Thursday, April 30, 2009

TC News & Information

Poor Toby Young's was hit by a car the other day and now has a head-full of nasty stitches. Info and pic links are here.

TC Masters competitor Lachlan MacKinnon Patterson is a fan of the Denver Broncos.

Did anyone get a chance to participate in TC Masters' Art Smith's Free Lunch last week?

Ann Arbor District Library did an interview with Season 4 winner Stephanie Izard. You can listen to the podcast here.

Check out the conversation between Padma Lakshmi and Ben Stein.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Top Chef Six....

...will also be known as Top Chef Las Vegas!

What do you think about the next season being filmed in Sin City?

Monday, April 27, 2009

TC Video du Jour

TC Masters Cheftestant Hubert Keller shows us how to make a burger. Love zat Frawnch accent! hon hon hon!

Friday, April 24, 2009

TC News & Information

Padma Lakshmi co-hosted the Blossom Ball benefit for endometriosis on April 20th.

Tampa Bay Online has a podcast interview with Stefan Richter...

...and Sauce Magazine blog talks about Top Chef: The Tour with Season 3's Dale Levitski.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

TC News & Information

Padma was on the Today show yesterday, talking about some recent sexy projects she's been working on.
And Tom is "so over" banh mi. Hmpf! Good for him. Some of us still haven't gotten enough of this Vietnamese sandwich.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Monday, April 20, 2009

TC News & Information

Toby Young will be back next season...which will be filmed in...Vegas?

According to this, Richard Blais just shot a few webisodes for McCormick.

Tom Colicchio was on Charlie Rose recently....

Here's an article about Jason Agate, who really wants to be a Cheftestant.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

TC Video du Jour

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Burgers Aren't the Only Thing Padma Likes Thick....

Thick HAIR! She likes thick hair! Sheesh. Get your mind out of the gutter!

Padma is now hawking Pantene. Read about it here. (And for fun, read this wacky translation of the same article! According to it, Padma is "respiration blistering at 38!")

Oh, and here's the commercial. And I liked to think she owed her glossy mane to traditional Indian hair treatments, like neem, coconut oil, amla....

Interview with Fabio Viviani

Part one of a terrific interview with Fabio Viviano was posted on Minxeats today. Click here for part two.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

TC News & Information

Here are some nice pics of Top Chef alums and guest judges from Food & Wine Magazine's best new chefs of 2009 event.

Season 4 champ Stephanie Izard will be at the 2009 Restaurant Hotel-Motel Show in Chicago, May 16-19.

How about a cooking lesson from Season 2 cutie Sam Talbot? Ok, how about a video of a cooking lesson from him?

Season 1 finalist Dave Martin has left Crave and headed to Vynl.

And...according to a press release I got this morning, Season 2's Marisa Churchill is now the executive chef of specialty food producer G.L. Mezzetta

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Bio - Roy Yamaguchi

Born and raised in Tokyo, Japan, Roy Yamaguchi moved to the U.S. to attend the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, N.Y. After graduating, his devotion to French cooking was nurtured further in southern California, where he signed on for an apprenticeship at L'Escoffier, followed by one at L'Ermitage under the late master chef Jean Bertanou. He worked his way up to chef status with stints at Le Serene and Le Gourmet. In 1984, Chef Yamaguchi finally opened his first restaurant as an owner, 385 North on Hollywood's La Cienega. This is where the Yamaguchi cooking style, described by Bon Appetit as "California-French-Japanese-eclectic," first came into bloom. After dissolving his L.A. partnership in early 1988, he uprooted his young family in order to renew his acquaintance with Hawaii, settling into the eastern side of Honolulu known as Hawaii Kai. The opening of Yamaguchi's restaurant, Roy’s, did not go unnoticed. Within months Food & Wine dubbed it "the crown jewel of Honolulu's East-West eateries." It was virtually the only one of its type in the early years. Today there are 37 Roy’s worldwide. He boasts the honor of being the first Hawaiian restaurateur to win the prestigious James Beard Award. Yamaguchi has appeared on Iron Chef, is the author of four cookbooks, and hosted the cooking show Hawaii Cooks.

