We’re All Better Off For Chris Kimball Leaving America’s Test Kitchen

We’re All Better Off For Chris Kimball Leaving America’s Test Kitchen

Chris Kimball
[lead dropcap=”yes”]It’s not often that a messy public divorce, of sorts, leaves nearly everyone — or at least those of us who weren’t part of the relationship—better off for the split. Of course, I’m not talking about a real marriage or family, but of a corporate relationship.[/lead]

To be clear, I’m not criticizing Chris Kimball or America’s Test Kitchen or Milk Street Kitchen. We’re all better off because we now have two great cooking empires, where we used to have one.

In 2015, Chris Kimball left or was forced out of the America’s Test Kitchen empire he had founded several decades before. In case you don’t know, ATK includes an eponymous PBS TV show and a second show called Cook’s Country, a magazine of the same name and its more famous, older sibling Cook’s Illustrated, as well as recipe and equipment review web sites, and a cookbook publishing business.

Kimball founded the company in 1993 and led it from a Brookline, Massachusetts, brownstone until he left. Right before that point, the company had brought on its first CEO as it tried to deal with the changes in the way Americans get their food journalism in the age of the internet, but at some point in 2015 Kimball was forced out of his company by co-owners who thought he was no longer the man for the job.

At the time I was very skeptical of the move. I wrote here that this was a big mistake: “Chris Kimball is the face and personality of ATK and its driving force. This is like John Scully forcing Steve Jobs out of Apple in the 1980s. It is Kimball’s homespun, stolid Vermonter style that underpins everything they do from the magazines to the TV shows to the radio show.”

I’m happy to say I was wrong. Certainly things have worked out for Kimball, but it’s also worked out for ATK.

In 2016, Kimball founded a new food journalism venture in Boston called Milk Street Kitchen with plans for a magazine, a cooking school, TV show, cookbooks, and all the rest. The plan was that Milk Street would shift focus. Whereas ATK’s properties were all about making the best versions of familiar and not-so-familiar dishes we could see on America’s dining room tables, Milk Street would go out into the world’s cultures to bring together techniques and ingredients and recipes in a way that could make more adventurous home cooks want to try them. It wasn’t just about lifting recipes from those cuisines, but about seeing how people think about food in different places.

Meanwhile, America’s Test Kitchen wasn’t sitting still… literally. The old, small brownstone in Brookline was cast aside in favor of a brand new huge space in Boston’s trendy, tech-centered Seaport. Also cast aside was any reticence about taking advantage of the internet to expand ATK’s reach. The web sites got vast improvements (like search finally becoming usable), their social media presence expanded (including a hugely successful Facebook group for subscribers), more personalities to become faces of the company emerged now that Kimball’s vast shadow was gone, they ditched the old Q-and-A/interview style radio show/podcast1 and created a new podcast that is very different from other food podcasts and has a huge audience.

And they’re all good. I’m constantly trying new recipes from Milk Street and my family is enjoying foods from Korea and Vietnam and Senegal and Russia and various Middle Eastern countries. But we’re also enjoying the recipes rising up from the revived ATK outlets, not to mention the videos and podcasts that have a lot more watchability and personality in a style that’s become popular on social media.

I’m sure that everyone involved in the split between ATK and Chris Kimball would rather have avoided the pain and costs associated with it, but as I look at the results more than two years on, I have to conclude that for fans of food journalism the split gave us more than twice the value we’d had before. It’s evidence of the theory of creative destruction, that sometimes a little chaos and disruption is good for the creative soul. Good for them and good for us.

  1. Interestingly, Kimball re-created the radio show/podcast in nearly identical format at Milk Street.

Image Credit

  • 1200px-Christopher_Kimball_2016.56fd89decff24e14b3b055b85602bb52: Melissa Baldino | CC BY SA 4.0
Written by
Domenico Bettinelli
86 comments
  • I agree that there’s room for both shows but do wish that stylistically, they looked a bit different. Both shows have “white” kitchens that look brand new, commercial and bit too sterile. While, desirable in a cooking school, it wouldn’t hurt to add in a few warm, organic touches to differentiate one from the other! I have tried recipes, tips and new kitchen techniques from both ATK and Milk Street. They both have been inspirational, prompting me to try new cooking accoutrements which I “swear off” with every purchase. Authentic recipe enthusiasts are also the winners in this split as each shows brings in wonderful chefs that show off their chops while cooking a variety of authentic cuisines from around the globe.

