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What To Know About Ciao House, Food Network’s New Italian Cooking Competition Series

9:29 AM EDT on April 12, 2023

The cast and hosts of Ciao House

Co-hosted by Alex Guarnaschelli and Gabriele Bertaccini, the shot-in-Tuscany show premieres Sunday, April 16

What happens when 10 ambitious American chefs move into a Tuscan villa to compete for a career-making prize? We’re about to find out on Ciao House, the new culinary competition series, premiering this Sunday, April 16 on Food Network and Discovery+.

Co-hosts and judges Alex Guarnaschelli and Gabrielle Bertaccini will run the proceedings, with the chefs living and cooking together in what marketing materials describe as a “breathtaking villa.” The cooking competitions will test the chefs’ mastery of Italian cuisine, with challenges that highlight noteworthy elements of Italian cooking. The “living together” part implies drama, and early reports about the show compare it to Survivor and Big Brother—albeit with Italian food cooking face-offs.

“From real-life nonnas showcasing how they make pasta from scratch to a lesson with the head butcher of a three centuries-old family butcher business, each challenge is accompanied by a local experience steeped in tradition,” according to a Food Network release. “The competitors must also navigate alliances and rivalries as they pick their own teams and each week, the losing team must vote off one of their own. In the end, only the last chef standing wins the life-changing grand prize: an immersive culinary education across Italy, training with renowned Italian master chefs.”

In interviews to promote the show, Bertaccini, who is Tuscan himself, touts the surroundings as a key element of Ciao House, while Guarnaschelli, one of the best-known Italian-American chefs on TV, calls it "transporting."

Ciao House’s competing chefs are: Omar Ashley (Avenel, NJ); Corey Becker (Brooklyn, NY); Saba Duffy (Framingham, MA); Trenica Johnson (Houston, TX); Jess Mahoney (Los Angeles, CA); Preston Paine (Dallas, TX); Sarah Raffetto (New York, NY); Justin Robinson (Atlanta, GA), Natalia Rosario (Chicago, IL) and Matt Watson (Staten Island, NY). 

The 8-episode series premieres on Food Network and Discovery+ Sunday, April 16 at 9PM/8PM Central and runs each Sunday.

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