Bio - Graham Elliot Bowles

Having started his culinary education at Johnson and Wales University, Graham Elliot Bowles began his career by working at The Mansion on Turtle Creek, a five diamond/five-star property located in Dallas, Texas. This was followed by a move to Chicago where Bowles had the opportunity to work at the famed restaurant Charlie Trotters for a total of three years, as well as work alongside Chefs Rick Tramonto and Gale Gand as the Chef de Cuisine of Tru. A stint at The Jackson House Inn & Restaurant in Woodstock, Vermont earned him a spot as one of Food & Wine Magazine's Best New Chefs of 2004. This opened the doors for Bowles’to return to Chicago to become Chef de Cuisine of Avenues at The Peninsula Hotel. During his four years leading the kitchen, he became the nations youngest four-star chef with perfect reviews from Chicago Magazine, Chicago Sun-Times and Chicago Tribune, as well as three James Beard award nominations. Bowles has since gone on to open Graham Elliot in Chicago, a "bistronomic" restaurant combining four-star cuisine with humor and accessibility.

Bio - Wilo Benet

A graduate of the Culinary Institute of America, Wilo Benet honed his craft in several New York City restaurants such as Maurice, Le Bernardin and the Water Club. Benet was called in upon in 1988 to become Chef de Cuisine of “La Fortaleza,” the Governor of Puerto Rico’s Mansion. After two years, he opened his flagship restaurant, Pikayo, which is now located at the Puerto Rico Museum of Art in San Juan and specializes in timeless classics. In 2004, Benet opened Payá, his creole fusion restaurant and last month opened his third gastronomic scenario, Varita, which features comfort foods from Puerto Rico. Last year he wrote, Puerto Rico True Flavors, which won “Best Cookbook in English & Spanish” at the 10th Annual International Latino Book Awards during Book Expo America.

Bio - Art Smith

Well known for being Oprah Winfrey's long time personal chef, Art Smith is the co-owner of the successful restaurant TABLE fifty-two in Chicago, as well as Art and Soul restaurant in Washington DC. He has published three award winning cookbooks and has a fourth on the way – all of which concentrate on home cooking and family life. Smith and Jesus Salgueiro are the founders of the non-profit charity “Common Threads” which focuses on teaching children about different cultures through food and art. In 2007 he received the Humanitarian of the year award from the James Beard Foundation.

Bio - Suzanne Tracht

Suzanne Tracht is on top of the culinary world as Executive Chef and Owner of two distinct California restaurants – Jar, a modern chophouse in the center of Los Angeles and Tracht’s, which features retro Americana cuisine in Long Beach. Hailing from Phoenix, Arizona, Tracht’s culinary journey began as a teen when she took a three-year apprenticeship under Siegbert Wendler, renowned chef at the Arizona Biltmore Resort and Spa. She moved to Southern California to continue her education in the kitchen of Hotel Bel-Air and then served as sous-chef at Noa Noa. Her move to Campanile in 1992 placed her on the map, and she was soon named the restaurant’s Chef de Cuisine. Tracht launched her first solo venture in 1996 as Executive Chef at Jozu, a highly praised Cal-Asian restaurant that helped her develop a devoted following. She opened Jar in 2001and has been recognized nationally, including a spot among Food and Wine magazine’s Best New Chefs in 2002, national appearances on the Today Show, Food Network and Extra and induction into the Fine Dining Hall of Fame by Nation’s Restaurant News in May 2007. Her newest concept, Suzpree, a modern oyster bar and noodle house, is scheduled to open in Los Angeles in 2010.

Bio - Michael Schlow

It’s an understatement to say that Michael Schlow has a passion for food. He began his culinary journey when he traded a baseball scholarship and a 92 mile-an-hour fastball for a set of Wusthof knives and a place at the Academy of Culinary Arts in New Jersey. In 2000, Schlow won the James Beard Award for “Best Chef in the Northeast” and his restaurant Radius in Boston was named “Best New Restaurant” by Food & Wine. His favorite chefs are Craig Shelton, Jean Louis Palladin, and Joel Robuchon. Schlow authored a cookbook in 2005 called It’s About Time, is a regular contributor to culinary publications and has appeared on numerous national cooking shows.

