Okay, so now it’s official: Both Jason Cichonski and Nick Elmi will be competing on this year’s Top Chef, premiering Oct. 2 on Bravo. This season will be set in New Orleans (which is awesome, not matter how far off the rails the show may go), and feature our two hometown guys (plus a bunch of other people that we don’t care about) all competing for a sack full of money and the kind of instant celebrity that have made former contestants like Jen Carroll and Kevin Sbraga household names far beyond the neighborhoods in which they cook.
So what do we know right now? Well, NOLA.com (which got the initial release this morning) is reporting that Padma, Tom, Gail, Emeril and Hugh Acheson will all be back as judges. Guest judges will include Jon Favreau, Lea Michele, Anthony Mackie, Jacques Pepin, David Chang, Eddie Huang and another local hero–Questlove. A few of the other chef-testants names have been announced (including chefs from NYC and Boston), but the rest are going to be trickled out over the next couple days because if Top Chef is good at anything, it’s stretching out a reveal.
Still, there was a video released. It reveals…very little. But still, it’s a Top Chef teaser video in which Padma dances, so you know you want to watch it.
Top Chef New Orleans To Premiere Oct. 2nd [NOLA.com]