The chefs are challenged to a taco throwdown for the taco king, actor and restaurateur Danny Trejo. For the Quickfire, the only sharp tool they can use is a machete, in honor of one of Danny's signature characters. Then, Padma informs the chefs that the only way to make it to Restaurant Wars is to survive this week's qualifying challenge. The cheftestants have to dig deep to create and pitch a restaurant concept complete with a couple of dishes to the judges -Padma, Tom and Gail, along with "Top Chef" Chicago Winner Stephanie Izard and James Beard Award winning Restaurateur Kevin Boehm. The top two concepts will be the restaurants built for the signature Restaurant Wars challenge, while the chef with the judges' least favorite concept will be eliminated.
Top Chef is a reality show unlike any other while it searches for the world's next top chef. Each week this talented group of chefs, professionally trained and self-taught, will be challenged and judged by some of the best known chefs in the industry. Over the course of the season and endless challenges one chef a week is asked to "pack thier knives and go" until there is only one left standing as the ultimate Top Chef. Bravo has once again capitalized on it's knack for finding and fostering top creative talent, while still delivering on the personalities and conflict that make for deliciously fun entertainment.
Each episode of "Top Chef" holds two challenges for the chefs. The first is a "quickfire" test of their ability to think out of the box and create something new interesting and tasty, all while under the pressure of very little time. The second is a more involved elimination challenge designed to test the versatility and invention of the chefs as they take on unique culinary trials such as working with unusual and exotic foods or catering for a range of demanding clients. The food will be tasted and evaluated by the host and judges, but will also be served to the customers for whom the challenge is aimed, whether it be patrons at a five star restaurant or a room full of hungry kids. Food has to appeal to the diner as well as the critics if the chef is to survive.
The winning chef will receive $100,000 in seed money to help encourage their culinary career, be featured in Food & Wine magazine, appear at the Food & Wine Classic in Aspen, and most importantly, earn the prestigious title of "Top Chef".