Bio - Lachlan Mackinnon Patterson

Lachlan Mackinnon Patterson began his celebrated culinary career at the Old Warson Country Club in St. Louis, Missouri. In 1999, he moved to Paris to obtain his Certificate d'Aptitude Professionnelle at the renowned Ecole Gregoire-Ferrandi. He then went on to apprentice under Benoit Guichard at the famed Jamin, a two-star Michelin restaurant praised for its classic French cuisine. Mackinnon Patterson continued to hone his culinary skills working under owner and chef Guy Guilloux at La Taupiniere in Pont Aven, Brittany. After moving back to the U.S. in 2001, he worked at the celebrated The French Laundry in Yountville, California. It was there that he met his current business partner, Master Sommelier Bobby Stuckey. Stuckey and Mackinnon Patterson own Frasca Food and Wine in Boulder, Colorado, with cuisine inspired by the Friuli-Venezia Giulia region of northeast Italy. Mackinnon Patterson’s food is heralded by many as the best in Colorado, and he’s got the awards to prove it. He was named one of Food & Wine Magazine’s Best New Chefs in July 2005 and won 2008 Best Chef: Southwest from the James Beard Foundation.

Bio - Nils Noren

Sweden native Nils Noren attended his hometown Culinary School in Gavle before developing culinary expertise in several of Stockholm’s finest restaurants, including Restaurant Riche and Restaurant KB. He moved to the United States to accept a position at New York’s Aquavit, working as chef de cuisine alongside Marcus Samuelsson before being promoted to executive chef in 2003. Noren currently serves as Vice President of Culinary Arts for The French Culinary Institute’s culinary, pastry, bread and Italian food departments. In a 2008 survey of 40 top New York chefs, Noren was voted "The chef that should have gotten an award by now, but hasn't."

Bio - Rick Bayless

A Chicago based chef, award-winning author and restaurateur, Rick Bayless has received accolades ranging from "Best Chef of 1988" by Food & Wine and "Best American Chef: Midwest" from the James Beard Foundation. His first restaurant, which opened in 1987, is the colorful, vivacious Frontera Grill located in Chicago that specializes in Mexican cooking. In 2007, Frontera took home the coveted "Outstanding Restaurant" award by the James Beard Foundation. His second project, Topolobampo, which opened in 1989, is also a 4-star fine-dining Mexican restaurant. Bayless has appeared in a number of television shows including The Today Show, Good Morning America and Martha Stewart Living. In addition to his appearances, he has contributed to Saveur and written for Food & Wine, Martha Stewart Living, Fine Cooking and Travel & Leisure. Bayless's own show; PBS's Mexico One Plate at a Time is now in its 7th season.

Bio - Johnathan Waxman

Working as a successful chef, restaurateur and author, Jonathan Waxman has graced such prestigious kitchens as Chez Panisse in Berkeley and Michael’s in Los Angeles. Waxman went on to open his own restaurant in New York City – Jams, as well as the famed Washington Park. Today, Waxman is the chef and owner of Barbuto in Manhattan's West Village. His first cookbook, A Great American Cook, was published in 2007. Giving back is important to Waxman and he works closely with many charities including City Meals on Wheels. He currently lives in Manhattan with his wife and three children.

Bio - Ludo Lefebvre

After training in Paris for 13 years at Restaurant L’Esperance with Marc Meneau, Restaurant Pierre Gagnaire, Arpege with Alain Passard and Le Grande Vefour with Guy Martin, Lefebvre moved to Los Angeles to work at L’Orangerie. He was promoted to head chef at the age of 25 and made L’Orangerie one of the top-rated restaurants in California, receiving the Mobil Five Star Award. Lefebvre then moved on to Bastide where he also received the prestigious Mobil Five Star Award. Lefebvre was a nominee for the James Beard Foundation “Rising Chef Award” in 2001 and released his first cookbook, "CRAVE, a Feast of the Five Senses" in 2005. Lefebvre recently was tapped by the Tao Group to create the menu for LAVO in Las Vegas and is now back in Los Angeles to open Ludo Bites in the Spring of 2009. He currently resides in California with his wife, Kristine.

