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Hugh Acheson

Last week on Top Chef Seattle, the cheftestants' challenges revolved around regional ingredients. The episode was very fishy. Seattle chef Tom Douglas joined the judges' table inside the Space Needle.

Three past Top Chef competitors, Josie Smith-Malave (season 2), C.J. Jacobsen (season 3), and Stefan Richter (season 5), joined the competition. Sadly, Jeffrey Jew failed to impress the judges and was eliminated. 

Quickfire Challenge

The challenge: Create an authentic international dumpling. Working individually, each contestant must pick a country (Africa? It's a loose interpretation of "country," I guess), and then make the dough-wrapped ball of food associated with that country. Padma Lakshmi tells the chefs that they will be gifted five minutes with a Kindle Fire, the Top Chef product of the week, to research their dumpling. 
 
Dana Cowin, Editor-in-chief of Food & Wine Magazine, will judge the challenge. Dana explains that she will look to see how each chef handles a wrapper, stuffing, and sauce, adding that she has eaten her weight in dumplings. No pressure, but she knows her dumplings.
 
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What have I gotten myself into? Top Chef has brainwashed me; I need to procure a few GE Monogram appliances. Also, there are too. many. accents. this season. 
 
Last week, judges Tom Colicchio, Emeril Lagasse, Hugh Acheson, and Wolfgang Puck put the last of the Top Chef Seattle hopefuls through the ultimate chef test. The chefs who were deemed too salty, too sweaty, too full of themselves, and too boring for reality TV were eliminated. 
 
Season 10's cheftestants are Bart Vandaele, Brooke Williamson, Carla Pellegrino, Chrissy Camba, Danyele McPherson, Eliza Gavin, Jeffrey Jew, John Tesar, Josh Valentine, Kristen Kish, Kuniko Yagi, Lizzie Binder, Micah Fields, Sheldon Simeon, and Tyler Wiard
 
Alright, alright, alright! Padma Lakshmi is in the house, err, kitchen, and she's feisty. John decides to talk to his teammates while Padma is still dishing out instructions for the Quickfire challenge. She puts him in his place. Manners by Bravo lesson number one: don't talk over Padma. Standing beside Padma in a quiet and single-file line, as not to bring on Manners by Bravo lesson number two, are three past Top Chef contestants. Surprise! Josie Smith-Malave (season 2), C.J. Jacobsen (season 3), and Stefan Richter (season 5) will be the judges for the first blitzkrieg (okay, a little dramatic, but I love that word). Chrissy remembers Stefan; he's an evil villain who looks like a thumb. 
 
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Top Chef is back. Padma Lakshmi returns as host, and the series promises a "back to basics" season. Top Chef Season 10 will take us to Seattle. But, we're not actually in Seattle yet, because the judges still have some cheftestant fat to cut.

The remaining Top Chef Seattle hopefuls are broken up into four groups and must prove themselves to either Tom Colicchio, Emeril LagasseHugh Acheson, or Wolfgang Puck. The cheftestants will pour their hearts and souls (and, for some, sweat) into dinner prep, soups, omelets, and salads, and then the judges decide who moves on to Seattle. 

Head judge Tom Colicchio's team includes John Tesar, Elizabeth "Lizzie" Binder, Jorel Pierce, Micah Fields, and Anthony Gray.

John pimps himself as the "most hated chef in Dallas." Then, in case we're too dim to realize, he tells us that "hated" basically means "awesome."  John says he has a natural talent, and he's the best. Well, there you have it, Top Chef fans. Should we just call it a season and crown him the winner now? Eh, what fun would that be? Let's meet the other egos contestants. 

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Previously on Top Chef: salty grits, Padma eats ribs, and cookware gets thrown!

The chefs walk into a completely empty space, followed by Padma Lakshmi and Hugh Acheson who tell them that their elimination challenge this week will be to open and manage an Olive Garden location. Whoever can make the Tour of Italy the fastest will win access to the coveted breadsticks recipe. Finally, a challenge for us normal folks!

Actually, that never happened, but it was kinda close. Padma tells us it’s that time of the season again — for the restaurant wars challenge. Yay! This time, they will be separated by gender, which means we are in for some wonderful talking head commentary on girls ruling and boys drooling. Or, the opposite as Edward kicks off the trash talking by saying that the men are stronger chefs. You’ll want to remember that statement, folks.

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Top Chef Season 9

Top Chef returns for the ninth season of Bravo’s competition cooking show! This time they are taking the “cheftestants” on a tour of Texas culinary hotspots: San Antonio, Dallas and Austin in Top Chef: Texas!

Returning judges Tom Colicchio, Padma Lakshmi and Gail Simmons will be joined by Emeril Lagasse and Hugh Acheson along with special guests Charlize Theron, Pee-wee Herman, Cat Cora, John Besh, Tim Love and Patti LaBelle.

And proving that all things are bigger in Texas, this season the competition starts out with a record 29 cheftestants whittled down to the usual 16 during the premiere!

Those 16 chefs will then embark on a three-city culinary tour of Texas to compete for $100,000 and a feature in Food & Wine Magazine. The catch? None of the 29 chefs starting out the competition know that 13 of them will be going home almost immediately. Oops! “This season’s raising the level of intensity pretty fast,” reveals contestant Chaz Brown in the preview clip. Fittingly, some of the other contestants don’t take the news so well.

A clip of the season premiere is below! Top Chef: Texas airs tonight on Bravo (10/9c). Are you ready to get your grub on?

ARE YOU EXCITED ABOUT THE NEW SEASON OF TOP CHEF? WILL YOU BE WATCHING?

Go big or go home is the motto for Top Chef season 9 as Bravo has just announced the show will be heading to Texas!

Even more surprising is the addition of two new judges. Famed chef, restaurateur and former Food network star Emeril Lagasse and acclaimed chef Hugh Acheson have been added to the judging panel for the all new season.

Returning to join Emeril and Hugh at the judge’s table are host Padma Lakshmi and head judge, chef Tom Colicchio, alongside judge Gail Simmons.

The new season will embrace the Lone Star State’s adage that all things are bigger as in a series first, the production will head to three cities within the season – Austin, Dallas and San Antonio.

Season nine also promises to showcase many surprising twists and turns and never-before-seen challenges and events. Bravo has yet to announce the premiere date but “Top Chef: Texas” will air later this fall.

In the meantime, the second season of “Top Chef Just Desserts” will premiere Aug. 24 at 9/8c on Bravo with 14 pastry chefs competing to out-bake their competition. The winning chef will receive $100,000, a feature in Food & Wine magazine and a showcase at the Annual Food & Wine Cayman Cookout.

Photo by: David Giesbrecht /Bravo

TELL US – EXCITED ABOUT THE NEW SEASON OF TOP CHEF? WILL YOU BE WATCHING TOP CHEF JUST DESSERTS?

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