'Top Chef Masters' fifth season to premiere July 24 on Bravo, cast and twists revealed
By Elizabeth Kwiatkowski, 06/05/2013
Bravo has revealed the identities of the 13 chefs competing on Top Chef Masters' fifth season and announced the season will premiere Wednesday, July 24 at 10PM ET/PT.
Hosted once again by celebrity chef Curtis Stone, Top Chef Masters' fifth season will pit 13 world-renowned chefs against each other in a series of culinary challenges. Each week, the chefs will be whittled down until a winner is crowned and receives the title of "Top Chef Master" and $100,000 for his or her charity.
Gail Simmons will serve as the new head critic, and the series will star returning judges James Oseland, Ruth Reichl and Francis Lam along with new judge Lesley Suter, a food and dining editor.
In a new twist, each "Masters" participant will have his or her own sous chef competing in an online competition entitled Battle of the Sous Chefs hosted by Hugh Acheson. The results of each online episode will directly impact the Masters in that they may receive advantages or disadvantages throughout the television competition based on their sous chef's performances.
If a sous chef wins a battle online, for example, immunity will be awarded to the appropriate Master. If a sous chef delivers a lackluster dish or performs a task poorly, his or her Master may be given obstacles to complete. Every episode of "Battle of the Sous Chefs" will lead into each broadcast of Top Chef Masters, and the two projects will show the uniquely interdependent relationship between a Master and his or her sous chef.
Celebrity guest judges will include Mindy Kaling, Busy Philipps, Kathie Lee Gifford, Lindsay Price, the cast of Days of our Lives, Ali Larter, the cast of Yo Gabba Gabba, and Lucha Va Voom.
The 13 chefs who will be competing on Top Chef Masters' fifth season are as follows:
- Franklin Becker from The Little Beet in New York, NY (Sous chef is Vinson Petrillo)
- David Burke from David Burke Townhouse, Burke in the Box, David Burke Fishtail, etc in New York, NY (Sous chef is Chris Shea)
- Lynn Crawford from Ruby Watchco and Ruby Eats in Toronto, Canada (Sous chef is Lora Kirk)
- Odette Fada from San Domenico in New York, NY (Sous chef is Benedetto Bartolotta)
- Neal Fraser from BLD, Fritzi Dog, The Strand House, etc in Los Angeles, CA (Sous chef is Jason Bowlin)
- Jennifer Jasinski from Rioja, Bistro Vendome, and Euclid Hall Bar & Kitchen in Denver, CO (Sous chef is Jorel Pierce)
- Douglas Keane from Cyrus in Sonoma County, CA (Sous chef is Drew Gassell)
- Jenn Louis from Lincoln and Sunshine Tavern in Portland, OR (Sous chef is Cory Chunn)
- Richard Sandoval from Richard Sandoval Restaurants in Los Angeles, CA (Sous chef is Greg Howe)
- Bryan Voltaggio from VOLT, Lunchbox, Family Meal, and RANGE in Frederick, MD (Sous chef is Graeme Ritchie)
- Herbert Wilson from Sushi Samba in Las Vegas, NV (Sous chef is Robert Silva)
- Sang Yoon from Father's Office and Lukshon Restaurant in Los Angeles, CA (Sous chef is Ted Hopson)
- Sue Zemanick from Gautreau's in New Orleans, NO (Sous chef is Nick Lama)