Bio - John Besh

John Besh is the executive chef and co-owner of the Besh Restaurant Group based in New Orleans. His collection of restaurants include August, featured twice on Gourmet Magazine’s list of “Best Restaurants in the U.S.,” La Provence, Lüke, and Besh Steak. His first solo-authored cookbook will make its way to the stores this fall 2009. He has been honored with a number of awards such as Food & Wine's “Ten Best New Chefs” in America in 1999, “Best Chef in the Southeast” by the James Beard Foundation in 2006, and the Sundance Iconoclasts series featured him in 2007 as a creative visionary whose passion helped transform a culture.

Bio - Douglas Rodriguez

Douglas Rodriguez started his culinary studies at Johnson and Wales University in Providence, Rhode Island. Rodriguez is well known for being the "Godfather" of Latin Cuisine and coining the phrase “Nuevo Latino” in his first book in 1997. As Chef/Founder of Patria Restaurant, he received a 3-star review in The New York Times. James Beard Award Winner for “Rising Star Chef” in 1996, Rodriguez currently has Alma De Cuba in Philadelphia, Deseo in Scottsdale, Arizona and OLA Miami in South Beach. In 2003, he moved back to Miami to Open OLA Restaurant. Rodriguez is currently nominated for "Best Chef South Region" for the 2009 James Beard Awards.

Bio - Michael Chiarello

Michael Chiarello is the acclaimed Napa Valley chef/owner of Bottega Restaurant, as well as award-winning author, Emmy-winning host of "Easy Entertaining with Michael Chiarello," and tastemaker behind NapaStyle, a specialty brand of foods and handcrafted products. A graduate of the Culinary Institute of America, Chiarello’s knowledge of cooking began at an early age in the home of his Italian family. He was honored as “Chef of the Year” by Food and Wine Magazine at age 23, and again while at his iconic Napa Valley restaurant, Tra Vigne, in the mid-80’s. He is the host of numerous shows on PBS, Fine Living and Food Network. He is also the proprietor of Chiarello Family Vineyards, making small production, highly rated red wines from his vineyards in the Napa Valley. He has cooked and entertained thousands, including former first lady Hillary Rodham Clinton, Oprah Winfrey, and the sous-chef to the Dalai Lama. Chiarello incorporates his personal passion for living seasonally and sustainably into his businesses—from the purveyors he supports as a chef/restaurateur, to the products he designs for NapaStyle, to the earth-friendly farming he employs at Chiarello Family Vineyards.

Bio - Mark Peel

In college, Mark landed a job peeling vegetables for Wolfgang Puck at Ma Maison. He eventually worked his way up to poissonier before moving to France for stints at La Tour d’Argent and Le Moulin de Mougins. In 1979, he returned to Los Angeles and began working at Michael’s Restaurant. From there he moved north to Alice Waters’ Chez Panisse and, finally, back to Los Angeles to open the original Spago as Wolfgang Puck’s chef de cuisine. In 1989, he opened both La Brea Bakery and Campanile with business partners Nancy Silverton and Manfred Krankl. He has co-authored several books, including Mark Peel & Nancy Silverton At Home: Two Chefs Cook for Family and Friends and The Food of Campanile, both with former wife and ex-partner Nancy Silverton. New Family Classic Dinners, his new cookbook, is due to be released October 2009. His newest project, Glass and Mirrors, a classic bar and restaurant featuring hand-crafted cocktails, is due to open in Hollywood in late 2009. Mark has five children and is married to television host and comedienne Daphne Brogdon.

Bio - Wylie Dufresne

Wylie Dufresne is the chef/owner of New York’s highly celebrated wd~50 restaurant. The Lower East Side eatery was awarded a Michelin star in 2006, which it has retained through 2009. Dufresne himself is no stranger to acclaim. The James Beard Foundation nominated Wylie and wd~50 in the following categories: 2000, "Rising Star Chef" (while Wylie was the chef at 71 Clinton Fresh Food); 2004, wd~50 for "Best New Restaurant;" 2008 and 2009, Wylie for "Best Chef, New York City." wd~50, whose ownership is shared with chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten and restaurateur Phil Suarez, acquired its unique name from the combination of Dufresne’s initials and the restaurant’s street address.

