'Top Chef' Houston
Source: Bravo

Yeehaw! 'Top Chef' Is Headed to Houston — Find Out Which Chefs Made the Cut

Shannon Raphael - Author
By

Jan. 27 2022, Published 11:02 a.m. ET

The high-stakes culinary competition Top Chef is officially coming back for a 19th season, and host Padma Lakshmi, judges Tom Colicchio and Gail Simmons, and the cheftestants are all headed to Houston, Texas, for the first time on the show.

A teaser trailer for the upcoming season dropped in January 2022, and viewers got a glimpse at what they can expect to see once the food series returns.

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"Top Chef is back. Fifteen of the country's most talented chefs have traveled to Houston to compete in one of the most diverse cities in the nation," Padma says in the sneak peek clip.

Since Texas is the Lone Star State, it only makes sense that Houston would serve as the place where the next winner is named.

Before Padma starts asking one chef to please pack their knives and go each week, take a look at the 15 contestants competing in the Texas city.

'Top Chef' Houston
Source: Bravo
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Leia Gaccione

Leia Gaccione
Source: Emily Shur / Bravo

This Season 19 star works in Morristown, N.J. at the American food restaurant south + pine. She opened the eatery in 2015, and she's previously appeared on Beat Bobby Flay, Chopped, Iron Chef Showdown, and Iron Chef America.

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Stephanie Miller

Stephanie Miller
Source: Emily Shur / Bravo

Stephanie is based in her hometown of Bismarck, N.D., which is where her restaurants, Butterhorn and Shelter Belt, are located.

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Sam Kang

Sam Kang
Source: Emily Shur / Bravo

After working at several restaurants with Michelin stars, Sam embarked on a career as a chef educator to kids in 2020. The contestant originally hails from Southern California, but he is currently based in Brooklyn, N.Y.

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Jae Jung

Jae Jung
Source: Emily Shur / Bravo

Jae is from Seoul, and she moved to the United States to attend the Culinary Institute of America in 2009. She now is the owner and chef at KJUN, a Korean-Cajun pop-up in New York City.

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Monique Feybesse

Monique Feybesse
Source: Emily Shur / Bravo

Monique now owns Tarts de Feybesse in California. Before she moved back to her home state, she was a chef in Paris for about three years at Pavillon Ledoyen (which has three Michelin stars).

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Jo Chan

Jo Chan
Source: Emily Shur / Bravo

Jo isn't exactly working at home, but the Executive Chef is normally based in Austin, Texas.

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Jackson Kalb

Jackson Kalb
Source: Emily Shur / Bravo

Jackson is the chef and owner of Jame Enoteca and Ospi in Los Angeles, Calif. The Season 19 star works alongside his wife, Melissa, at both of the eateries.

He is set to open up his third restaurant in L.A., Gemma di Mare, in 2022.

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Nick Wallace

Nick Wallace
Source: Emily Shur / Bravo

Nick lives and works as a chef in Mississippi, and he's the founder of Nick Wallace Culinary, Nick Wallace Catering, and the Nissan Café. The cheftestant is next set to open CHURN Creameries.

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Sarah Welch

Sarah Welch
Source: Emily Shur / Bravo

Sarah is the Executive Chef at Marrow, and she's a co-founder of Mink. Both food spots are located in Detroit, MI.

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Buddha Lo

Buddha Lo
Source: Emily Shur / Bravo

Buddha hails from Port Douglas, Australia, but he's been living and working in Brooklyn, NY at Huso (which is part of Marky's Caviar).

He previously worked at Restaurant Gordon Ramsay, which has three Michelin stars.

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Ashleigh Shanti

Ashleigh Shanti
Source: Emily Shur / Bravo

Ashleigh is from Virginia Beach, VA, but she's been working as a chef at Hot Fish in Asheville, N.C. (which she also created). Though she is trained in Classic French and Northern Italian cuisine, her speciality is in Southern Appalachian food.

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Evelyn Garcia

Evelyn Garcia
Source: Emily Shur / Bravo

Evelyn has a home field advantage on the competition, as she already works in Houston, Texas. She's the chef and co-owner of Kin HTX.

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Robert Hernandez

Robert Hernandez
Source: Emily Shur / Bravo

This chef was working at the San Francisco restaurant, Octavia, when it got a Michelin star during the first year it was open.

Now, Robert works as a private chef.

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Damarr Brown

Damarr Brown
Source: Emily Shur / Bravo

The Chicago resident may not be a chef at a restaurant with several Michelin stars, but as he expressed in the trailer, his food is good enough to put him at the top of the competition.

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Luke Kolpin

Luke Kolpin
Source: Emily Shur / Bravo

Prior to his participation on the culinary competition, Luke spent eight-and-a-half years as a chef in Copenhagen.

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When is the premiere date for 'Top Chef' Houston?

Now that we know the identities of the 15 stars competing in the QuickFire and Elimination Challenges, fans may be interested in finding out the premiere date.

Season 19 is set to kick off with a "supersized" episode on March 3 at 8 p.m. ET on Bravo.

After it premieres in March, Top Chef will continue to air on Thursdays at 8 p.m. ET. Episodes will also be available to stream on Peacock.

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