Mary Nolan has one of those "rise-to-fame" stories you only hear about on E! True Hollywood Story. Nolan, a 2004 graduate of the University of Wisconsin - Madison School of Journalism, moved to New York just a few weeks after commencement. Thanks to an internship at Madison Magazine and a stint in Tuscany learning about cooking, she landed a job at foodie bible Gourmet Magazine.
She worked at Gourmet for a few years before enrolling at the Institute For Culinary Education. With journalism and culinary chops, Nolan decided to make an audition tape for the popular Food Network reality competition, The Next Food Network Star. Despite having zero television experience, Food Network approached her about starting work on a pilot of her own.
Nolan's show, Chic & Easy, premiered May 18. Her recipes focus on fresh ingredients, and simple elegant dishes. She seemed a little rushed and unconfident in the TV kitchen during the pilot. She might relax more on location. I can see her doing a food-travel show, maybe checking out the world's best farmer's markets? I don't think Nolan will be the next big Food Network personality but she'll probably be around for awhile.
Check out Nolan's show on Sunday mornings at 9:30 AM/8:30 central. Once you see it, let me know if you think Nolan just lucked out, or truly deserves her own show. Maybe it's a little bit of both.
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