Top Chef is back for season eleven...nineteen chefs will duke it out in New Orleans for the coveted title of "Top Chef." Their first challenge sends them to the Louisiana swamp where they must cook with one of three local delicacies: alligator, frog or turtle. The competition is hot and humid, as the judges work to send the first Chef home.
Gumbo is a dish that gets better over time. For their first Quickfire challenge, the chef'testants work overnight to perfect dishes for legendary Chef, Leah Chase. And for the elimination challenge, the chef'testants are tasked with creating and operating food trucks to feed Habitat for Humanity volunteers helping to rebuild New Orleans after the destruction of Hurricane Katrina.
An elimination Quickfire challenge keeps the chef'testants on their toes this week as they make dishes with items on Dana Cowin's worst "Food Trends" list. For the Elimination challenge, the chef'testants are asked to replicate legacy dishes from the iconic Commander's Palace menu. Joining the judges are Commander's Palace current Chef and alumni: Emeril Lagasse, Paul Prodhomme, and Tory McPhail.
The Vietnamese culture has a strong presence in New Orleans. Judge Emeril Lagasse and guest judge Eddie Huang give the chef'testants a crash course in these customs and task them with creating a multi-course Vietnamese meal.
This week, the chef'testants face challenges full of chills and thrills. After tackling a Quickfire challenge where all of the ingredients and tools are wrapped in aluminum foil, the chefs must cater a Halloween party for singer/actress Lea Michele. Not only does the food have to be vegetarian, but it has to be spook-tacular!
New Orleans super-chef John Besh introduces the chef'testants to one of his favorite farms where they are tasked with making a dish out of a prized local crop - the creole tomato. For the Elimination Challenge, the farm to table theory continues as the chef'testants try to impress the upper-tiered chefs in John Besh's restaurant empire.
In this week's Quickfire challenge, famed musician Kermit Ruffins provides the tunes for a foodie version of musical chairs. And in the Elimination Challenge, Kermit hosts a jazzy pot luck for his musician friends, and the chef'testants must bring the food. Will it be harmonious or will it all go flat?
After a Quickfire challenge where the chef'testants are tasked with making their own hot sauce for legendary musician Dr. John, the focus turns to the pig, the whole pig and nothing but the pig, as the chefs butcher and cook up a 300 pound hog.
It's baaack - the beloved "Restaurant Wars" challenge. The chef'testants face this classic challenge head on - creating pop-up restaurants to impress the renowned judges panel, which includes chef and restaurateur David Chang.
In this week's Quickfire challenge - can you smell the coffee? For the Elimination challenge, the chefs must make dishes that remind them of home. Actor Anthony Mackie joins the judges and Leah Chase for the heartfelt meal.
Chef John Besh returns to judge the chef'testants versions of the New Orleans classic, etouffe. Next, the chef'testants are tasked with honoring the local bounty from the gulf by preparing dishes made with two different types of seafood along the shore of the Mississippi River.
Culinary legend Jacques Pepin tests the chefs technique in a Quickfire based on one of his favorite dishes. For their Elimination Challenge, the French and Spanish are battling it out in the kitchen as the chef'testants make meals to represent both cultures.
Food Truck pioneer Roy Choi stops by to judge this week's Quickfire - a Nola staple - po' boys. And for the Elimination Challenge, Actor/ Director Jon Favreau stops by and asks the chef'testants to dig deep to put their own culinary visions on a plate.
It's down to the final four chef'testants and the last challenges in New Orleans push them to their limits. In the Quickfire, Tom and Gail present their own tests as the chefs battle for a new car. And to get to the finals, the chefs must demonstrate how New Orleans has impacted their food, with hopes of impressing the judges along with Top Chef Masters winner Douglas Keane, Grant Achatz and Andrew Carmellini.
Aloha!! The final chefs head to Hawaii for the big finale. In Maui, the Final 3 learn which chef from Last Chance Kitchen will be rejoining the competition. Their Quickfire features a Hawaiian staple...Spam. The pressure is on to create the best dishes with Hawaiian canoe crops since the double elimination will send only 2 chefs through to the finale.
After a long journey competing in 30 challenges from New Orleans to Maui, the final two chefs must execute the best service of their lives while opening pop-up restaurants to win the title and the bragging rights to be "Top Chef."