Since 1982, Burt Wolf has produced over 4,000 segments for Cable News Network (CNN), 800 segments for ABC (the American Broadcasting Company), 125 half-hour programs for the travel division of The Discovery Channel, and 350 half hours for Public Broadcasting. The New York Times described his programs as “the best food, travel, and cultural history shows on television.” He was the first recipient of the James Beard Foundation Award for “Best Television Food Journalism,” and has been nominated for two Cable Ace Awards and a national Emmy in connection with cultural history. His reports have won awards in the United States, Europe and Asia. They are videotaped entirely on-location throughout the world.
His cultural history programs have included: The History and Future of Shopping; a twenty-part series on Sacred Pilgrimage Sites; and a five-part series on the History of Immigration to the United States.
Burt is presently in production with his ongoing series entitled TRAVELS & TRADITIONS. Shot entirely on-location, this series travels throughout the world looking at the history, culture, customs, foods, and festivals that give a particular place its unique character.
He is also in production with a series for public television titled ARTCOPS. This weekly series of half-hour programs addresses the fact that over 6 billion dollars of art, jewelry and antiques are stolen each year. The programs describe which objects have been stolen, why they are valuable from a historical and cultural viewpoint, how the theft took place and what the public can do to help recover the items. A central theme is the importance of these articles to America’s cultural history.
Burt’s programs are broadcast on Public Television to 90% of the television homes in the United States, then translated into Russian, Polish, Ukrainian, Romanian, Bulgarian, Mandarin and Korean and syndicated to an international audience of over 100 million.
During his 35 years as a journalist, Burt has written or edited more than 60 books including The Cooks' Catalogue, which Time Magazine described as “the definitive book on cooking equipment.” For a number of years he authored a weekly column for The Washington Post and was a regular contributor to the online publication Salon.com.
Clients for his work as a marketing and public relations consultant include Procter & Gamble, eBay, ConAgra Foods, Federated Department Stores, the government of Switzerland, the government of Taiwan, the government of Norway, the government of Canada and the government of Chile.
He has worked on product development for a number of major companies including Proctor & Gamble, General Foods, McCormick and the Origins division of Estee Lauder. In the area of cooking equipment he developed the Waring Commercial Blender, the first anodized aluminum pots and pans for home use, as well as major lines of bakeware and cutlery.
In 1975, in partnership with Federated Department Stores, he designed and managed a group of 276 food and cooking equipment shops that were installed in Federated stores throughout the United States. The franchise was eventually extended to May Company, Marshall Field, Ives and Macy’s outlets.
In 1980, Burt designed a limited partnership investment vehicle that was used to develop a branch restaurant in Memphis for the Brennan Restaurant group of New Orleans. He was responsible for raising over 2 million dollars for the restaurant, as well as its physical plan, menu and operating systems. The restaurant is still profitable and has had two expansions.
In cooperation with a group of leading Public Broadcasting Stations, Burt has developed a travel company that takes PBS viewers on tours and cruises throughout the world. By promoting the cruises on the stations, the company receives millions of dollars of free media exposure. And by passing on a substantial amount of the income to the stations, the company has been able to offer considerable support to Public Broadcasting. The company is a limited liability corporation owned by Burt and PBS viewers who have traveled with him on his cruises. Recently, the company began to offer additional tours and cruises hosted by local PBS personalities.
Burt was the founder of the Double Elephant Press. For the past forty years, Double Elephant has been publishing signed numbered portfolios containing the work of some of the world's greatest photographers including Walker Evans, Lee Friedlander, Garry Winogrand and Helmut Newton.
Burt recently completed a project in which he worked with curators at New York City's Metropolitan Museum of Art on a PBS television program and companion book examining the relationship between photography and gastronomy and titled What Are They Eating In The Photograph?
Real American Food: Restaurants, Markets, and Shops Plus Favorite Hometown Recipes
by Burt Wolf and Andrew F. Smith (Hardcover - Jul 18, 2006)
The New Cooks' Catalogue (Hardcover - Oct 24, 2000)
Good to Eat: Flavorful recipes from one of television's best-known food and travel journalists
(Hardcover - April 6, 1999)
Gatherings and Celebrations (Hardcover - Nov 1, 1996)
Burt Wolf's Menu Cookbook (Hardcover - Jul 1, 1995)
Eating Well (Paperback - Jun 1, 1994)
Burt Wolf's Table (Hardcover - Jul 1, 1994)
What's Cooking (Hardcover - Jan 1989)
What's Cooking with TV Food Reporter Burt Wolf (Paperback - 1989)
The Best of What's Cooking (Paperback - 1985)