Just in time for Thanksgiving, National Geographic Channel invites viewers to dig into its new miniseries “Eat: The Story of Food,” dished out in six hourlong courses over three nights starting at 8 p.m. Friday.
This isn’t some dry documentary on agriculture or nutrition. It’s a fun, fast-paced look at the history of what we put into our mouths, as well as where the food chain is headed in the future and the cultural impact of our consumption habits.
Nearly 100 chefs, authors and food experts weigh in with their personal stories and, for some reason, the spelling out loud of their names. TV personality Nigella Lawson talks about her love of fried testicles in the second episode devoted to meat, which also features a farewell to Chicago’s famed Hot Doug’s eatery that closed last month.
Seafood, sugar, junk food and grains all get their own installments in the series, which kicks off with a premiere about food revolutionaries. That grand title encompasses a diverse assortment of influential foodies, from the original TV chef Julia Child to spice-seeking sailor Christopher Columbus, whom “Top Chef” host Padma Lakshmi refers to as “probably the food world’s favorite human being.”
Myths get debunked, like the one about the tongue having specific taste spots for salty, sweet and bitter, while fascinating origin stories are shared about food staples like the hamburger, which can be traced back to beef stored under the saddles of 13th century Mongolian warriors.
“EAT: THE STORY OF FOOD”
8 p.m. Friday, Saturday and Sunday on National Geographic Channel
Rating: [s3r star=3/4]