|Top Chef: Los Angeles|
|Hosted by||Padma Lakshmi|
|No. of contestants||15|
|Country of origin||United States|
|No. of episodes||13|
|Original release||October 18, 2006 –|
January 31, 2007
Top Chef: Los Angeles is the second season of the American reality television series Top Chef. It was first filmed in Los Angeles, before concluding in Waikoloa Village, Hawaii. The season premiered on October 18, 2006 and ended on January 31, 2007. Padma Lakshmi replaced Katie Lee Joel as the host, with Tom Colicchio and Gail Simmons returning as judges. The winning recipe from each week's episode was featured on Bravo's Top Chef website and prepared by Season 1 contestant Lee Anne Wong in a web video called The Wong Way to Cook. Bravo cited negative viewer reaction to the Season 2 chefs' attitudes and overall behavior as the reason why no reunion episode was filmed. In the season finale, Ilan Hall was declared the winner over runner-up Marcel Vigneron. Sam Talbot was voted Fan Favorite.
Fifteen chefs were selected to compete in Top Chef: Los Angeles.
|Elia Aboumrad||Las Vegas, Nevada||23|
|Otto Borsich||Las Vegas, Nevada||46|
|Marisa Churchill||San Francisco, California||28|
|Cliff Crooks||West Caldwell, New Jersey||28|
|Carlos Fernandez||Fort Lauderdale, Florida||36|
|Betty Fraser||Los Angeles, California||44|
|Mia Gaines-Alt||Oakdale, California||32|
|Ilan Hall||New York, New York||24|
|Michael Midgley||Lodi, California||28|
|Josie Smith-Malave||Brooklyn, New York||31|
|Emily Sprissler||Las Vegas, Nevada||30|
|Suyai Steinhauer||New York, New York||29|
|Sam Talbot||New York, New York||28|
|Frank Terzoli||San Diego, California||39|
|Marcel Vigneron||Las Vegas, Nevada||26|
Marcel Vigneron and Elia Aboumrad returned to compete in Top Chef: All-Stars. Josie Smith-Malave returned for Top Chef: Seattle. Vigneron later competed in Top Chef Duels, and returned again for Top Chef: Colorado, competing in the Last Chance Kitchen. Sam Talbot returned for Top Chef: Charleston.
|Contestant||Elimination Challenge Results|
^Note 1 : The chef(s) did not receive immunity for winning the Quickfire Challenge.
^Note 2 : Otto voluntarily withdrew before Lakshmi eliminated anyone, deciding that his misconduct over the unpaid lychees contributed the most to his team's loss.
^Note 3 : After allegations of cheating, the judges decided not to eliminate anyone. Consequently, two chefs were eliminated in the following episode.
^Note 4 : There were five winners in the Quickfire Challenge. These winners did not compete in the Elimination Challenge.
^Note 5 : Mia voluntarily withdrew before Lakshmi eliminated anyone, fearing Elia would be eliminated.
^Note 6 : Following the Elimination Challenge, no winning team was declared. The Bottom 3 was decided based on each chef's individual performance.
^Note 7 : Cliff was disqualified for aggressive physical contact with Marcel. No one else was eliminated going into the finale.
Main article: List of Top Chef episodes
|Title||Original air date|
|13||1||"Into the Fire"||October 18, 2006|
Quickfire Challenge: The chefs created flambé dishes in a limited amount of time. The winner received immunity from elimination.
Elimination Challenge: The chefs were required to prepare a dish using the five ingredients provided in a mystery crate. The contestants were separated into two groups and received different crates. The teams took turns serving their dishes to the judges and the other group of contestants.
|14||2||"Eastern Promise"||October 25, 2006|
Quickfire Challenge: Each chef created a sushi dish in a limited amount of time. The winner received immunity from elimination.
Elimination Challenge: The contestants were split into two teams: Team Vietnam and Team Korea. Each team had to prepare two dishes using the flavors of their assigned country to serve at a charity fundraiser for 1,000 people. The winner received a limited-edition Kyocera KT-300-HIP Kyotop 8.25" ceramic sashimi knife.
|15||3||"Food for the People"||November 1, 2006|
Quickfire Challenge: The chefs had to create an original ice cream flavor and serve it at the Redondo Beach Seaside Lagoon. The winner received immunity from elimination.