Bio - Elizabeth Falkner

Elizabeth Falkner obtained her degree from the San Francisco Art Institute in the hopes of pursuing a career in film. She changed her mind dramatically after she began working in the food industry. She started as a pastry chef at some of San Francisco’s most renowned restaurants including Masa’s, Elka and Rubicon which resulted in opening her own dessert restaurant. Cinematically inspired, Citizen Cake boasts “a cake for every citizen.” She is currently Executive Chef and Owner of both Citizen Cake and Orson restaurants in San Francisco. Faulkner has been featured in numerous publications such as Food & Wine, Gourmet, Pastry Art & Design and W. She has received many awards for her work with pastries, including “Pastry Chef of the Year” from San Francisco magazine, a James Beard Award Pastry Chef nomination in 2005 and Bon Appetit Pastry Chef of the Year in 2006.

Bio - Michael Cimarusti

After graduating with honors in 1990 from the Culinary Institute of America, Michael Cimarusti got his start in the Big Apple working with celebrated chef Larry Forigone at An American Place. Cimarusti moved to Bucks County, Pennsylvania where he was appointed chef de cuisine at The Forager House Restaurant, but soon migrated back to Manhattan. After a three-year run at Le Cirque where he worked with Paul Bocuse, Gerard Boyer, and Roger Vergé, Cimarusti moved to France to expand his culinary education at La Marée and Arpege. Back in New York, he became opening chef for Le Cirque’s new venture, Osteria Del Circo. Cimarusti went on to become chef de cuisine at the original Spago in Hollywood and went on to run the show as executive chef of Water Grill. He is currently Owner and Chef of Providence Restaurant in Los Angeles.

Bio - Hubert Keller

Born in Alsace, France, Hubert Keller is one of Americas most acclaimed chefs, known best for his world-renowned restaurants, Fleur de Lys (San Francisco and Las Vegas), the Burger Bar (Las Vegas, St. Louis and soon to open in San Francisco) and his latest venture, SLeeK Steakhouse and Ultra Lounge (St. Louis). Having caught the eyes, ears and palates of top food writers, Keller is the recipient of numerous awards including the James Beard Foundation’s lifetime achievement award of “Who’s Who” in the industry. His influence extends beyond his restaurant kitchen to the millions of people he reaches through his cookbooks and TV show, Secrets of a Chef. A graduate of Ecole Hoteliere in Strasbourg, Keller started as a pastry chef and honed his culinary skills by working with master chef’s such as Paul Haeberlin, Roger Verge, Paul Bocuse, Jacques Maximin and Gaston Lenotre. Ranked as one of the “10 Best New Chefs in America” by Food & Wine in 1988. He was the first guest chef at the White House, where he prepared a gourmet dinner for President Clinton and his family. He now resides in San Francisco.

Bio - Anita Lo

Anita Lo is the chef and owner of the successful New York restaurant Annisa and serves as consulting chef for Rickshaw Dumpling Bar. Lo comes from a second generation Chinese-American family that fostered her passion for eating and cooking. While earning a degree in French at Columbia University, she studied at Reid Hall – Columbia's French language institute in Paris and decided to return to Paris to study cooking. She received her degree at the prestigious Ecole Ritz-Escoffier. Back in New York, Lo worked her way through all the stations at David Waltuck’s Chanterelle and became known as a contemporary American chef during her time at Mirezi in New York, where she won rave reviews including a glowing 2-star write up from The New York Times.

Bio - Rick Moonen

From 1994 to 2005, Moonen earned 3 stars from the New York Times for his work at Oceana, Molyvos, and RM in New York City. Moonen was the executive chef at the Water Club and his passion and vocalization of sustainable seafood practices led him to publish Fish Without a Doubt in 2008. Sensitive to consumers’ home cooking needs, the cookbook is intended to serve as inspiration to chefs for their cooking choices. In February 2005, Chef Moonen opened his multi-level restaurant Rick RM Seafood at Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas.

Bio - Cindy Pawlcyn

Cindy Pawlcyn is widely recognized as a pioneer of wine country cooking and one of the first proponents of the farm to table philosophy. Pawlcyn began cooking at the tender age of 13-years-old, and through college and self-study was able to work alongside the likes of James Beard and Julia Child. Pawlcyn is the author of four widely acclaimed cookbooks – The Fog City Diner Cookbook, Mustards Grill Napa Valley Cookbook, Big Small Plates, and her newest, Cindy Pawlcyn’s Appetizers. She is also the executive chef and owner of three Napa Valley restaurants – Cindy’s Backstreet Kitchen, Go Fish, and Mustards Grill each of which uses her extensive kitchen gardens.