  • Chris Kimball was the cornerstone of the ATK franchis, both from the creative sid and in choosing quality staff as well as being the Founder we all knew and loved to watch. And remeber he has never been as stuffy as people make him out to be with his frequent use of costumes. Also His way of presenting highly technical issues in easy to understand language that empowers home cooks to try recipes that might have otherwise passed over as too difficult is something that I have noticed is sadly lacking from current ATK fare. When they Let him go by either their choice to discriminate against him based on his age or essentially kicking him out by appointing someone T be CEO over him instead of Making Him Co-CEO along with the other founder and this new person.

    Either way, ATK has lost the heart of their company and their shows. Milk Street may be an odd name for a cooking show…but i prefer to watch a Show featuring an original creative mind at work teaching us to appreciate cooking all over again from an entirely different viewpoint. rather than a show from a hollow shell of a corporation that is too concerned with profit margins rather than with people, including the one person that Made ATK not only possible but popular.

    • You’re so right I don’t like ATK without Chris.. I watch Milk Street because Chris is on that show

        • Chris didn’t even cook on the show. He only went out to find dishes and then get the cast of chefs to cook. The stars of the show were the cast of supporting chefs.

        • I’m glad he’s gone. He doesn’t participate in the food prep, not even on the new show, just stands around waiting to eat. So nothing has changed from ATK or CC. Just the name of the show. His stupid jokes (that aren’t funny). He reminds me of a pompous “butt head”. Didn’t care for him then & don’t care for him now.
          Aren’t Julia & Bridgett chefs?

          • In the abstract, I didn’t object to Chris’s shtick. BUT, he infuriated me time after time by TALKING OVER cooking tips that the ladies were trying to offer up. My impression was often that these little comments from the ladies were “off script,” little insider nuggets that I valued more than the mostly unsurprising recipes. But Chris would interrupt them or talk over them with one of his stupid jokes and what they were trying to tell us would be lost forever. Completely maddening to me. Good riddance.

      • I agree wholeheartedly; Chris was the rock of ATK. Although being a fan of Julia, Jack, Bridget and some of the other crew, the show has lost its appeal by losing its reigning star. Chris was charismatic and cohesive to the show. There should’ve been some viable resolution worked out on the benefit of all. He is sadly missed. He seems out of place on this new venue now called “Milk Street.”

    • I have to agree with you. Although, I still enjoy watching ATK, it is certainly not the same without Christopher Kimball. He made that show, and I tuned in because of him. When possible I watch his new show Milk Street, as I thought he was the driving force behind ATK and Cook’s Country.

  • I subscribed, watched on TV and briefly subscribed to internet access for years. I never warmed to Kimball. I abided his pontification. I was so happy when he was gone. ATK et al better for it.

    • I so agree he was always acting as a spoilt unhappy brat. The current cast is much better. I like it soooo much more.

        • I agree there is room enough for both shows and content. I recall ATK’s humble beginnings and man was I hooked. In no small way by the simplicity and freshness of the show especially after the Nouvelle Cuisine of the 80’s ATK was a breath of fresh air. Remember the beautiful botanical food prints you could order? ATK is my comfy place, I love the the common sense product reviews and have used many recipes (all with success). I love the visuals in the magazines and the special editions, I do own several the ATK cookbooks. I have watched Milk Street and want to give it a chance. In truth, I need to warm up to Milk St., I will continue to give Milk St a chance. In my heart of hearts, there will never be another show that stirs my cooking soul like that of Julia Child, Jacques Pepin, The Cajun Chef (Justin Grimes). Such elegant and delightful people who wanted to share their love of good food and who knew how to laugh.

        • I agree with you that there is twice as much to love. As well Chris seems much happier now. Who knows what stresses were going on set of ATK but the host seems much more balanced and cheerful. I happen to love the set of Milk Street as it allows more focus on the preparation, not a lot of background movement to say “look how busy we are.” His young chefs, especially the women, seem competent and personal and he allows them space to show off without interruption.

