take on being a chef. This is the place to do it. It's the American Provence. Everything about this area is right for me."

On his shows and in his cookbooks, Tyler Florence promotes uncomplicated recipes, straightforward flavors, and fresh, organic food. "It's not about foie gras and truffles," he told the Oakland Tribune. "It's really about what you want to cook at home."

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