The Next Iron Chef Preview


The Food Network is set to begin the second season of “The Next Iron Chef” and Philly’s own Jose Garces is among the 10 chefs vying for his own hydraulic lift in Kitchen Stadium. Anya Fernald, Donatella Arpaia, and Jeffrey Steingarten are the judges while Alton Brown hosts. Here’s a rundown of the contestants, some odds, speculation and predictions for the upcoming season.

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Allez Cuisine!!!

Roberto Treviño

Chef and Owner, Budatai- San Juan, PR

Culinary Focus – Modern Latin

Iron Chef Record – Lost to Mario Batali in Battle Catfish

Why he’ll win – Iron Chef is due for a great Latin Chef.

Why he won’t win – Not close to NYC, Jose Garces is in this competition.

Odds- 18 1

Holly Smith

Chef and Owner-Cafe Juanita and Poco Carreto Gelato, Kirkland, WA

Culinary Focus – Northern Italian

Why she’ll win – One of the pioneers of the Pacific Northwestern food scene.

Why she won’t win – Located nowhere near NYC, Mario Batali is the resident Italian.

Odds- 15-1

Seamus Mullens

Chef and Partner, Boqueria, Flatiron and Boqueria Soho-New York, NY

Culinary Focus – Modern Spanish

Why he’ll win – New York super-chef who would bring instant Spanish flair to ICA.

Why he won’t win – Untested in Kitchen Stadium.

Odds- 4-1

Amanda Freitag

Executive Chef, The Harrison – New York NY

Culinary Focus -  Contemporary American

Iron Chef Record – Lost to Bobby Flay in Battle Alaskan King Crab

Why she’ll win – Already on the Food Network payroll as a judge on Chopped.

Why she won’t win – Not exactly the biggest personality in the room.

Odds- 12-1

Jehangir Mehta

Executive Chef and Owner, Graffiti-New York, NY

Culinary Focus – Contemporary Indian

Iron Chef Record – Won against Morimoto in Battle Coconut

Why he’ll win – Was very strong in his win over Morimoto.

Why he won’t win – Indian food has never fared well on televison.

Odds- 15-1

Eric Greenspan

Executive Chef and Owner, The Foundry on Melrose-Los Angeles , CA

Culinary Focus – French inspired American

Why he’ll win – Pushes the envelope and would make for a very entertaining Iron Chef.

Why he won’t win – His personality may take center stage over his food.

Odds- 6-1

Brad Farmerie

Executive Chef, Double Crown, Madam Geneva, PUBLIC, The Monday Room-New York, New York

Culinary Focus – Asian/European

Why he’ll win – Impressive resume includes only Michelin Star in the competition.

Why he won’t win – See: Freitag, Amanda.

Odds- 12-1

Nate Appleman

Executive Chef and Partner, Pulino’s Bar and Pizzeria, New York, (formerly of A16 and SPQR, San Francisco )

Culinary Focus -Rustic Italian

Iron Chef Record – Lost to Michael Symon in Battle Suckling Pig

Why he’ll win – Spontaneously left highly acclaimed A16 to come to New York to be a “butcher”. James Beard Rising Star Chef. Seems destined for Food Network.

Why he won’t win – Kitchen Stadium doesn’t have a pizza oven.

Odds- 5-1

Dominque Crenn

Chef de Cuisine, Luce at InterContinental- San Francisco

Culinary Focus -Farm to Table French

Why she’ll win – Esquire’s Best Chef in America 2008.

Why she won’t win -Morimoto ( 10-9-1 career record) is proof that foreign born Iron Chefs don’t always translate.

Odds- 16-1

Jose Garces

Executive Chef and Owner, Amada, Tinto, Distrito, Chifa, Villiage Whiskey- Philadelphia, PA. Mercat a la Planxa- Chicago, IL.

Culinary Focus – Pan-Latin

Iron Chef Record – Victorious over Bobby Flay in Battle Melon/Brain Freeze

Why he’ll win – One of the hottest chefs in the country. Close enough to New York to still appease the Food Network. Extremely successful win over Bobby Flay. Kinda looks like Emeril for old-times sake.

Why he won’t win – Seamus Mullen comes slinging small plates of his own.

Odds- 4-1

-Final Verdict-

Nate Appleman vs Jose Garces in a real David vs. Goliath culinary showdown. But this time Goliath is packing Pork Belly Buns, Shortrib Flatbread, and Jamón ibérico. Next Iron Chef: Jose Garces.