Guest Star Spotlight: Impress the Press

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FNS7 Episode 1 Star Challenge at STK

FNS7 Episode 1 Star Challenge at STK

FNS7 Episode 1 Guest Celebrity Judge Mario Lopez talk to Selection Committee while waiting for Finalists to present dishes for Group Star Challenge meal at STK.

Photo by: Edward Chen/Creel Films ©2011, Television Food Network, G.P.

Edward Chen/Creel Films, 2011, Television Food Network, G.P.

"One of the most important aspects of a star's life is the press," said tough-guy Vic Vegas, sounding not-so-tough after learning who would be judging the first elimination challenge. "They make you or they break you."

FNS7 Episode 1 Star Challenge at STK

FNS7 Episode 1 Star Challenge at STK

FNS7 Episode 1 Guest Judges Alton Brown, Hal Rubenstein and Jess Cagle discuss Finalists presention with Selection Committee after Group Star Challenge meal at STK.

Photo by: Edward Chen/Creel Films ©2011, Television Food Network, G.P.

Edward Chen/Creel Films, 2011, Television Food Network, G.P.

When our finalists entered the dining room of STK to present for their Star Challenge, they faced an intimidating group of diners. Along with the heavy-hitters of the regular judges' panel ( Bob, Bobby, Susie and Giada), they stood before Good Eats superstar Alton Brown and three influential members of the press: Mario Lopez from Extra (some finalists might have gotten a little weak in the knees at the thought of presenting to AC Slater), Jess Cagle from Entertainment Weekly and Hal Rubenstein from InStyle.

Check out this exclusive behind-the-scenes video to hear our guest judges' advice for the finalists, plus their favorite comfort foods. It's too bad the Star contenders didn't have this inside scoop before the challenge — they could've won over Jess Cagle with carbs and Mario Lopez with Mexican food.

Check out Bobby's Instant Re-Flay, Giada's Take and more behind-the-scenes videos from the Food Network Star season premiere.

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