      • Agree, Darlene. I like the show better without CK, and Bridgette, Julia et al all seem like a weight has been lifted off of them. They all shine without his pompous, snarky presence. I really enjoy ATK now!

  • Susan Ryman, I agree. His snarkiness and downright insults to other on-air chefs was such a turnoff. Everyone on the ATK show looks so much happier.

  • I couldn’t disagree with you more. I do find myself enjoying Milk Street (and love trying international dishes), ATK is unwatchable. The girls are terrible hosts. The overacting mixed with moaning is nauseating.

    • Sue, I disagree w/you wholeheartedly. Although I was a big fan of Chris’, I think that the two “girls” do a fine job & I’ve never seen them ‘moaning’.

  • I have not yet subscribed to Milk Street, but will investigate soon. I am still using the vast resource which I put together from the original Cooks Illustrated and ATK.
    I found Chris Kimball through a New York Times article “Cooking Isnt Creative, and It Isnt Easy” (2012/10/14). The author described Kimball as “someone who might have sold homeowners insurance to Calvin Coolidge”! Now thats my kind of guy; a refreshing alternative to the commercialised Martha Stewart stuff which taught me nothing. (My wife refuses to cook so learning how was a matter of survival).
    Based on the ATK quasi-scientific approach to such things as pan-seared chicken breasts and bacon-wrapped pork tenderloin medallions, I have assembled a suite of recipes for tackling a range of food selections which forms the basis of meal planning which has really impressed my friends and relatives.
    Thank you Chris, and all the “old hands” on the farm. I am a better man for your acquaintance.
    John Hopkinson
    Nova Scotia (thats in Canada,eh?)

  • Can I ask all of your indulgence and ask how you found this article? Were you googling Chris or ATK or Milk Street? Or did you follow a link? This post has received a lot of traffic and I’m curious where from. Thanks!

    • I was trying to find out whatever happened to Chris Kimball and why he had left ATK, and I followed some links in the articles to arrive here. I loved the ATK show. I have subscribed to Cook’s Illustrated for several years, and I just recently received a (free) sample copy of Milk Street. My family is not inclined to want to try all the different dishes from around the world, so Milk Street is probably not for us. However, I do have a daughter whose family has a willingness to try everything, so may order the magazine for her. As for Cook’s Illustrated without Chris Kimball…for me, the jury is still out. One of my biggest complaints with Cook’s Illustrated is that I always felt that if I have a subscription to the physical magazine, I should have full access to their website, or at the very least, a discounted online subscription. I did contact them directly by phone and ask if there was a discount available. There was no wiggle room, discussion, or negotiation. The answer was a clear “no.” I think this is a big mistake on their part.

    • I googled “update on ATK lawsuit against Milk Steet”. Enjoyed your article. I still enjoy Cook’s Country, though the ladies can be a little cloying. Also totally enjoy Chris and the international flare of Milk Street. Hope they can all live peacefully in the culinary world!!

    • I love all the shows, ATK, Cooks Country, and Milk St. Curiosity got the better of me and I googled whatever happened to Chris from ATK? I will say this, I wish there was a show that showed how to cook semi vegan or vegan with truly good recipes. Becky Hays who does some of that on ATK, or Cooks country does a really good job. I wish she had her own show. I do not plan on becoming vegan but I would sure like to make it a much larger part of my diet as I would like to live longer. I dated a girl many years ago who vegan and I loved the food she made. I am now single and wish I knew how to make more vegan recipes. I said semi vegan because I would still eat fish, eggs, milk, and cheese products. Anyway, that’s my two cents. Loved the show then and love the show now. Hi everybody!!!!

    • I googled Chris then read your article. I wanted to know why he disappeared. I think the show was better with him!! I still watch ATK because it is cooking and no commercials! I do like Milkstreet better because Chris is on it, also I like having international foods Boo to ATK–you lost the personality in your show!

      • Chris was (is) completely knowledgeable in the culinary world! Not many can claim that! So, to all of you that have issues with him…give it up! He’s the best!!

    • I was googling Bridget and Julia and came across a couple of headlines/articles about someone named Chris that left ATK.

