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Jun 16, 2008 12:46 PM

Top Chef 5 in NYC!

Found this on NY Magazine's website today. It's about time (if it's true)!

Top Chef is coming at last to the city where it was plainly meant to be: our own metropolis of New York City, reports Snack. Lee Ann Wong of the French Culinary Institute, Top Chef’s culinary producer, confirms that the show will be in New York, but not without some reservations: “It’s definitely going to create some challenges for us. Hopefully people will be cool enough to respect what we’re doing and not follow us around with cameraphones.” We doubt it, but that should just add to the frenzy of hype, speculation, and gossip that is Top Chef’s singular mood and music. Given how aggressive the bloggers were in Chicago (they scoped out the chefs with telescopic lenses), we can only imagine what will happen when New York’s blogging corps gets a beachhead.

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  1. Yipeeee!!!! I thought it wouldn't happen because of all the pushy New Yorkers. Goodhealthgourmet, I'm sure you're celebrating right now!

    6 Replies
    1. re: Miss Needle

      I expect the Alpha Hound to be a judge on one of those episodes. And Meredith won't have to deal with crappy cell phone connections for her interviews.

      1. re: Phaedrus

        Jim Leff HAS to be one of the judges! Figured it would be in NYC - will be interesting to see what happens when the bloggers get a hold of the information! I didn't realize the Chicago bloggers were as vigilant in scoping things out!

        1. re: LindaWhit

          You think he'll be wearing his dog mask on national TV? : )

            1. re: Miss Needle

              Well, to keep himself anonymous, he HAS to! Whaddya say Jim? Think you could manage to eat around that mask? ;-)

        2. re: Miss Needle

          lol, miss needle :) of course i am...i just saw this post & it made my night.

          time for the happy dance!

        3. How is Bravo going to narrow down where to go? I would find the choices overwhelming.

          2 Replies
          1. re: Chew on That

            While I'm sure we'll see some new places, I'm guessing some past judges and their respective places will be represented. Boulud, Dufresne, Ripert, etc. As well as the FCI, Le Cirque...

            1. re: hash_slinger

              and considering that they served as sous-chefs & guest judges for the finale, i imagine april bloomfield & dan barber [or their respective restaurants] may make appearances as well.

          2. Its true.. they will be filming later this summer.. I was surprised they didn't pick a west coast location, but NYC is a mecca for food..

            5 Replies
            1. re: grant.cook

              They've already done two West Coast locations. Although they've already been to NY once (for the penultimate episodes of season three).

              1. re: Ruth Lafler

                And I could have sworn Bravo's headquarters were in NY. It would definitely make it easier on the budget as they don't have to find housing for the crew.

                1. re: Miss Needle

                  Bravo's headquarters are in NY (it's part of NBC). But the show itself is not produced by Bravo. It's produced by a company called Magical Elves, which is not owned by Bravo (in fact, I'm guessing Bravo is pretty upset about the fact that ME sold the sixth season of Project Runway to Lifetime, which I believe is owned by ABC). It appears their HQ is in Los Angeles.

                  1. re: Ruth Lafler

                    I read about that. NBC is accusing Magic Elves of not dealing in good faith. I forget the reason they gave for the switch. I don't think it was all about the money though.

                    1. re: Phaedrus

                      Will be interesting to see what they do with TC as well. And see how the ratings hold up on Lifetime.

            2. with the exception of Boulud, i hope they use new judges instead of using ones already from the previous seasons.

              Bruni, Ramsey, Batali, Reichl

              8 Replies
              1. re: attractivekid

                bruni would never appear as himself on's challenging enough for him already to review restaurants without being recognized.

                i don't think mario & ruthie are such long shots, but i doubt gordon would make an appearance...particularly after tom colicchio has said in interviews that while TC is about the food & the contestants, "gordon's shows are all about gordon."

                1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                  I agree Bruni will not appear to protect his anonymity but it's really not hard to find a picture of the man. He appears on the dust jacket of the book he published before he got the restaurant critic gig.

                  1. re: KTinNYC

                    apparently he's much heavier than he was then, so i'm guessing that helps a little. anyway, he may not be a guest judge, but he obviously watches the show...

                    from his review of *bar q* in today's paper:

                    "...a dessert of warm walnut soup that tasted like a mishap involving cookie dough and dishwater. I’d kill to listen to a panel of “Top Chef” judges make sense of this sludge."

                    1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                      LOL! It would be interesting to hear several of the more vocal TC judges weigh in on that dessert!

                2. re: attractivekid

                  Maybe Bruni and Bourdain can compete who can be the snarkiest as they judge.

                  1. re: attractivekid

                    everyone knows what bruni looks like though

                    batali (tvfn), ramsey (fox), and reichl (gourmet magazine) all have shows/contracts with competing media outlets, which is why I see them as longshots.

                    1. re: attractivekid

                      But you've got Ted Allen who's appeared numerous times as a guest judge on Iron Chef America and Bourdain who's on the Travel Network.

                      And I don't know what Bruni looks like. All I've seen is the old pic of him that is reminiscent of Ray Liotta.

                      1. re: Miss Needle

                        Ah! Just found a more recent pic of Bruni. Looks like a chubby Liotta.

                  2. Too Much Time At Work (tm)

                    Quickfire Challenges:
                    * make a new menu item for Shake Shack
                    * 5am Fulton Fish market raw bar
                    * attend a Sandra Lee taping and recreate all her dishes from scratch

                    Elimination Challenges:
                    * Top Chef hot dog carts
                    * Top Iron Chef America: Battle Glad products
                    * Anyone not getting the 8pm seating at Momofuku Ko will be eliminated

                    Guest Judges:
                    * Chowhound's Leff
                    * E-Gullet's Fat Guy
                    * halloween (masked) judges: Frank Bruni + Gael Greene
                    * Julie Chen (cbs-cnet connection)

                    4 Replies
                    1. re: marblebag

                      bill buford would make for an interesting judge.

                      1. re: steve h.

                        Lets face it, there is no shortage of potential judges in NYC. Its just a matter of who they can entice.

                        1. re: Phaedrus

                          enticement isn't an issue either. in his interview, colicchio said that every chef he knows has asked if/when they can appear on the show.

                      2. re: marblebag

                        "Anyone not getting the 8pm seating at Momofuku Ko will be eliminated"
                        So we can wrap-up the whole season in one day :-)