Jimenez finishes oh so very close … | AspenTimes.com

Jimenez finishes oh so very close …

Staff report
The Aspen Times
Aspen, CO, Colorado

ASPEN – Aspen resident Susie Jimenez finished second in Sunday night’s finale of the “Next Food Network Star” … a taste, or a bite, behind the winner of the summer-long show anchoring the Food Network’s weekend lineup.

She finished just behind chef Jeff Mauro, from Elmwood Park, Ill., who won with what he called an “intense love for sandwiches.”

In the final, Jeff and Susie each had to film a pilot of their own Food Network show. Mauro’s “Sandwich King” cooking show featured him showing viewers how to turn any type of food into a sandwich, while Susie’s “Spice It Up” pilot showcased her creative Mexican food dishes.

Mauro’s new show airs at 7:30 a.m. Sunday, Aug. 21.

Susie, who has been writing a column for page A2 of The Aspen Times during the show’s run, wrote us this final dispatch on Monday afternoon:

“So close but not close enough. It was definitely an experience I will never forget and it was nice to get a taste of what a celebrity chef is like. This just pushes me to follow my passion, and I can’t believe I became someone that people look up to for inspiration.

“I impressed Wolfgang Puck, Michael Symon, Giada de Laurentiis, Bobby Flay, Courteney Cox, Guy Fieri, and the list goes on and on.

“This is definitely not the end of me, just a taste. I want to say, ‘Thank you for following me on this journey.'”

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