Cheers to Love & Food
Nikki Turner (Jen Lilley) is a talented chef, the trouble is she has never managed to get the break to prove it, struggling to find work whilst dreaming of owning her own restaurant one day. When she lands a job in the kitchen of her idol Holly Hanson (Peri Gilpin) it seems that Nikki's luck may have finally changed especially when after a rocky start she ends up befriending executive chef Paul Dellucci (Brendan Penny). When Nikki discovers that Holly is unscrupulously stealing her recipes and passing them off as her own it leads to not just Nikki getting fired but also Paul as Holly fears they will show her up to be a fraud. But together these new friends strike out on their own with their own pop up restaurant.
I have to hand it to the people who make Hallmark movies because they know exactly what their movies are about, they know what their audience like, and they know how to take a familiar set up and still keep it entertaining. Take "A Dash of Love" which serves up the familiar theme of love in the kitchen and as such not only does that immediately conjure up images of romance over a plate of pasta but being a Hallmark movie you of course know where it is going to end up with Nikki and Paul ending up in love and both doing what they enjoy doing, which is cooking.
But as I said the people who make these Hallmark movies know their product and their audience and as such you have the enjoyable casting of Peri Gilpin as the villain of the movie as Gilpin has this wonderfully pushy but humorous nature. But we also have an extra twist when it comes to Paul Dellucci, the sort of twist which is quite common in a Hallmark movie but is one of those pleasant additions which make you smile. And of course when you have Jen Lilley and Brendan Penny together they deliver that slice of Hallmark romantic cuteness which the older I get the more I enjoy.
What this all boils down to is that "A Dash of Love" is a pretty stereotypical Hallmark movie which serves up the familiar when it comes to romance in the kitchen. But as always through the right casting and a couple of enjoyable amendments "A Dash of Love" ends up an enjoyable distraction for fans of Hallmark's particular brand of romance.