Though Fork & Anchor co-owners Erin Fitzpatrick and Lucy Muellner had never considered it, their customers would often share the same joke with them: “You two should have a television show.”
Now, about two years after opening their popular general store on Main Road in East Marion, the duo may actually be headed to the small screen.
An independent television producer based in Greenport has teamed up with the two owners to film a pilot for a cooking show based on their adventures on the North Fork.
Brent Sterling Nemetz — who has worked with the Food Network and earned three Emmy Awards for his PBS productions — said he was inspired by the “transformation” in food culture on the North Fork.
“It’s become a mecca for foodies,” said Mr. Nemetz, who has lived in Greenport for 10 years. “I thought, the North Fork really needs a food show representing all the great things happening here.”
So when Ms. Fitzpatrick and Ms. Muellner opened Fork & Anchor, he had a feeling he may have found his stars.
“They’re doing some really interesting things,” he said. “Their personalities are great for TV, because they’re willing to get their hands dirty … I know they’re stars. Now we just gotta get it out there.”
Ms. Fitzpatrick and Ms. Muellner have begun filming a pilot episode for their proposed show, called “In Season.” The cooking show would feature the two traveling across the North Fork in search of fresh ingredients they would later use to create dishes at their store.
“It’s kind of ‘Dirty Jobs’ meets ‘The Barefoot Contessa,’” Mr. Nemetz said.
For the pilot episode, the duo went to 8 Hands Farm to learn to shear wool from the farm’s Icelandic sheep, then later used lamb kebabs to make a fresh shepherd’s pie.
The “always fresh” mentality isn’t just for the cameras, the pair said in an interview this
“This is how we cook,” Ms. Fitzpatrick said.
Ms. Fitzpatrick has experience working in radio, but has never been on camera before. Likewise, Ms. Muellner worked in fashion behind the scenes for years, but never in front of the camera.
She says she’s not comfortable having her picture taken, but found working on camera to be easier, because she could act naturally and not have to pose.
Mr. Nemetz plans to film the last scenes of the pilot soon, then shop the show around to networks to find it “the best home.”
“This is an exciting thing that’s happening on the North Fork,” he said. “The timing is right for a television series.”
If the cooking show is picked up, the pair already has a list of adventures they’d like to try, from scalloping in Peconic Bay to visiting the buffalo farms in Riverhead.
Still, they say their focus remains working at the store and helping other local foodies and farms succeed.
“We all have the same interest in helping each other,” Ms. Muellner said.