Taste the Nation with Padma Lakshmi: Season 1 Reviews

February 23, 2021
Every episode of Taste the Nation is an elegant infusion of the complex histories of our people and the state of our national culture today...
December 2, 2020
While every episode of Taste the Nation offered similar information and education, it's neither turning painful stories into light entertainment nor lecturing. The show finds a perfect balance of facts and feeling, of cooking and compassion.
Full Review | Original Score: A+
July 21, 2020
It is a joy to watch Lakshmi flirt and joke, a delight to see her turn serious and listen intently, tenderly even, as someone shares their coming-to-America story.
July 10, 2020
Taste The Nation with Padma Lakshmi season 1 is a delightful entry to the streaming platform, bringing food and culture while bringing a genuine attempt to educate.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
July 10, 2020
The show does a lovely job portraying the humanity and individuality of immigrant life and how what we think of as "American" cuisine has been shaped by the very different people who make up our population.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
July 10, 2020
This idea lies at the core of Taste the Nation's message: By sifting through the pain of assimilation, the show reveals how immigrants have kept their cultures alive. However, it sometimes fails to go beyond that optimism.
July 8, 2020
One of the most fascinating food series to emerge in recent years: a ruthless indictment of how a nation's cultural heritage has been constructed out of the people and traditions that it has consistently and brutally rejected.
June 24, 2020
Neither prescriptive nor particularly instructive, but it does come off as a little preachy at times. Each culture highlighted is part of immigrant culture, but Lakshmi's natural charisma carries each episode, which makes the show watchable enough.
June 22, 2020
The result is delicious, and makes for genuinely good television - producers greenlighting vapid, celebrity-filled food shows should take note.
June 22, 2020
Taste the Nation feels like a step towards something bigger and better for food and travel TV. More importantly, it feels like a show we all need right now to better understand who we are as a country.
June 20, 2020
It's a series that deftly breaks form from the traditional culinary travelogue again and again. In some food shows, it seems like hosts are stretching to make a political point. Lakshmi, instead, confronts it head-on.
June 19, 2020
It's well-shot, Lakshmi is a warm and knowledgeable host, and the food she discovers is both comforting and surprising.
June 19, 2020
What she reveals is our food is our story, our dishes are our history books, our ingredients are our roots...Padma mixes all these things in and even the most bitter parts prove how amazing the recipes of this American melange taste.
June 18, 2020
Another food show? Yawn. And then we watched, and then we cooked.
June 18, 2020
Taste the Nation wants us all to resist that compartmentalization, to embrace the way food can be a gateway towards better understanding one another, while also showing us how much harder that is to put into practice.
June 18, 2020
Lakshmi links her personal experience with the areas that she visits, which makes "Taste the Nation" feel both personal and universal.
June 16, 2020
By focusing specifically on the immigrant groups that have seen their native dishes appropriated, as well as the ways in which they seek to preserve those original traditions, it inches toward an answer more complex than "fast food."
Full Review | Original Score: B