Series Premier: Top Chef Masters

Kelly Choi, Top Chef Masters's new host, is certainly no Padma

Kelly Choi, Top Chef Masters's new host, is certainly no Padma

Last night was the series premier of Top Chef Masters, a Bravo spinoff of Top Chef in which world-renowned chefs compete for donations to their charities of choice. Like Top Chef, each episode consists of a Quickfire Challenge and an Elimination Challenge. During these Elimination Challenges, however, all but one of the four chefs are eliminated while the winner is chosen to go on to compete in the final round later in the season. Because these contestants, including former Top Chef guest judges Hubert Keller and Wylie Dufresne, are already well-established in the world of first-class cuisine, the level of competition is more advanced and in many ways more fun and interesting to watch.
One unfortunate aspect of the Masters series is Padma’s absence; the new host, Kelly Choi, isn’t nearly forceful enough with her “Pack your knives and go,” catchphrase. On the other hand, I really like the three new judges: Gael Green, a successful New York food critic; Jay Rayner, a British critic; and James Oseland, editor-in-chief of Saveur magazine.
I already set my DVR to record the season… and I think you should too.
Top Chef Masters
Wednesday Nights at 10 pm on Bravo

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