I had read that there is going to be a new Top Chef show called Top Chef Masters, but I hadn't seen any details until now...and I'm going to share them with you. Sounds a lot like the regular Top Chef, but with "world-renowned chefs."
NEW YORK – February 11, 2009 – As previously announced and on the heels of the highest rated season yet for the Emmy and James Beard Award-winning No. 1 food show on cable, "Top Chef," comes the spin-off "Top Chef Masters," produced by the Magical Elves with consulting producer Tom Colicchio. Food journalist Kelly Choi will serve as the series' host, and renowned restaurant critic Gael Green, culinary expert James Oseland and food critic Jay Rayner will serve as judges. The show will feature 24 world-renowned chefs competing against each other in a series of weekly challenges, as only one chef will make it to the finals to compete for the title of "Top Chef Master" and a prize for the charity of their choice.
"Top Chef lovers rejoice, Bravo and the Magical Elves are teaming up again to bring more of what our fans love most, fabulous food and tasty competition – and this time we're adding world-renowned chefs competing against each other to the menu," said Frances Berwick, Executive Vice President and General Manager, Bravo Media.
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 Green, 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. Along with Green is James Oseland, culinary expert and Editor-in-Chief of Saveur magazine, and British journalist, writer and broadcaster Jay Rayner, who 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 quickfire challenge which tests their basic abilities and the second 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 a range of 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.