Bio - Christopher Lee

Chef Christopher Lee broke into the culinary world at the early age of fifteen. After working at various restaurants throughout college, Lee moved to San Francisco and attended the California Culinary Academy. After graduating, Lee relocated to the east coast where he worked at New York’s Jean-Georges and Daniel, and also served as chef de cuisine at Oceana under Neil Gallagher. At Philadelphia’s The Striped Bass, he acted as chef de cuisine under Alfred Portale and later became executive chef. Upon his return to New York City, Lee spent two years at Gilt where he earned the restaurant two Michelin stars. Chef Lee currently runs the kitchen at Aureole in New York, where his cuisine fuses high-concept thought and flavor pairing with a respect for purity and seasonality, always with the diner in mind.

Bio - Tim Love

Travel to Tim Love’s The Lonesome Dove Western Bistro in Fort Worth, Texas and you’ll find him donning a cowboy hat instead of a chef’s toque. Love is best known for his urban spin on traditional western dishes and has put Fort Worth on the national culinary map.

Bio - TC Masters Judge James Oseland

James Oseland has been the editor-in-chief of Saveur magazine since 2006. Prior to that, he was the magazine’s executive editor. He has also been an editor at Vogue, Organic Style, Sassy, and Mademoiselle. In 2006 his book, Cradle of Flavor: Home Cooking from the Spice Islands of Indonesia, Malaysia, and Singapore, was published and went on to win awards from the James Beard Foundation and the International Association of Culinary Professionals and was named one of the best books of that year by Time Asia, the New York Times, Good Morning America, the San Francisco Chronicle, the San Jose Mercury News, the Minneapolis Star-Tribune, and others.

Oseland has appeared on the Today Show and as a judge on Iron Chef America, and is a regular guest on radio programs, including The Splendid Table. He has lectured on a variety of culinary topics at the Asia Society, the Abergavenny Food Festival in Wales, Slow Food Nation, and the Culinary Institute of America’s Worlds of Flavor conference. Before becoming a journalist, Oseland wrote, ghostwrote and acted in numerous films, including Guncrazy (starring Drew Barrymore).

Oseland holds a BFA and MFA in photography and film studies from the San Francisco Art Institute. A California native, he has lived in India and Indonesia and now calls Williamsburg, Brooklyn home.

Bio - TC Masters Judge Jay Rayner

Jay Rayner is a British journalist, writer and broadcaster who has written for a wide range of British newspapers and magazines such as GQ, Esquire, Cosmopolitan, The New Statesman and Granta. After graduating from Leeds University in 1988, he joined The Observer newspaper for whom he now reviews restaurants. In 2006 he was named Critic Of The Year in the British Press Awards.

His first novel, The Marble Kiss, was shortlisted for the Author's Club of Great Britain First Novel Award and his second, Day of Atonement published in 1998, for the Jewish Quarterly Prize for Fiction. He is also the author of the novels The Apologist, (known in the US as Eating Crow) and The Oyster House Siege, as well as the non-fiction work Stardust Falling. He won a Sony Radio Award in 1997 for "Papertalk," BBC Radio Five Live's magazine program about the newspaper business.

He regularly appears as one of the food critics on Masterchef, and was on the panel of critics who made up the "enemy" on the daytime cooking show Eating with the Enemy. Most recently, Rayner came out with The Man Who Ate the World, a tour of the world's greatest restaurant cities and his search for the perfect meal. The paperback edition will be published this summer.

Bio - TC Masters Judge Gael Greene

As New York Magazine's famed restaurant critic for over 30 years and the Insatiable Critic Columnist, Gael Greene has gone to great lengths to conceal her identity so that no restaurateurs can identify her. A best-selling author, Greene has written Everything You Always Wanted To Know About Ice Cream But Were Too Fat To Ask, The Mafia Guide to Dining Out and Nobody Knows the Truffles I've Seen.

Greene often documents her global travels with photographs by the professional street photographer, Steven Richter. Their work has appeared in magazines that include Travel & Leisure, Food & Wine, Diversions, Departures and Food Arts.

