The young and boisterous Matt Basile, known better as his pop-up persona Fidel Gastro, has just landed his own television show, Rebel Without a Kitchen, for the Travel+Escape channel. Filming begins in August and the 13, half-hour episodes will air next year.
“They’ll be shadowing me over the next three months from everything from the pop-ups in different cities, the food truck stuff that’ll be happening, and just growing the business as a food entrepreneur,” says Basile, who hosted his first pop-up less than a year ago in October.
The show has been in development since January, when Basile met the show’s producer, Josie Crimi of General Purpose Pictures (The Heat With Mark McEwan, Holmes on Homes) through mutual friends.
“The show introduces the world to the concept of the pop-up and this entire food culture that became really popular in the last few years,” says Crimi. “Every episode will have a main event with a main focus but, at the same time, we’re going to also focus on his expanding business and what it takes to succeed, as well as places in Ontario that viewers have never been to.”