The sixth season of the critically acclaimed TrueSouth Presented by YellaWood debuts on Tuesday, Oct. 10 at 7 p.m. ET, highlighting Hot Springs, Ark. The series revolves around two food stories told from one place, which TrueSouth sets in conversation to make larger points about Southern beliefs and identities. Returning in season six is a special bonus episode with behind-the-scenes content and storytelling.
New this year, select episodes of TrueSouth are available on ESPN College Football’s YouTube channel, with all new episodes available on demand on SEC Network+ and ESPN+ immediately upon airing.
TrueSouth season six begins in a bathhouse in Hot Springs, Ark., an odd and endearing resort town tucked in the Ouachita Mountains, west of Little Rock. Mobsters once caroused here. Major league teams traveled here for spring training. Hot Springs began as a spa. Scalding hot water, pushing up through those mountains, still draws pilgrims.
To understand this city, we visit with actress Joey Lauren Adams, who recently moved home from California to Arkansas. She explains the town’s no-judgement attitude and introduces us to the pageant of characters who live and work here. Musical performances highlight local and regional artists: Willi Carlisle plays banjo and accordion on the streets; Sad Daddy records a live performance in the Venetian Dining Room at the Arlington Hotel.
Two restaurants anchor our story:
- The Pancake Shop, in downtown Hot Springs, opened in 1940. Owner Keeley DeSalvo has walked that room since she was six years old. Locals and tourists line up for buckwheat pancakes served with warm pitchers of syrup, whole hog sausage flavored with sage, and eggs scrambled with onions. They come to visit with beloved waitresses too, like folk hero Jayne Lakhani.
- Anthony Valinoti, proprietor of Deluca’s Pizza, came up in Brooklyn, N.Y., running the streets, buying slices at the corner pizza joint, eating ravioli at the table of his grandmother, matriarch of a sprawling Italian family. He went lost for a while. Valinoti found himself in Hot Springs, where he makes pizza worthy of his hometown and revels in a community that adopted him as their own.
Season six of TrueSouth begins Oct. 11 in the spa city of Hot Springs, Ark. The show continues Oct. 24 when we travel the Alabama Black Belt, southwest of Tuscaloosa, for pig tails and art. Join us in St. Augustine, Fla. for fried shrimp and a deep dive into the culture and cultivation of datil peppers. And Dublin, Ga., for tiny burgers and soul food and a look at what faith makes possible. Episode five, a behind-the-scenes road trip, returns, with stops for, among other eats, roasted oysters in Savannah, Ga.; ribeyes in Scott, Miss.; and gorditas in Little Rock, Ark.
Advance press screeners of TrueSouth: Season Six, Episode One are available upon request: [email protected]
TrueSouth is a limited series on Southern food and culture, airing biweekly on SEC Network. Four-time James Beard Award winner John T. Edge writes and hosts the show, which is executive produced by two-time New York Times best-selling author, ESPN senior writer Wright Thompson, and produced by Bluefoot Entertainment.
The series, now in its sixth season, revolves around two food stories told from one place, which TrueSouth sets in conversation to make larger points about Southern beliefs and identities. This season’s featured places are Hot Springs, Ark., the Alabama Black Belt, St. Augustine, Fla., Dublin, Ga., and a special behind-the-scenes finale to finish out season six. Seasons 1-5 of TrueSouth are available in their entirety on ESPN+.
Music plays an integral role in TrueSouth’s storytelling via on-screen performances and on-screen credits. TrueSouth playlist on Spotify shares the full soundtrack and score of every season of TrueSouth.
About SEC Network
The Southeastern Conference and ESPN launched SEC Network on August 14, 2014. The network televises hundreds of games across the SEC’s 21 sports annually. Programming includes in-depth analysis and storytelling in studio shows such as SEC Nation, Marty & McGee, Out Of Pocket, Read & React and Rally Cap, daily news and information with The Paul Finebaum Show and SEC Now, original content such as TrueSouth, SEC Storied and SEC Inside, and more. Hundreds of additional live events are available for streaming exclusively on SEC Network’s digital companion, SEC Network+, via the ESPN App and SECNetwork.com. Follow SEC Network on Instagram, TikTok, Facebook and Twitter/X.