Reality show begins filming at Aunt Chilada's restaurant

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By Tami Hoey By Tami Hoey

PHOENIX -- Reality TV has returned to the Valley. This time, the setting is one of the oldest and most colorful restaurants in the state: Aunt Chilada's.

Shooting started Monday on the new reality show, called "Aunt Chilada's: The Next Generation."  It's based on the four daughters of the restaurant's longtime owners.

Tiffany Allison, 35, Michele Woods, 43, Jennifer O'Brien, 44, and Tami Butcher, 46, are taking over the restaurant from their parents, Ken and Candice Nagel. And they're documenting the power shift with a show to air on soon-to-be-launched auntchiladas.tv.

The show is based on the fact that each of the four girls has a different idea for the concept of the restaurant. Tammy likes the idea of "Mexican chic." Jenny prefers a family-oriented twist. Michelle would like to see it banquet-driven. And Tiffany says she wants the restaurant to be a little "Coyote Ugly."

"Any one of them truthfully could run this restaurant and do a better job than me," laughs Ken Nagel. "The four of them together? I don't think they have a chance."

The sisters needed to recruit some cast members for their "slightly scripted" reality show, because not every staffer or customer will want to be on a TV show.

Reality TV star Billy Derian of Discovery's Rods and Wheels is in the driver's seat for the pilot.

"When I saw the camaraderie, the family business, the history of this joint, I knew this was going to a hit," he says.

In the 1800s, Aunt Chilada's was a notorious trading post, bar and brothel servicing the Dreamy Draw mercury miners, tourists and travelers. The Nagel family has run the restaurant in the historic building for the past 30 years.