Curb Side Bistro owner and chef Alejandro Barrientos may not have beaten Bobby Flay but he still relished his opportunity to compete on the Food Network’s renowned cooking show.
The Odessa resident’s long-awaited episode of Beat Bobby Flay finally aired Thursday night on television.
The show features chefs from around the world competing against each other for a chance to go up against Iron Chef Bobby Flay.
The show is taped in front of a live audience in New York City.
Barrientos competed against chef Andrew Bent from San Diego, Calif. It was the Golden State cook who made it to the final round, defeating the Odessa resident in the first round.
However, Barrientos was thankful for the publicity.
“It’s just a milestone to be able to be on the show,” Barrientos said. “To even be selected was a huge honor. I’m very blessed and I wouldn’t change it for anything.”
Barrientos said he made a pork tenderloin in the round for the celebrity judges who decide who goes to the next round.
“I just wanted to do something classical and one that was full of flavor,” Barrientos said. “I just went back to something classical that I used to make.”
While he may have lost in the first round to Bent, he still enjoyed competing against the San Diego resident.
“It was cool,” Barrientos said. “We were in the green room together and chilling and talking. It was great.”
About 70 people were in restaurant Thursday night to witness Curb Side Bistro’s owner take his talents to the Big Apple, competing on the show at a watch party.
The show was taped back in 2019, leading to a long and sometimes tough wait for the Odessan and his family but Barrientos was thankful to see his episode air on television.
“It’s good, it’s good,” Barrientos said. “It feels like the light at the end of the tunnel. It was two years ago and since then, we’ve been evolving. We opened our second business and we’ve been doing our community work. We just kept on rocking and doing our work.”
Seeing members of the community come by and join the watch party was wonderful, according to Barrientos.
“It’s nice,” Barrientos said. “It’s great to see everyone here tonight. It feels like we’re at home because we have appetizers that were donated by my vendor. They donated a bunch of goodies and it’s great to see.”
The customers cheered on their favorite chef, erupting into an applause during Barrientos’ introduction.
A lot had changed since the taping of the show from October 2019.
For one, a pandemic struck the planet, leading to challenges for everyone, especially the restaurant industry.
“We were just trying to survive 2020 and get through it,” Barrientos said. “Make sure everything is good. This caught us by surprise so we’re rocking and rolling.”
However, good things also happened during that time span to Alejandro and his wife Stephanie who welcomed their daughter Galilee Lhillier who is now eight-months old.
“We’re very excited,” Stephanie said. “It’s been a longtime coming. We’ve had to keep it a secret for two years. But we’re finally excited. We’re glad to be here.”
Stephanie said she will never forget the show’s taping and she and Alejandro’s trip to New York City two years ago.
“When we first got the message, we thought it was a joke,” Stephanie said. “But we’re so blessed. We got to see New York and go out in the town. I couldn’t believe it was happening. We were just two kids from West Texas in the Big Apple.”
Regardless of the show’s result, Stephanie and Alejandro were both excited for the opportunity and enjoyed advertising about the episode for the last couple of weeks.
“Getting the word out has been exciting,” Stephanie said. “The amount of love and support has been great. It’s been overwhelming and we’re thankful for that.”
Alejandro echoed those thoughts.
“The community has been great,” Alejandro said. “They’ve shown great support. I’m from here. Born and raised here. I’m here all the time. It’s really cool to see that interaction.”