      I had no idea who he was because I’m new to watching ATK on PBS (only the last few months). So I then googled him and found this article. That’s when I recognized him – he’s the guy from that Milk something show. It’s not bad, but he’s nothing special and comes off condescending. But ATK is FANTASTIC. I’ll continue watching ATK.

      • Condescending? Chris? No way, only if you have a low self esteem and are unsure of your abilities in the kitchen. Chris, is sure of himself, if that’s his only flaw……….he’s fantastic! Miss you, Chris!!!

    • I believe I was lead here through an internet link, although I can’t remember which? Anyway, you seem like a lovely person (except for the fact that you are a Patriots fan),
      but….love thy neighbor, right? Anyway, I have a question for you…why did you pick Christopher Kimball to bash?? I mean he has extensive knowledge of the culinary world, and I don’t see where you have any! So, what gives?? Just asking.

      • Bash Chris Kimball?! I did anything but bash him. I suggest you re-read my blog post because the point of the post is that we now have two great food shows/magazines/websites where before we had one. Also, there’s no need to be rude and insult me or anyone else here. I may not have as extensive culinary knowledge as Kimball, but I have plenty of my own, thank you very much.

        • Sorry, wasn’t meant to be rude, I guess I punctuated wrong ( on the statement of your questionable cooking knowledge) or lack of. So, again I’m sorry. Anyway, I guess I misinderstood your article, I took it in a negative connotation, so sorry! Take care, keep me posted and nice chatting with you. GO EAGLES!

        • You were absolutely not bashing (per Victoria) Chris in any of these posts. I appreciate you filling us in about the divorce. I was an early subscriber and still have old issues of Cook’s to which I refer. Though Chris impressed me as geeky ATC was a great show. His (ex)colleagues are/were good but I am watching the 20th anniversary show on PBS at this moment and it sickens me Chris is totally absent…like he never existed!

          • I agree that it was an insult to leave any mention of Chris Kimball (not to mention a presence) from the celebration of 20 years of ATK. I thoroughly enjoyed ATK with Chris…..I still watch it but it is not the same without him.

        • I enjoyed your article. Did not feel that you were condescending to either side. I found it because I just saw a FB ad for Milk Street. Made me wonder why Chris had left the ATK show.
          I will look into Milk Street. I did learn a lot thru ATK over the years.
          Thanks for your article.

    • I googled “boy, has atk gone downhill” after watching those bozos pick Skippy super chunky in a peanut butter taste test. 🤡 They seemed to think that more whole peanuts in peanut butter makes it better. Just eat some peanuts!

      • I agree Otis! Too, funny! That is lousy peanut butter, no matter which you use! Choosy moms, choose Jif!!😉

      • Exactly; the 20th anniversary show was not the same with them editing out Chris. He encompassed most of the seasons segments. There’s no way you can do those shows without recognizing Chris.

    • I happened to watch an episode of ATK today. I haven’t seen it in some time as I do not have local channels or cable; I have only Netflix. I am visiting relatives and watched it on their television.
      I was surprised that Chris was absent from the show. I searched Google and your article was one of the results.
      (Side note: I enjoyed ATK more when Chris was on it, but he never appealed to me for some of the reasons mentioned in other comments)

    • For the 2nd time I was watching the 20th anniversary of America’s Test Kitchen & was curious as to what had happed to Chris Kimball & then one link led to another. Domenico, you’re an excellent & interesting writer!

    • I googled ‘since Chris Kimball left’ and your article popped up.

      I’ve gotten subscription offers for CC and CI that are shockingly low priced… and I was wondering mainly if the popularity of the shows or magazines had dwindled since his departure.

      Personally, I watched the first show without Mr. Kimball, and that was it for me. I didn’t enjoy it…though I still enjoyed ‘the girls.’ (Lol) It did seem forced…and Kimball’s presence lacking.

      I did receive the first issue of Milk Street and preparing things at home from around the world with regularity doesn’t interest me…so I did not subscribe.

      I have a huge collection of CC and CI magazines and the special publications spanning 5 or 6 years…and that has kept me going.

      I wish no one ill will. I’ve personally just moved on.

    • Domenico: “Can I ask all of your indulgence and ask how you found this article?”

      I was doing a google search about the lawsuit being settled and trying to find out which show won in the television ratings. Your link was #5 on the first page. I think the search term that matched was ‘better off without him’.

