Geography of Top Chef


I don’t watch much TV, so you can imagine my dismay that Top Chef, one of the only shows I tune in to on a semi-regular basis, caps off season five tonight with the “reunion special.”

I like Top Chef for a number of reasons, the top two being (1) the creativity of the challenges, matched only by the skill of the chefs, and, of course, (2) the food (Note: Do not watch Top Chef, or any other culinary show, on an empty stomach: grumble)!

Food is rooted in geography from harvest to haute cuisine, as we’ve highlighted frequently on this blog (.e.g , Thirteen for Friday the 13th, Make Like the Pilgrims, Gas Prices and Tomatoes and Bees, Oh My!, Flavor Friday, etc). As I watched the Top Chef Season Finale last week, I couldn’t help but be reminded of this reality. Here’s a geographic look at season five:

Hosea Rosenberg traveled cross country from Boulder, Colorado, having spent the recent years of his career working in a seafood restaurant–interesting, as Colorado is one of the most landlocked U.S. states, with at least two states separating it from the ocean in any direction. For his final meal of the season, Hosea went with “flesh” selections reflecting both his culinary experience and his upbringing in the American West: seafood and venison.

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