via press release:
SAVE ROOM FOR BRAVO’S “TOP CHEF JUST DESSERTS” PREMIERING WED. SEPTEMBER 15 AT 11 PM ET/PT
Twelve Pastry Chefs Whip It Up Along With Host Gail Simmons, Judges Johnny Iuzzini, Hubert Keller and Dannielle Kyrillos
NEW YORK – July 30, 2010 – You may get a sugar high from Bravo’s sweetest new series, “Top Chef Just Desserts” – a spin-off of the 2010 Primetime Emmy-nominated and James Beard Award-winning “Top Chef,” premiering Wednesday, September 15 at 11 p.m. ET/PT, and moving into its regular timeslot of 10 p.m. on Wednesday, September 22. These chefs can have their cake and make it too as the main focus of this competition is the Achilles heel of most chefs: desserts. This time the pastry chefs will see if they have what it takes to out flambé, out frost and out fudge the competition. Gail Simmons, a series judge on “Top Chef” for the past seven seasons, takes on the hosting duties of this highly competitive series showcasing the best of the best in the world of pastry arts. Joining the judges’ panel as head judge is Johnny Iuzzini, one of the country’s most celebrated and innovative pastry chefs and Executive Pastry Chef at Restaurant Jean Georges. Hubert Keller, critically acclaimed chef as well as guest judge on “Top Chef” and finalist on “Top Chef Masters,” and Dannielle Kyrillos, entertaining expert and DailyCandy Editor-at-Large will also serve as regular judges for the series.
Filled with delicious twists, turns and drama unlike anything that “Top Chef” has seen, “Top Chef Just Desserts” features highly celebrated chefs in the pastry world ranging from “Mr. Chocolate” himself, Jacques Torres; the “Leonardo Da Vinci of cakes,” Sylvia Weinstock to Wolfgang Puck’s famed Spago pastry chef, Sherry Yard and Eric Ripert’s Le Bernardin pastry chef Michael Laiskonis, among others. The challenges featured will be some of the most creative and inventive yet: from timed wedding cakes and flaming desserts to chocolate show pieces and edible fashion. The series offers a fascinating window into the competitive, pressure-filled environment of pastry chefs at the highest level. Each episode holds two challenges for the pastry chefs: the first, a quickfire test of their basic abilities and the elimination challenge designed to test the versatility and inventiveness of the pastry chefs. These chefs will prove that a little sugar and spice never tasted so nice.
“Being a successful dessert chef is exacting and complicated,” said Andy Cohen, SVP, Original Programming & Development, Bravo. “The results are stupendous and mouthwatering, but the process is intense – kind of like the show itself.”
“Everyone expects the world of desserts to be as beautiful, fluffy and sweet as the food,” said Jane Lipsitz, Executive Producer, Magical Elves. “But what we got was one of the most competitive and dramatic seasons of ‘Top Chef’ ever.”
Added Dan Cutforth, Executive Producer, “pastry chefs need three things to work comfortably – their recipes, time and complete control. It’s fascinating to see what happens when they don’t have any of them.”
The 12 “Top Chef Just Desserts” chef’testants will be whittled down week by week as they compete to outbake their competition. The winning chef will receive $100,000 furnished by Godiva Chocolatier, a feature in Food & Wine magazine, a showcase at the Annual Pebble Beach Food & Wine Festival and a 2011 German Engineered Sport Injected Buick Regal.
Following are the 12 new “Top Chef Just Desserts” chef’testants:
– Danielle Keene, 29 – Hometown: Los Angeles, Calif.; Resides in South Pasadena, Calif.
– Eric Wolitzky, 38 – Hometown: Rochester, N.Y.; Resides in New York, N.Y.
– Erika Davis, 40 – Hometown: Tamms, Ill.; Resides in Jacksonville Beach, Fla.
– Heather Chittum, 37 – Hometown: Brooklyn, N.Y.; Resides in Washington, D.C.
– Heather Hurlbert, 40 – Hometown: Seoul, South Korea; Resides in Atlanta, Ga.
– Malika Ameen, 35 – Hometown/Resides in: Chicago, Ill.
– Morgan Wilson, 37 – Hometown: Sonora, Calif.; Resides in Dallas, Texas
– Seth Caro, 34 – Hometown: Chappaqua, N.Y.; Resides in New York, N.Y.
– Tania Peterson, 39 – Hometown: Cambridge, Mass; Resides in Boston, Mass.
– Tim Nugent, 41 – Hometown: Alburgh, Vt.; Resides in Oakland, Calif.
– Yigit Pura, 29 – Hometown: Ankara, Turkey; Resides in San Francisco, Calif.
– Zac Young, 27 – Hometown: Portland, Maine, Resides in New York, N.Y.
Www.BravoTV.com is prepped to go beyond just desserts! In addition to exclusive behind-the-scenes video, we’ll deliver the inside story from the judges in their weekly blogs, and answer the question “What were they thinking?!” with exclusive extended footage from the Judges’ Table. Top Chef fans can then play judge by rating each week’s dishes in the “Rate the Plate” photo gallery. Or, viewers can try on the apron themselves by making each week’s winning dish in their own kitchen with the guidance of this season’s “Top Recipe” video host, Top Chef Masters Season 1 standout Elizabeth Falkner. If fans need even more help with their dessert skills, they can watch easy-to-follow video tips hosted by the show’s judges. And while the chef’testants battle it out, viewers can also compete with games that test memory, dexterity, and other foodie skills. For a sneak peek at “Top Chef Just Desserts,” go to: http://www.bravotv.com/top-chef-just-desserts/videos/drama-never-tasted-so-sweet.
Chef fans can also visit m.bravotv.com from their web-enabled phone for on-the-go access to content including blogs, photo galleries, photo diaries and videos. Fans who text CHEF to 27286 can join the Top Chef Just Desserts mobile fan club and receive behind-the-scenes dish and exclusive interactive content from the chef’testants, hosts and judges.
“Top Chef: Just Desserts” is produced by the Emmy-nominated Magical Elves. Dan Cutforth and Jane Lipsitz serve as executive producers.
Bravo is a program service of NBC Universal Cable Entertainment, a division of NBC Universal, one of the world’s leading media and entertainment companies in the development, production, and marketing of entertainment, news, and information to a global audience. Bravo has been an NBC Universal cable network since December 2002 and was the first television service dedicated to film and the performing arts when it launched in December 1980. For more information, visit www.BravoTV.com. Follow us on Twitter at https://twitter.com/BravoPR.