    • I searched why has cooks illustrated gone down hill.

      Now I know why. And I’m referring to actual recipes, not the shows. I never watched.

    • When I typed in “dumbell” into Google, your article came up.

      ATF with goofball Jack who is the center of its ruination along with the hosts (all of whom are good people no doubt) is just unwatchable. The last episode for me is when both hosts were eating pie like they is were their last meal on earth. Pig noises and all….

    • I was googling chris after not finding his ‘easy veg. broth’ featured in his recent risotto milanese recipe…

    • I decided to google Chris just for kicks & giggles while watching the Milk Street marathon on Create TV.

      Although I still watch ATK from time to time, it certainly isn’t the same show without Chris, it lacks a certain level of intellect &/or education value without Chris’s explanations & insights. Moreover, Milk Street has perhaps enticed me to be more open To various cuisines that I wouldn’t have been open to before.

    • Someone commented that on a (very recent) ATK YouTube video about Chris leaving, so I was curious who this “Chris” person was, and your post was highly ranked on Google search. I hadn’t even heard of Kimball beforehand; I have only been watching ATK videos for the last two years. I found your article both informative and interesting.

  • I was watching ATK and I wondered (aloud) if I was the only one that finds the girls nauseating. Google led me here (in a roundabout fashion).

  • I’ve missed Christopher Kimball so I googled and found this article. To my surprise it was written by Dom Bettinelli. I am a big supporter of Father Roderick and SQPN. Small world!

    • You are free to disagree. Maybe you should go enjoy learning to roast a chicken for the 10th time having Julia “oh baby, that’s a looker” when it’s done. 🤣

  • Saw an episode of Cook’s country after not seeing it for a while. Noticed Kimball was gone. Googled to find out what happened. Personally I think the show is better without him. He seemed condescending and overly bland on screen.

  • I could take or leave Chris Kimble. He seemed to have a snotty attitude. The girls did all the work and they are very pleasant on ATK and Cook’s.

  • I was a big fan of ATK because of Chris, I also enjoyed the ladies. I wondered where he went since I thought of him as the glue that held it all together, and I find that with his departure I don’t enjoy it as much as I once did. I did some research and found him on Milk Street and started watching that. The research also led me here. I realize all broadcast shows have a corporate identity in the background. The reason I liked Chris is because his presence shielded me from that and made the show more person to person. Corporations are by their nature forces of destruction and this is just one more example. As Dr Seuss said, ” I do not like them Sam I am.” I think I will move to Milk Street.

  • I miss Chris. Without him you can see the flaws of Julia. I can’t stand her constant giggling and head bobbing like a horse. Bridget is OK on her own.

  • I don’t mind either of the two hosts now, however, Chris Kimball was the whole of the show! I feel lost without his leadership! I miss you, Chris!

  • Folks—don’t believe a word about this so-called “lawsuit” against Christopher Kimball. After David Nussbaum became the CEO and chairman of the board of ATK, there was a concerted attempt to RETAIN Kimball, not fire him. Kimball wanted to produce a different show and refused to sign a non-compete agreement. Hence, ATK filed a lawsuit which Kimball correctly called a “publicity stunt.” Chris was a minority owner of ATK and had no motives for harming his own financial investments. It has been Nussbaum who can’t keep his story straight—and here are just of few of his subsequent contradictory statements….

    “We made every effort to offer Chris a reasonable contract that reflected his significant contributions to the company and are disappointed that we could not reach agreement.”

    “It was not a contract fight, it really wasn’t,” says Nussbaum. “It was the company building, along with Chris, a long term succession plan and Chris saying that he wanted to do something a little bit different as well. We still maintain good relations (I had lunch with him last week) and work together on the radio show, so it’s really evolving — it’s not any kind of revolutionary change.”

    “Chris is an owner of the company and continues to be and wants to see this company thrive….”

    “He was asked to stay with the company and focus his talents on creativity, on-air presence and in-person appearances…Despite our interest in having him stay and after negotiating with him in good faith for many months, he ultimately rejected that approach. We are disappointed that he has chosen a new path, but we respect his choice.”