Elimination Challenge: The chefs had to create a dish updating a "childhood classic" to fit the menu of T.G.I. Friday's that would be served to the firemen of South Pasadena. The winning entrée would be featured nationwide on the menu of T.G.I. Friday's.
|16||4||"Less is More"||November 8, 2006|
Elimination Challenge: The 12 chefs were divided into four teams and were required to create a meal that did not exceed 500 calories (2,100 kJ) to serve at a camp for diabetic and overweight children. The winner received a cookbook written by guest judge Suzanne Goin and an opportunity to collaborate on one of Goin's famed Sunday supper menus for her Lucques restaurant.
|17||5||"Social Service"||November 15, 2006|
Quickfire Challenge: Each chef created a dish using offal, the leftover parts of animals.
Elimination Challenge: Working in teams of two, the chefs had to create a six-course lunch for Jennifer Coolidge and 60 of her guests using only the ingredients that were already available in the kitchen. An opportunity to work with Michelle Bernstein at the Sagamore Hotel in Miami on the Food Network South Beach Wine and Food Festival.
|18||6||"Thanksgiving"||November 22, 2006|
Quickfire Challenge: The remaining chefs created dishes using three different canned foods in 15 minutes. The winners of the challenge were able to skip the Elimination Challenge altogether.
Elimination Challenge: The five chefs who did not win the Quickfire Challenge (Marcel, Elia, Michael, Betty, and Carlos) worked together to make a cutting edge Thanksgiving dinner for the judges, guest judge Anthony Bourdain, and the other Top Chef contestants, using the kitchens in the loft.
|19||7||"The Raw and the Cooked"||December 6, 2006|
Elimination Challenge: The chefs were told by Lakshmi that they had to prepare breakfast for athletes. The cooking environment and available tools were unknown to the contestants until their arrival at the challenge. In the challenge, the chefs cooked for surfers at dawn on the beach using only a fire pit and basic kitchen tools. Rafael Lunetta guest judges.
|20||8||"Holiday Spirit"||December 13, 2006|
Quickfire Challenge: The chefs made a Bailey's Irish Cream mix drink and an accompanying dish. The winner received immunity from elimination.
Elimination Challenge: Working in two teams of four, the chefs catered the Los Angeles magazine holiday party at the Warner Bros. movie lot. The winner received a 20-piece set of Global knives. Ted Allen guest judges.
|21||9||"Seven"||January 3, 2007|
Quickfire Challenge: Each chef drew a knife that showed a different color. The chefs then had to create a dish based on the color drawn from the knife block. From this point on, the winner of the Quickfire Challenge no longer received immunity from elimination.
Elimination Challenge: The chefs prepared a seven-course meal, with each course representing one of the Seven Deadly Sins. The sins were drawn from the knife block, but Michael, as the Quickfire winner, was given the opportunity to swap his sin, Lust, for Marcel's Envy. Debi Mazar made a guest appearance, and her favorite chef in Los Angeles, Roberto Ivan, appeared as the guest judge in addition to Ted Allen.
|22||10||"Unhappy Customers"||January 10, 2007|
Elimination Challenge: Similar to the standard Restaurant Wars format, the contestants, divided into two teams, devised a concept, interior design, and menu for a raw restaurant space. Sam and Marcel, as the Quickfire winners, chose their teammates. Mike Yakura guest judges.
|23||11||"Sense and Sensuality"||January 17, 2007|
Elimination Challenge: The chefs worked together to create a romantic five-course menu for celebratory couples in Santa Barbara. Sam, as the Quickfire Challenge winner, was allowed to choose which course he wanted to execute and which proteins he was going to use. The remaining contestants were not allowed to use the same proteins that Sam chose. Sam elected to cook the first course and use lobster and scallops as his proteins. Éric Ripert guest judges.
|24||12||"Hawaii Finale, Part 1"||January 24, 2007|
Elimination Challenge: Each chef made two dishes based on classic Hawaiian dishes with a twist. Each chef had to combine their signature style with traditional Hawaiian flavors and cuisine.
|25||13||"Hawaii Finale, Part 2"||January 31, 2007|