She co-founded Citymeals-on-Wheels with James Beard and remains a continuing force serving as board chair. Greene has made a significant impact on the city of New York through her work with the organization, rallying food world peers to make a commitment to help feed the city's homebound elderly, and devoting as many hours to fund-raising in recent years as she does to writing. Citymeals, the largest public/private partnership in the country, has raised $150 million in its twenty –four year history to help feed the city's frail elderly shut-ins. For her work with Citymeals, Greene has received numerous awards and was honored as the Humanitarian of the Year (l992) by the James Beard Foundation. She is the winner of the International Association of Cooking Professionals magazine writing award, 2000, and received a Silver Spoon from Food Arts magazine.

Greene's memoir, Insatiable, Tales from a Life of Delicious Excess, was published in April 2006. Earlier non-fiction books include Delicious Sex, A Gourmet Guide for Women and the Men Who Want to Love Them Better and BITE: A New York Restaurant Strategy. Her two novels, Blue skies, No Candy and Doctor Love were New York Times best sellers.

Bio - TC Masters Host Kelly Choi

Kelly Choi is an acclaimed food journalist and creator, producer and host of NYC TV's weekly restaurant show Eat Out NY. A former model, Choi recently finished her first book The 20 Most Delicious Dishes in New York, which is set to hit stores in spring of 2009.

As producer and host of Eat Out NY, Choi chooses every restaurant featured on the program, then ventures to the back of the house – the kitchen – to prepare a dish with the chef. She is also host of the nationally syndicated and Emmy award-winning Secrets of New York, a weekly show that reveals little-known facts and mysteries about Manhattan. Topics include secrets of the city's subway system, skyscrapers, sewers, and even jails.

Choi has been a judge on Iron Chef America, and has received multiple Emmy nominations from the New York chapter of the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences for her work on NYC TV. Born in Seoul, Korea, Choi won the Elite Modeling Agency’s “Look of the Year” contest, and has been voted as "One of the Sexiest New Yorkers" by the New York Post. She has a Masters degree in magazine writing from Columbia University's Graduate School of Journalism.

Announcing Top Chef Masters!


24 World-Renowned Competing Chefs Revealed Along
With Guest Stars Neil Patrick Harris, Zooey Deschanel, Morgan Spurlock, And For The First Time Together All "Top Chef" Winners

NEW YORK – April 7, 2009 – Calling all foodies…it's time to salivate! "Top Chef Masters," the spin-off series of the Emmy and James Beard Award-winning No. 1 food show on cable, "Top Chef," will premiere on Wednesday, June 10 at 10 p.m. ET/PT. The judges' table has finally turned – and we'll see what happens when these top chefs are now on the other side. "Top Chef Masters" will pit 24 world-renowned chefs against each other and see how well they fare in the tried and true format of "Top Chef." 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 their choice.

“Top Chef Masters” will feature guest stars and judges Neil Patrick Harris, Zooey Deschanel, "Lost" writers and executive producers Carlton Cuse and Damon Lindelof, “Flipping Out’s” Jeff Lewis, and for the first time, all past "Top Chef" winners will be together during an episode. The series will also showcase chef'testant fan favorites as well as appearances by “Top Chef’s” Tom Colicchio, Padma Lakshmi and Gail Simmons.

"On 'Top Chef,' the biggest names in the industry join us as guests to pass judgment on the chef'testants,” said Dan Cutforth, Executive Producer, Magical Elves. "Now we'll get to see how they handle equally tough challenges."

"We are thrilled to have such an amazing line up of celebrated chefs putting their reputations on the line for their charities,” said Jane Lipsitz, Executive Producer, Magical Elves. "'Top Chef Masters' will take the kitchen competition to the next level."

