Canada gets its own Top Chef; wild speculation ensues
News came over the wire today that Canwest is producing a Canadian version of Top Chef that will air on the Food Network next spring, but few details about the show (casting, filming dates, judges, etc.) have been released yet. All we know is that the network has posted a video asking fans to pitch them challenge ideas (read: we’re exploiting Internet users as free labour).
It’s difficult to predict who the contestants might be since there’s no mention of established chefs, but we are willing to speculate that there will be some George Brown graduates butting heads with one or two self-employed caterers. As for the Padma role, Canwest might be keeping it in the family by hiring someone already employed by Food Network Canada (Kevin Brauch might be a good choice, since he’s already done Iron Chef). Anyone but Nadia Giosia from Bitchin’ Kitchen would be good. When it comes to judges and guest judges, we’re betting on such Food Network faces as Lynn Crawford, Mark McEwan, Bob Blumer, Michael Smith and David Adjey to make appearances in order to up the star power.
The obvious elephant in the dining room is how low-rent this is going to look compared to its American counterpart. (Remember the first season of Canada’s Next Top Model, when the contestants went through model boot camp in Victoria?) Of course, it’s unfair to compare Top Chef’s NBC-sized budget to what Canwest can muster. As long as it doesn’t look like it was shot in someone’s basement over the long weekend or involve dollar-store cooking challenges, we’re happy.