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|Education||Cambridge Culinary Institute|
Tiffani Faison (born August 20, 1977)is a German–born American chef and was one of two finalists on the first season of Bravo's reality show, Top Chef . She finished second place to Harold Dieterle. Faison is based in Boston, Massachusetts.
Faison worked briefly as a bartender at Lucky's Lounge in 2001 and had a brief and unsuccessful stint at the Ritz Carlton Boston Common as the Backlot's Food and Beverage Director later the same year. She attended the Cambridge Culinary Institute (2002-2003).Just prior to appearing on Top Chef, Faison was employed as chef de partie under Daniel Boulud at his signature, Michelin Star restaurant in the Wynn Las Vegas and also worked at the Tao restaurant at The Venetian in the same city.
After the airing of the final episode of Top Chef in May 2006, Faison took a summer position cooking at the Straight Wharf restaurant in Nantucket, Massachusetts, working under chefs Amanda Lydon and Gabriel Frasca.In 2007, she was executive chef at Todd English's brasserie, Riche , in New Orleans, Louisiana. In May 2007, Faison cohosted a Greek Isles culinary cruise for Olivia, a lesbian lifestyle and travel services company.
Faison took part in a single episode cooking competition called 4 Star All Stars which pitted four Top Chef season one contestants (Stephen Asprinio, Dieterle, Faison and David Martin) against four season two contestants (Elia Aboumrad, Ilan Hall, Sam Talbot and Marcel Vigneron). Faison's team scored the winning menu and received a $20,000 donation to the Susan G. Komen for the Cure charity. This episode aired on Bravo on June 6, 2007.
Faison also took part in the Top Chef Holiday Special that aired on December 7, 2007, winning the $20,000 prize.
Faison returned to Boston, and was Executive Chef at Rocca Kitchen & Bar (500 Harrison Avenue), a once popular neighborhood space on Friday nights, until it closed in December, 2010.
Faison returned as a contestant on season 8 of Top Chef, and was eliminated in the sixth episode.
Faison finished as runner-up in the Top Chef Duels 2014 competition.As of 2020, Faison is an occasional judge on Chopped and participated as the judge to beat on one of the beat the judge episodes.
Faison is currently owner and head chef of Sweet Cheeks Q, a Texas-style barbecue restaurant in Boston's Fenway District. Opened in the Fall of 2011, it is her first restaurant.In December 2015 she opened Tiger Mama, a restaurant in Fenway focusing on Southeast Asian cuisine. In February 2019, Faison opened up her third Fenway restaurant, the "Adult Snack Bar" Fool's Errand. Her newest venture Orfano, which serves Italian-American cuisine, opened in August 2019.
Faison formerly identified as bisexualbut now identifies as lesbian. She is married to her business partner Kelly Walsh, who serves as director of operations for Faison's restaurant group, Big Heart Hospitality.
Faison was born in Germany, where her Vietnam vet father was stationed. They moved around several times during her childhood and by the time she was in high school, settled in Santa Rosa, California. She has been described as a competitive cheerleader. She began volunteering for HIV/AIDS organizations and going into San Francisco.
Rocco DiSpirito is an American chef based in New York City.
Rick Bayless is an American chef and restaurateur who specializes in traditional Mexican cuisine with modern interpretations. He is widely known for his PBS series Mexico: One Plate at a Time.
Curtis Stone is an Australian celebrity chef, author and television personality, nicknamed "The Quiet Terminator" by fans following his performance on The Celebrity Apprentice 3.
Top Chef is an American reality competition television series that premiered March 8, 2006, on Bravo. The show features chefs competing against each other in culinary challenges. They are judged by a panel of professional chefs and other notables from the food and wine industry with one or more contestants eliminated in each episode. The show is produced by Magical Elves Productions, the company that created Project Runway.
Harold Dieterle III is an American top chef, best known as the winner of the first season of the Bravo television network's reality television series Top Chef. After winning Top Chef, he owned and ran three restaurants in New York City: Perilla, Kin Shop, and The Marrow. He closed all three in 2014 and 2015.
Elizabeth Falkner is an American consulting chef. She is currently residing and working in New York and has been cooking since 1990. She frequently appears as a competitor and sometimes a judge on many of the cooking competitions on television from "The Next Iron Chef, Super Chefs", 2011 and "The Next Iron Chef, Redemption", 2012,, as well as "Chopped All Stars",, "Top Chef Masters", "Top Chef", "Top Chef: Just Desserts", (Bravo), "Top Chef, Canada", "Food Network Challenge",. Falkner was the executive/chef/pastry chef and managing partner of Citizen Cake for 14 years, and executive chef and co-owner/co-managing partner of Orson for 4 years, restaurants located in San Francisco, California, U.S.. Both establishments closed in 2011. In 2012 Falkner won First Prize at the World Pizza Championships in Naples, Italy with her innovative "Finocchio Flower Power" pizza. Falkner relocated to Brooklyn, NY in 2012 and was employed at Krescendo for seven months.