To meet the cast of "Top Chef Masters," visit Photography and bios are available at

Following are the 24 "Top Chef Masters" competing chefs:

 Rick Bayless – Frontera Grill, Chicago, Ill.
 Wilo Benet – Pikayo, San Juan, Puerto Rico
 John Besh – Restaurant August, New Orleans, LA
 Graham Elliot Bowles – Graham Elliot Restaurant, Chicago, Ill.
 Michael Chiarello – Bottega Restaurant, Yountville, Calif.
 Michael Cimarusti – Providence, Los Angeles, Calif.
 Wylie Dufresne – wd~50, New York, N.Y.
 Elizabeth Falkner – Orson, San Francisco, Calif.
 Hubert Keller – Fleur de Lys, San Francisco, Calif.
 Christopher Lee – Aureole, New York, N.Y.
 Ludo Lefebvre – Ludo Bites, Los Angeles, Calif.
 Anita Lo – Annisa, New York, N.Y.
 Tim Love – The Lonesome Dove Western Bistro, Fort Worth, Texas
 Rick Moonen – Rick Moonen’s RM Seafood at Mandalay Bay, Las Vegas, Nev.
 Nils Noren – French Culinary Institute, New York, N.Y.
 Lachlan McKinnon Patterson – Frasca Food & Wine, Boulder, Colo.
 Cindy Pawlcyn – Mustards Grill, Napa Valley, Calif.
 Mark Peel – Campanile, Los Angeles, Calif.
 Douglas Rodriguez – Alma de Cuba, Philadelphia, PA
 Michael Schlow – Radius Restaurant, Boston, Mass.
 Art Smith – Table Fifty-Two, Chicago, Ill.
 Suzanne Tracht – Jar, Los Angeles, Calif.
 Jonathan Waxman – Barbuto, New York, N.Y.
 Roy Yamaguchi – Roy's Restaurants, San Diego, Calif.

Kelly Choi, food journalist and creator, producer and host of NYC TV's weekly restaurant show "Eat Out NY," will host this highly competitive spin-off uniting some of the brightest stars in the world of food, showcasing the often cutthroat world of the culinary arts. A former model, Choi recently finished her book called "The 20 Most Delicious Dishes in New York," which is set to hit stores in spring of 2009.

Joining the judges' panel is Gael Greene, New York Magazine's famed restaurant critic for over 40 years, a best-selling author and co-founder of Citymeals-on-Wheels, which provides food to the homebound elderly. James Oseland, culinary expert and Editor-in-Chief of Saveur magazine, and British journalist, writer and broadcaster Jay Rayner, will also serve as regular judges for the series.

Each episode of "Top Chef Masters" holds two challenges for the chefs. The first is a twist on the classic "Top Chef" quickfire challenge which tests their basic abilities – for example in season 2 of "Top Chef" where the chef'testants had to create an amuse bouche out of items from a vending machine. Each quickfire challenge will be judged by a blind taste test and a five-star system, similar to fine dining reviews.

The second challenge is a more involved elimination challenge designed to test the versatility and invention of the chefs as they take on unique culinary trials such as working with unusual and exotic foods or catering for demanding clients. The food will be tasted and evaluated by the judges and a wide range of tasters for whom the challenge is aimed, whether it is patrons at a five-star restaurant or a room full of hungry kids – the food has to appeal to the diner as well as the critics if the chef is to survive.

This season, will host a "Top Chef Masters" B-Hive sponsored by Stacy’s® Pita Chips where viewers can host weekly viewing parties for their fellow food-obsessed friends, including provided party kits, game ideas, and more! Fans can also visit the site weekly to find out how to make each winning dish through video demonstrations. Visitors will be able to watch interviews of the eliminated chefs and the winning chefs of each challenge. The tables turn with "Rate the Plate," where the user can determine which dishes were the best each week. Also, fans can play "Memory Match" and test their foodie and chef knowledge with our challenging — and addictive — IQ quizzes. Television Without Pity ( will recap each episode in their signature snarky tone.

"Top Chef Masters" fans can visit from their web-enabled phone for exclusive content including trivia games, video and behind-the-scenes dish. Viewers will also be able to voice their opinion each week with live voting and later share their vote with Facebook friends on

"Top Chef Masters" is produced by the Emmy-nominated Magical Elves. Dan Cutforth, Jane Lipsitz and Shauna Minoprio serve as executive producers. "Top Chef" head judge, renowned culinary figure and chef/owner Craft Restaurants Tom Colicchio serves as consulting producer.

A-List Chefs

Padma and the Season Five cast of Top Chef were on the red carpet at the A-List Awards taping in Los Angeles last night. Tune in to Bravo on April 15th for the show.