    Respect his choice? ATK “respected his choice” by filing a nuisance suit against Kimball to divert attention from their own egregious bungling of the situation. The real villain here is not Kimball, or Julia, or Bridget, or Dan, or Bryan, or Erin….etc.

  • All that being said, I think there is plenty of room for both shows. I think for novices, ATK might be a better choice. I watched it the other day to see if it had gotten any better with time but I don’t think it has really. Julia is still unwatchable (Bridget slightly better) and the commentary/jokes/advice all seemed to scripted and contrived. I see the ladies are executive producers, so they sign off on this garbage. Again, if you need to learn how to make pot roast, I guess that’s your show. I personally love Milk Street and the direction it has taken my culinary prowess. Keep it going Chris and thank you (husband thanks you as well 😂)

    • Totally agree with comments about Julia and Bridget. Chris always brought a very natural, conversational tone to the show that is missing now. It’s getting better, but it still feels very scripted and stiff.

  • After ATK brought in a “CEO” things began going downhill, including revenues and profits. Chris wanted more control again, which one never has when you bring in a corporate partner. He was smart to leave (he wasn’t fired, it was a contract dispute), and he started a terrific new cooking venture. I subscribed to both for a while, until it became apparent that ATK was going for glamour over competent recipes, testing and demonstrations. And once they tried to “kill” him with their frivolous lawsuit, ATK was a blackguard in my book. ATK is still declining, Kimball appears to be growing a successful and relevant cooking venue again. There may be room for both, but my prediction is that Milk Street will be the survivor, the one thriving, in a few more years.

  • I love ATK for the high quality recipes. Chris often seemed I don’t know, entitled? I did not like they way he judged the women’s work, but didn’t appear to do much cooking himself. I guess the show was kind of a Rorschach test for your gender biases. It certainly triggered my who-does-he-think-he-is reaction to men in charge of women. I have no idea if that’s fair or not. But as much as I wanted the content, the dynamic between them seriously bugged me. Enough to feel like turning it off. If not surprising that men might have the opposite reaction, but it’s disheartening to see the women on the show being disparaged in these comments by other women.

  • Whoa lady. This is about cooking, not gender inequality! He was the host of the the and the ladies were the chefs. Not any more complicated than that. Like I said in my last comment, if you need to learn how to make fried chicken or pot roast and you can stand the scripted convo and jokes, ATK is for you. Have at it. In the meantime, I’ll get back to my Thai curry. 🙄

  • I wholeheartedly agree with rsdf and the other positive reviews about Chris Kimball. The whole of ATK and offshoots are all about buy, buy, buy, this weekly, monthly, special occasion, seasonal new cookbook and the constant nudges to join all the sites. In the past a table of contents came out at the end of the year in the written cookbooks so we could easily find recipes. That feature is long gone and we, as subscribers are encouraged to constantly purchase special editions that are available in past issues. It would be nice to perhaps have more shows or articles on say more of the basics such as knife skills or more advice on pairings of dishes. So very few people cook these days that more emphasis on basic recipes and skills might encourage more to cook and become comfortable with establishing a core set of recipes, then learn variations from them Chris Kimball used to suggest this basic tenets of cooking.
    I miss Chris Kimball. Yes, he was a little corny but so knowledgeable and gave warmth to the show. I don’t dislike Brigitte or Julia, but the show seems so stiff and scripted. Chris gave the show personality and I really miss him.

  • Agree. ATK just did a marathon covering twelve years of cooks country memorable shows, and in the marathon did not see the appearance of Chris at all. I can only say it was for legal purposes. It’s a shame, because he was the founder and encompassed much of the past segments compared to the present shows produced.

  • I’ve been watching and subscribing to all of ATK’s products and Sister sites from the beginning. I never didn’t like Chris. I don’t miss him at ATK or Cooks Country. I like Bridget and Julia just as well hosting. Everyone on the shows are trained chefs.

    Chris sold his company because he got greedy when he was already wealthy. He messed up when he took all the mailing list and other proprietary information with him. I watch Milk Street and I jane bought a couple of cool items from the site but I don’t subscribe to it.

    I think it’s good to have both shows. I got the link to your article from my Google news feed.

