BOSTON – America’s Test Kitchen started off with the same basic premise as any other cooking show: to spend ten minutes displaying essential recipes, explain how exactly you’re doing them wrong, and spend the next twenty minutes shaming you into realizing that you will never master even the most rudimentary of techniques. It’s a fairly ingenious ploy. It worked for Martin Yan. It worked for that creepy Frugal Gourmet guy. It even worked for Bob Ross. And it extends to a multimedia empire, with arms reaching into publishing two magazines (Cook’s Illustrated and Cook’s Country,) a series of well-received cookbooks and a long-running radio program and podcast. And though it’s been involved in an ongoing legal dispute with former host, CEO and professional wearer of bow ties Christopher Kimball, it remains as true to its premise as it did when it first premiered in 2001, which explains both its longevity and millions of devoted viewers.

And if their Seaport headquarters won’t exactly hold several million of those viewers, you can probably expected at least a few hundred will show up at their facilities for the third annual ATK Boston Eats Festival, scheduled for October 24th-26th.

Want to mingle backstage with the likes of Julia Davidson and Bridget Lancaster? Your priorities should be called into question, but you can—for a mere $350. But for those of you on a more limited budget can enjoy the main event for $100, which features unlimited food samples from local restaurants including Blue Ribbon BBQ, El Pelon, La Morra, Pabu, Shōjō, Magnolia Bakery and Neptune Oyster, a live demo from Tiffani Faison and craft beer, wine and cocktails from a cash bar. Or toast their 20 year anniversary party, with food and cocktails provided from Alden & Harlow’s Michael Scelfo, Chickadee’s John DaSilva, Flour’s Joanne Chang, Row 34’s Ally Bayless & Robert Steffen, Shore Leave’s Sam Olivari and Blossom Bar’s Will Isaza for $125.

"The mission really has been the same for 25 years, which is to empower home cooks to succeed in their own kitchens," ATK’s Chief Creative Officer Jack Bishop told CBS Sunday Morning earlier this year. "We send [our recipes] out to be road-tested by volunteer home cooks. And if we don't get 80% of the people to say, 'Yes, I want to make that recipe again,' it goes back to our test kitchen and gets reworked."

See, America? ATK wants to work for you. Sometimes for as little as $350.

ATK Boston Eats Festival will be held October 24th - 26th at their headquarters located at 17-25 Drydock Ave in Boston. Tickets range from $100 - $350. All events are 21+. For more information, visit ATK Boston Eats Festival.

Photo by Margo Brodowicz on Unsplash