No, this is not a wet dream. Bravo has announced that the network will premiere Top Chef Masters, a cooking challenge TV show series, on Wednesday, June 10 at 10 p.m. (PST). The 24 contestants include entrants from some of the most admired culinary brands in the United States.
These chefs are not here to make a name for themselves (they already have that), they're competing for bragging rights. And I hope they fight rough. The taste of ears should not be a foreign flavor to this bunch.
A star-studded lineup of guest judges include actors (Neil Patrick Harris - note to chefs: this dude likes miniature sliders, Zooey Deschanel), TV writers and producers (from "Lost," don't ask), food critics, food magazine editors and previous "Top Chef" winners. Tom Colicchio, Padma Lakshmi and Gail Simmons will also appear.
Some really tall, really thin, mildly hot Korean chick, I mean, lady, I mean, "food journalist" Kelly Choi
will host. She's been hosting local NYC food shows "Eat Out New York" and "Secrets of New York."
At least she's not a total bore on film.
With the large number of competitors, producers have tweaked the format of the original series.
Per Bravo's press release -- "In each episode, money will be at stake for the chefs, with the winners of eliminations being awarded cash donations for their charities. The first six episodes will consist of four chefs competing against each other to name one winner. The six winners of each episode will then meet up for the final four weeks when one person will get eliminated each episode until the finale where one winner is crowned Top Chef Master. The winning chef will receive $100,000 for the charity of his or her choice."
The following are the 24 contestants competing (hometown chefs in bold):
- Rick Bayless – Frontera Grill, Chicago
- Wilo Benet – Pikayo, San Juan, Puerto Rico
- John Besh – Restaurant August, New Orleans
- Graham Elliot Bowles – Graham Elliot Restaurant, Chicago
- Michael Chiarello – Bottega Restaurant, Yountville, Calif.
- Michael Cimarusti – Providence, Los Angeles
- Wylie Dufresne – wd~50, New York
- Elizabeth Falkner – Orson, San Francisco
- Hubert Keller – Fleur de Lys, San Francisco
- Christopher Lee – Aureole, New York
- Ludo Lefebvre – Ludo Bites, Los Angeles
- Anita Lo – Annisa, New York
- Tim Love – The Lonesome Dove Western Bistro, Fort Worth, Texas
- Rick Moonen – Rick Moonen's RM Seafood at Mandalay Bay, Las Vegas
- Nils Noren – French Culinary Institute, New York
- Lachlan MacKinnon-Patterson – Frasca Food & Wine, Boulder, Colo.
- Cindy Pawlcyn – Mustards Grill, Napa Valley, Calif.
- Mark Peel – Campanile, Los Angeles
- Douglas Rodriguez – Alma de Cuba, Philadelphia
- Michael Schlow – Radius Restaurant, Boston
- Art Smith – Table Fifty-Two, Chicago
- Suzanne Tracht – Jar, Los Angeles
- Jonathan Waxman – Barbuto, New York
- Roy Yamaguchi – Roy's Restaurants, San Diego
[ via: LA Times