Wednesday, December 01, 2010

Ranking the All-Stars... Top Chef All-Stars, That Is

Top Chef is back and taking a page out of the Survivor playbook!

Tom, Padma, Gail and Tony are bringing back some of the best non-winners from previous seasons to compete for the season 8 crown. I would have liked it better if they'd called it 'Heroes & Villains' but 'All-Stars' is fine, too.

18 chef-testants will battle it out for the title as well as (I'm assuming) the Food & Wine feature and the cash from Glad or Dove or Aamco or whatever sponsor is ponying up the cash money this time around.

With tonight's premiere featuring the chefs having to recreate the dish that got them eliminated it sounds like we hit the ground running and we won't have to mess around with any oyster shucking or celery chopping lightning eliminations. And since there aren't any Clays or always-disappointing Baltimore chefs in the bunch, there won't be a whole lot of room for error either.

In order to bring my wretched odds-making skills from the NFL ranks into the reality TV arena (really, I took the Cardinals +1.5 on Monday? really?!) I've split the 18 returning chefs into three groups of six... Favorites, Competitors and Long Shots, names listed alphabetically and personal prejudices definitely taken into account.

Richard Blais
Jennifer Carroll
Antonia Lofaso
Angelo Sosa
Marcel Vigneron
Fabio Viviani

Tiffany Derry
Tiffani Faison
Jamie Lauren
Spike Mendelsohn
Casey Thompson
Tre Wilcox

Elia Aboumrad
Stephen Asprinio
Carla Hall
Michael Isabella
Dale Levitski
Dale Talde


Christy Z. said...

Oh man! I think I need to get back into watching this again. David & I watched all the early seasons (before I knew how to do anything but boil water...and even burned the pan doing that!) but we haven't watched in a few seasons. This looks promising!

Dan said...

Christy: I think you'd enjoy it. Definitely the cream of the crop of the folks that didn't make the winner's circle. I never pick up much in the way of cooking tips but I do love the dynamic!