SOURCE: Firefly Bistro

Firefly Bistro

March 04, 2011 17:01 ET

New NBC Reality Show Features Local Chefs

Firefly Bistro Chefs Chosen to Mentor a Contestant on "America's Next Great Restaurant"

PASADENA, CA--(Marketwire - March 4, 2011) - Local chefs Paul Rosenbluh and Monique King, co-owners of the Firefly Bistro in South Pasadena, will be featured in a new reality TV series to debut on NBC this Sunday, March 6. Paul works full time as executive chef at the bistro, a "global eclectic" restaurant with a southern American flair. Monique is an executive chef at Lifeworks Restaurants, a new Business dining group for corporations that aims to bring "scratch cooking" back to the board room.

America's Next Great Restaurant is the new show created by the producers of Top Chef and Project Runway. It features celebrity chefs Bobby Flay (Iron Chef America: The Series) and Curtis Stone (Biggest Loser) who, along with Steve Ells (founder of Chipotle restaurants) and Lorena Garcia (a Miami restaurateur), are searching for the best new restaurant concept. Since the contestants are not professional chefs and have little experience in the food service industry, they are paired with experienced chefs to make their ideas come to life. Paul and Monique will mentor one of the show's contestants, who will be vying for the chance to have his or her idea financed and launched as a restaurant chain.

Partners in life as well as in the hospitality industry, Paul and Monique have been married for over 10 years and have three daughters. They met in Chicago when Monique hired Paul as a sous chef, but Monique had grown up in California and longed to return. The couple eventually did so and opened up the Firefly Bistro in South Pasadena. It has been successfully operating now for nearly 9 years.

The menu at Firefly Bistro is truly unique. "I suppose technically it's 'modern American,' but I like to call it 'global eclectic,'" Paul remarks as he thinks about the inspiration for the restaurant. "We are inspired by food from all over the world." And that seems to be true. Where else can one find grits, risotto and Chinese spare ribs on the same menu? But each offering is conceived with an unusual twist: the grits may be seasoned with rosemary, or the New York Steak glazed with molasses.

If it weren't for the fact that the food at Firefly Bistro requires such special attention that it cannot be easily franchised out, it might easily warrant the title, "America's Next Great Restaurant." But Paul and Monique are content with the opportunity to participate in what promises to be a hit show for NBC.

"Being involved in a reality cooking show was an incredible amount of work," Paul reflects. "It was great fun, but it was a surreal and somewhat bizarre adventure seeing what goes on behind the scenes in a show like this."

America's Next Great Restaurant premiers on NBC this Sunday at 8:00 PST.

The Firefly Bistro is located at 1009 El Centro Street, South Pasadena, and is open for dinner Tuesday through Sunday from 5:30 pm to 9:30 pm. They also offer brunch on Saturday and Sunday from 10:00 am to 2:30 pm. Live music is featured on Wednesday, Thursday, and for Sunday brunch.

Contact Information

    Paul Rosenbluh
    (323) 240 9936

    Monique King
    (323) 243 1015