Good Food blog
Man v Food's Adam Richman on extreme eating
Man v Food star Adam Richman on extreme eating and how he fights the dreaded "flavour fatigue".
Adam Richman's extreme eating programme Man v Food shows the former actor sitting down in front of the camera to take on America's best eaters in a battle to see who can stomach the most food.
The series has featured baguettes longer than a basketball player's arm and burgers so big you'd need a mouth like a car crusher to bite through them.
"I really want to film in the UK," he says. "I really, really, really, really do. I’ve been really blown away by how diverse the food scene is getting. How the barbecue scene is growing. I love barbecue and we do a tonne of that."
Interestingly, Richman isn't excited about going to exotic countries to try a range of new flavours. He's more intrigued by a Man v Food series about small regional variations on popular dishes.
"Regionally in Japan, for example, there are variants on similar dishes that I think would be very fascinating to do," he says. "I love how the same food in different regions changes."
One of the things he's most enjoyed about making his new show, Best Sandwich in America, is that all the sandwiches have been "just stuff between bread". Being able to use one food as the barometer to compare the ways people make sandwiches is, to him, "very cool".
"You have a framework and you can see how each person interprets that framework. Also, different restaurants recommend eating food differently, not just cooking it but actually consuming it. You cut the crust off, eat this, dunk this in the sauce, you know what I mean? There are very interesting
changes from place to place."
It's noticable that Richman nearly always gets excited about savoury rather than sweet food. So what does he prefer to tackle in his eating challenges?
"Well, I prefer savoury to sweet so I personally find it less hard to consume," he explains. "I’ve found when there’s a lot of sweet it can be very clogging.
"In San Francisco, in one challenge, I actually asked for a plate of French fries because I needed something to break up the cold, sweetness of ice cream over and over and over again.
"There’s something that professional competitive eaters call flavour fatigue and I sort of was experiencing that because it was cold and sweet and creamy so I went directly opposite and got hot, crunchy and salty. That difference really paid off. That was the kitchen sink challenge in San Francisco, there was a whole lot of ice cream going on."
I wonder if there are times when he's at his fullest when he thinks about going back to the acting career he had before Man v Food began.
"Absolutely, I absolutely would but I would want to make sure it was something that wasn’t a bit of stunt casting and something where I’m not biting off more than I can chew," he says.
Not biting off more than he can chew, coming from the man who can chow down more than 10 men his size - sounds like a challenge to America's casting directors. Let's just hope they can live up to it so Richman continues to amuse and enthuse as he takes on some of the largest eating challenges in the US.