Move over, Michelin inspectors. Public broadcaster WETA is shining a light on the restaurants food-loving locals say deserve attention with Check, Please! DC, a new dining series debuting Wednesday, October 18.
Compass Rose founder and newly minted TV host Rose Previte tells Eater she has very much enjoyed exploring different parts of the city — and the surrounding areas — thanks to the rotating panel of amateur reviewers.
“We’re getting off 14th Street NW and away from the Wharf,” she says of suggestions that have helped guide cameras to “holes in the walls” in Northern Virginia, crab shacks in Maryland, and other unsung eateries across the DMV. “D.C. is finally being recognized for having all this amazing food.”
During each of the six episodes produced so far Previte interviews that week’s guests about the restaurant they chose to highlight, then asks the other two participants for their take on the featured destination. “It’s pure talk show. Absolutely no need to get a consensus,” she says, adding, “We’re around the table, drinking wine. It’s supposed to be fun.”
Although she’s not required to dine at every restaurant covered, Previte says she tries to make it out to as many places as possible. She does not, however, weigh in during the show: That’s what the guest critics are for.
A primer about the inaugural season lists visits to neighborhood eateries in Columbia Heights; Palisades; Takoma Park, Maryland; Sterling, Virginia, and beyond.
The show is scheduled to air at 8 p.m. each Wednesday from October 18 through November 22 on WETA (channel 26). Anyone interested in appearing as a guest in the second half of the season, projected to air in 2018, can apply online.
An invite-only premiere party tonight kicks off with drinks at Smith Commons (“hint, hint,” Previte says).