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The Best Things

Side Dishes: The Food Network visits two Burlington institutions


Published July 20, 2010 at 3:59 p.m.


On a Food Network series called “The Best Thing I Ever Ate,” the channel’s stars share details of their favorite dishes. Lucky for Burlington, more than one of those stars has a Vermont connection.

Bove’s has already been featured on “Throwdown! With Bobby Flay,” but another Food Network crew dropped by last Friday. According to “Sauce Boy” Mark Bove, the cameras focused on how he makes the restaurant’s roasted-garlic sauce. “They were amazed that we peel all our garlic by hand and that we go through 200 pounds a week,” says Bove.

The crew even stayed for dinner at the restaurant, which opened in 1941 and hasn’t changed much since. Half the TV folks tried the garlic sauce, says Bove, while the other half sampled the lasagna he’d pitted against Flay’s. Once they had a taste, Bove says, “They were all pissed that I lost.”

Who recommended the restaurant? Bove’s contract prevents him from naming names, but he does say, teasingly, “She loved it.” Could it have been University of Vermont grad and “Ten Dollar Dinners” host Melissa d’Arabian, who visited the Italian eatery when she came to town in June?

The Food Network also made a stop at A Single Pebble. The restaurant’s chef/owner, Chiuho Duval, could not be reached for comment. However, Nicole Ravlin, Bove’s PR person at PMG Public Relations, was able to confirm a few details. She says Duval, who replaced A Single Pebble founder Steve Bogart, prepared his mock eel recipe at the request of none other than “Good Eats” host Alton Brown.