After twelve wildly successful seasons, Bravo’s Top Chef gets another spinoff. On the heels of the celebrity-chef-stuffed Top Chef Masters and the pastry parade that was Top Chef: Just Desserts, comes Top Chef Duels. The new show pits the crème de la crème from past seasons of Top Chef and Top Chef Masters against each other for what Bravo boasts will be “a gastronomic battle royale of epic proportions.” (New York foodie set, take note: the eighteen contestants include our very own David Burke of Fishtail, David Burke Kitchen, and several other Manhattan staples, and Dale Talde of Brooklyn’s Talde and Pork Slope).
I got to swing by the premiere event on Monday to chat with judge Gail Simmons and host Curtis Stone and snack on some white-truffle-cream beignets and similarly delectable creations by the the Top Chef Duels contestants.
I learned that Gails Simmons, an increasingly prevalent television personality, never, ever wants to eat pureed meat (read more in my interview for Grub Street), and that Curtis Stone’s 2.5-year-old son, with actress Lindsay Price, has a rather enviable diet.
“Whatever Lindz [Lindsay Price] and I eat, Hudson has the same thing,” Stone explains. “He’s eaten everything from crab cakes, caviar, foie gras, and frogs legs to curry, you name it.”
But apparently the little one’s activity in the family garden (organic, of course) has also broadened daddy’s culinary repertoire. “He’s still picking strawberries when they’re green but that’s alright,” Stone explains. “I’ve learned to pickle green strawberries and they’re quite good as it goes.”
Perhaps under-ripe produce from the Stone family’s backyard would make for an interesting Top Chef challenge.
Tune into Bravo at 10pm EDT to see the action for yourself.
Further reading: Gail Simmons on Parenting, Top Chef Duels, and Her Network-Spanning TV Career, Grub Street