  • I just watched America’s Test Kitchen’s 20th Anniversary Special and there was not one mention or picture of Christopher Kimball. That’s as low class as you can get. They seemed incredibly petty. I mean, if nothing else they could have had a picture of a bow tie in the closing credits, or everyone wearing red suspenders in the final group shot. Twenty years together and they are still so bitter they can’t be decent and acknowledge his contributions to the show?

  • I love the dynamic between ATK “new” hosts Julia and Bridget. I think the show is stronger and more watchable. Christopher Kimball has his own appeal, and Milk Street is the perfect place for his style. Win-Win, in my opinion!

  • To Noah’s point I have seen the behavior of dissing the founder several times in business and Non-profit work. Usually, the sentiment is, ‘Well we’ve been doing all the work for years now. Why should she/he get any credit at all?’ That kind of attitude of ingratitude marks a self-importance all too common for the people who would never have had the lucrative careers they’ve had without the idea and guts the founder made their meal-ticket with.

  • Aha, there it is. I am not alone. I made my way to this link after Googling “Chris Kimball” and I Googled that after watching ATK’s 20th Anniversary and being outraged to find no acknowledgment of the guy who put the show on the map and in our homes for years. I see from these responses that others share my sentiment. It all reminds me of a member of my family, careful not to mention an identity, who in the throes of a divorce got out a pair of nail scissors and the family album and excised her ex-husband. Consequently I don’t have a single image of my grandfather. Oops. Sorry, Grandma. Guess I accidentally outted you as petty and childish. I’d be a fan of Milk Street but often can’t find ingredients. I live in a town of 8000 souls and we have one lonely supermarket. If I walked into Ray’s Food Place and asked for Pomegranate molasses they’d probably call 911. But still. I know my loyalties and now I know that I’m in good company.

  • I just watched the 20th anniversary ATK special and was also offended that not a single mention or acknowledgement Of Mr. Kimble was to be seen. I personally like his style and do sometimes still watch ATK although it just isn’t the same.

  • I had never seen ATK with Chris Kimball on it, so had no basis for comparison. I only was acquainted with him from the Milk Street show. I guess I was late to the scene. I enjoy both shows very much. I searched him on the internet just to find out more about him and only then discovered the connection between the two shows and read about the litigation. I never thought that the shows had a similar format. I am glad that the suit is settled. I agree highly that the shows are both great and offer things that are different from each other. I love Julie and Briget and feel I am lucky that I have nothing to compare them to.

  • I found this blog by researching why Kimball left ATK.

    I never liked Kimball, but the show worked with him. The new ATK seems Plastic and uninviting – they seemed to have gone commercial and all about making money. To leave Kimball out of the 20 anniversary show was appalling and petty.

    I’ll choose Milkstreet over ATK.

  • I have enjoyed both shows since their paths diverged in 2015. ATK has hardly changed since Chris’s departure and as Dom pointed out, we now have more programming to inspire and encourage our lives in the kitchen! Three cheers!! I may point out, however, that my New York Football Giants are the only team to take down the Patriots TWICE in the big game. GO BIG BLUE!!!😎

  • I moved on to J. Kenji Alt-Lopez on Serious Eats. Funny tidbit, Kenji use to work for Cooks Illustrated. You can even see him on ATK episodes.

  • I like ATK and Milk Street and watch them both. I must admit that there seems to be something or someone missing in the ATK episodes. I recently bought the latest edition of the Milk Street cookbook and I consider it to be by far the best currently available and I probably buy a new cookbook every month so I have a few! Don’t buy it if all you want are old standard recipes, this book is innovative and fresh and, I am sure, thoroughly researched and tested.

  • For what it is worth overall Christopher Kimball was an amazing influence to ATK and CC. I don’t know of anyone who could run these shows and cook at the same time I’ve made over 3 thousand wedding cakes besides all the rest in the bakery business. It is WORK After 3 hand surgeries, back surgery, and vein surgery on my legs, I’m still alive and kicking. Through this pandemic I have enjoyed baking at home and creating new deserts. I’ve incorporated wonderful recipes and enjoy Christopher Kimball’s combination of humor and expertise!! After all, who wouldn’t want to wait for an irresistible bite from a roast a pie or cake? Thank you Chris for adding great flavor, texture, and color to my life! God Bless You and your wonderful family!

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