Ugly Delicious is Momofuku’s David Chang’s new Netflix series about food around the world, looking at their origins and their meaning. Via the New York Times:
David Chang and his new Netflix series, “Ugly Delicious,” can most easily be defined by what they’re not. Mr. Chang is not a fastidious French kitchen god, a high-energy American showman or an Anthony Bourdain-like poetic observer. “Ugly Delicious” is not a stand-and-stir cooking show or a pack-your-bags travelogue.
The show would, in some ways, look at home on the Food Network. Its eight episodes take on topics as conventional as pizza, barbecue, fried chicken and Chinese cooking. The cameras pan over jars of artisanal tomato sauce and capture the squirting juices of xiao long bao. Ritualistic pronouncements of deliciousness abound, often punctuated with a certain four-letter word, and the occasional non-culinary star — Aziz Ansari, Jimmy Kimmel — drops by to both lend and borrow celebrity wattage.
What Mr. Chang and the food writer Peter Meehan, his co-star and fellow executive producer, are attempting is something more ambitious, though: an extended television essay, in the form of free-associative, globe-trotting conversations about food and culture.
Since this is Mr. Chang we’re talking about, the conversations often take the form of arguments, and include a fair number of insults, which we’re to believe are good-natured.