Yes my loves! Top Chef is back and better than ever with a new season starting Wednesday, November 12th @ 10pm on Bravo and in my hometown of NYC. Can I get a whooo hoo? This season is slated to be the most challenging yet (what? no meals made from vending machines?). Plus our fave, Martha Stewart will appear as a guest judge, I am greatly intrigued by her and wonder if she will make anyone cry. This season will be near and dear to me as a friend of mine is a cheftestant so I am crossing my fingers that he made it far…
Meet the cast here
Read the full press release with many juicy-esque details here
I have trolled through the bios and landed on two we may want to look out for, a hometown gal from Centro Vinoteca + my friend whose food I adore, of course.
HOMETOWN: Scarsdale, N.Y. – currently resides in New York, N.Y.
PROFESSION: Sous Chef, Centro Vinoteca
CULINARY EDUCATION: A.O.S./ B.A., CIA
FAVORITE SIMPLE SUMMER RECIPE: Ricotta stuffed zucchini blossoms and panzanella salad
Leah currently works as a Sous Chef at Centro Vinoteca in New York City. Apart from the year and a half that she worked at a Michelin-starred restaurant in Italy, she has spent her entire life in New York and comes from a Filipino, Russian-Romanian Jewish background. Her favorite chef is Marco Pierre White and she counts salt, olive oil, butter, garlic and any pork product as her must-have ingredients. She loves Italian, Filipino and Thai cuisine, but homemade pasta is what she enjoys making the most.
HOMETOWN: Niceville, Fla. – currently resides in Miami, Fla.
PROFESSION: Chef de Cuisine, The DiLido Beach Club
CULINARY EDUCATION: Johnson & Wales University
FAVORITE SIMPLE SUMMER RECIPE: Melon sorbet salad
Jeff got his culinary start at age 15 by cleaning local fish while working on Florida fishing boats and a year later began peeling shrimp, cleaning squid and cutting fish for The Marina Café. Jeff embarked on his professional career as a Sous Chef at Atlanticville Restaurant and Café outside of Charleston, South Carolina while attending school at Johnson & Wales University. He went on to hone his culinary skills as a Sous Chef in San Francisco at Azie, an upscale Asian fusion restaurant, and later served as a Sous Chef at the Five Star Orient Express resort in Virginia where he expanded on his knowledge of French and American cuisines. Returning to his native Florida, Jeff worked directly under Chef Norman Van Aken and then joined The Ritz-Carlton, South Beach culinary team. He currently serves as Chef de Cuisine of The DiLido Beach Club. His recent sabbaticals include traveling to North Africa, Turkey, Italy, and the Greek Isles to discover new techniques which he uses daily at home with Florida ingredients.