Top Chef: San Francisco, originally broadcast simply as Top Chef, is the first season of the American reality television series Top Chef. It was first filmed in San Francisco, California, before concluding in Las Vegas, Nevada. The season premiered on March 8, 2006 and ended on May 24, 2006. The show featured chefs from around the United States living together in one house and competing in a series of culinary challenges. The prizes for the winner of the competition included a feature in Food & Wine Magazine, a showcase at the annual Food & Wine Classic in Aspen, Colorado, a Kenmore Elite kitchen set, and US$100,000. The series was hosted by Katie Lee Joel, in her only season as a host, and judged by chef Tom Colicchio and food writer Gail Simmons. In the season finale, Harold Dieterle was declared the Top Chef, defeating Tiffani Faison.
Marcel Vigneron is a Celebrity Chef best known for his award winning restaurant and catering company in Los Angeles “Wolf”. Marcel was also the runner-up of second season of Top Chef, which aired 2006–2007. In 2011, he had his own television program on Syfy, Marcel's Quantum Kitchen, in which he started and ran a molecular gastronomy experiential catering company. He later competed on Top Chef: All-Stars in 2011, on The Food Network's The Next Iron Chef in 2012 and The Food Network's "Superstar Sabotage: Heat 2" on the show Cutthroat Kitchen in 2014. Marcel has gone on to judge several televised cooking competitions such as Iron Chef, America’s Best Cooks, and Guy's Grocery Games.
Sam Talbot is an American chef from Charlotte, North Carolina, best known for being on Season 2 of Bravo's Top Chef, eventually placing third. Talbot returned to Top Chef for the episode "Four Star All Stars" with Elia Aboumrad, Marcel Vigneron, and Ilan Hall. Talbot and the other three were defeated by Season 1's Tiffani Faison, Harold Dieterle, and Stephen Asprinio. Talbot returned for Top Chef's Season 14, but was eliminated in the third episode.
Lee Anne Wong is an American chef, and in 2006 was one of the last four contestants on the first season of Bravo's reality show, Top Chef. She was the culinary producer for the next four seasons of Top Chef, where her duties included sourcing and styling the ingredients for the various challenges, as well as determining the budget, equipment restrictions and time limits. She also blogged about the show for Bravo, and hosted the webcast Top Recipe: The Wong Way to Cook, in which she demonstrated how to prepare various winning dishes invented by the program contestants.
Elia Aboumrad is a Mexican chef and former Top Chef contestant.
Stephanie Izard is an American chef and television personality residing in Chicago, Illinois, best known as the first female chef to win Bravo's Top Chef, taking the title during its fourth season. She is the co-owner and executive chef of three award-winning Chicago restaurants, Girl and the Goat, Little Goat, and Duck Duck Goat, and opened her first restaurant, Scylla as chef-owner at the age of 27. Izard received a James Beard Foundation Award for "Best Chef: Great Lakes" in 2013 for her work at Girl and the Goat. She has made a number of appearances on Top Chef since her win, both as a guest judge on subsequent seasons and as a participant in Top Chef Duels. In 2017, Izard competed in the Food Network series Iron Chef Gauntlet, where she overall defeated chefs Bobby Flay, Michael Symon, and Masaharu Morimoto to obtain the title of Iron Chef.
Carla Hall is an American chef, television personality and former model.
Mary Sue Milliken is an American chef, restaurateur, cookbook author, and radio and TV personality with a focus on Latin cuisine in the United States.
Missy Robbins is an American chef who has held a Michelin star at two restaurants, and a contestant on season four of Top Chef Masters. Robbins specializes in Italian cuisine and owns two Italian restaurants in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, Lilia and Misi, which opened in 2016 and 2018 respectively.
Kristen Kish is a Korean-American chef best known for winning Season 10 of Top Chef. She was formerly chef de cuisine at Menton in the Fort Point neighborhood of Boston. She is also a host of a TV show called 36 Hours.
Sarah Grueneberg is an American chef who is head chef and owner of Monteverde Restaurant & Pastificio in Chicago. While executive chef at Spiaggia, she held a Michelin star for three years. In 2017, she was named the 2017 Best Chefs in the Great Lakes at the James Beard Foundation Awards. Grueneberg came second in the ninth season of Top Chef, and appeared on Iron Chef Gauntlet.
Melissa King is a Chinese-American chef and television personality, best known for her appearances on the reality competition series Top Chef. She first appeared on the show's twelfth season, Top Chef: Boston, placing fourth; she then returned for the seventeenth season, Top Chef: All-Stars L.A., which she won. She specializes in modern Californian cuisine.
Fatima Ali was a Pakistani-American executive chef, restaurateur and television personality. She came to notice for her successful appearances on reality cooking shows Chopped and Top Chef, and for winning the James Beard Foundation Award for her essay on living with sarcoma.
Karen Akunowicz is an American chef based in Boston, Massachusetts.