Foodies take to the air: ‘Table For You’ to highlight local restaurants on PenTV

Article from today’s San Mateo Daily Journal:

Foodies take to the air: ‘Table For You’ to highlight local restaurants on PenTV
August 10, 2015, 05:00 AM By Bill Silverfarb Daily Journal

Photos courtesy of Vincent and Michelle Merola
Vincent and Michelle Merola hosts a new show on Peninsula Television called “Table For You” that will first air 7:30 p.m., Tuesday, Aug. 11. The restaurants, however, were all pretty much Italian.A couple living in Connecticut frequently dined out at the 50 restaurants in the small city where they resided.

When they moved to the Peninsula a couple of years ago, they were delighted to see that the area has not only some of the best Italian restaurants at which to eat but authentic cuisine from countries all over the world.

Now, Vincent and Michelle Merola, who met in high school while they both worked at a restaurant, are taking their love for food to television in a pilot funded by Peninsula Television called “Table For You.”

They are wrapping up production for the first episode now and learned Friday that it will first air 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 11.

The couple are the writers, producers and hosts of the show although they have never worked in television before.

Vincent, who worked as a chef for 15 years on the East Coast, did host a radio show in the past, however.

The subjects for their first show are Donato Enoteca, an Italian restaurant in Redwood City, and Puerto 27, a Peruvian restaurant in Pacifica.

The show’s premise is simple.

They first profile the chef or owner. They then watch food being prepared in the kitchen while providing commentary. They then sit down to eat the food all with a camera crew on hand.

They were inspired to take to the air by the food.

“We have a shared passion for good food. We are foodies and want to share our enthusiasm with others,” Vincent said.

While PenTV is funding the pilot, the couple will have to come up with the money to keep the show on the air.

The goal is to find enough sponsors to produce a show a month for a year profiling two restaurants an episode.

In the meantime, they will both keep their day jobs.

Vincent works as a community organizer and policy analyst at a nonprofit that provides services for individuals with disabilities and Michelle works as a nurse for San Mateo County.

“We do eat out a whole lot. We want to share the experience of eating good fresh food, the service, the cocktails and the music that are unique to the restaurants,” Vincent said.

They especially enjoy showing the action scenes in the back of the restaurant.

Eventually, they hope to also do a show on the area’s farmers markets as well as a show featuring food trucks.

It’s a brand-new experience for the couple who met outside a cafe in Connecticut when they were both still in high school.

They worked at a restaurant together, where she was a waitress and he worked in the kitchen. They’ve been inseparable for 15 years and enjoy “random acts of tomfoolery” and a good glass of wine.

“San Francisco gets all the love for being a foodie haven, which it is, but San Mateo County has a lot to offer. The first two restaurants on our program, Donato Enoteca and Puerto 27, show that we are definitely giving San Francisco a run for its money,” Vincent said.

“Table For You” will air PenTV Tuesdays and Thursdays at 7:30 p.m. and Saturdays and Sundays at 6:30 p.m. To learn more go to:

[email protected]

(650) 344-5200 ext. 102