You know he’s funny, and you know he can recommend great restaurants across the country, but did you know that John Catucci was once a popular children’s performer and that he misses home cooking when he’s on the road? Here are fun facts about the Big Food Bucket List host that you probably didn’t know.
John Catucci grew up in a foodie family
To put it more accurately, John Catucci grew up in an Italian family, which is another way of saying his childhood was spent eating delicious things. “I grew up in a house with incredible food,” he says.
John is crazy for bacon
“If I open up a restaurant it will just be bacon,” says John. “But not pork belly . . . just slices of bacon.” If that sounds too niche, think about it as hard as John has. “Cooking bacon is a pain in the ass. You don’t want your house and your clothes smelling like that, the splatter . . . I’ll cook it for you.”
John is serious about bowling
When filming You Gotta Eat Here!, the crew bowled a lot while on the road. John was getting sick of icky rental shoes so he told Toronto Life that he asked his wife to buy him a pair for Christmas. “They’ve made a huge difference,” he said, “but not to my score.”
John Catucci used to sing dirty songs for a living
“I did a lot of comedy for years with another guy named David Mesiano, and we were in a duo called the DooWops,” he says. “We just sang very dirty songs, very inappropriate non-family friendly songs.” The DooWops performed for around 13 years, touring Canada and the world, working with Second City and appearing on Just for Laughs.
He also performed in a band for kids
John, who is known for his work as Bus Driver Bob with kids’ band, the Doodlebops, also recorded the song Poopie Diaper with The Monkey Bunch. So maybe just a different kind of dirty.
His first industry job taught him a valuable lesson
When John was 14, he got a job at a restaurant called Villa Borghese (now named ViBo), where customer service was the number one priority. “It was banged into you, like hammered into you right away,” he says. “And that’s what I realize today – that a great meal can be made even better with great service, and then a mediocre meal can be saved by great service. And a great meal can be ruined by customer service. You can have everything be incredible but if you have bad service you’re never going to go back.”
John Catucci is the king of plaid
Pop quiz! When’s the last time you saw John Catucci wearing anything but plaid? He loves the pattern so much, he owns plaid cufflinks, telling Toronto Life magazine they help his signature look shine through whenever he has to wear a suit.