While the Brooklyn-based season of “Top Chef” is long gone (and they pretty much just choppered the chefs in and out of their digs at One Brooklyn Bridge Park to fancy kitchens in Manhattan anyway), former contestants from Padma and Tom’s (may we call you Padma and Tom?) talent factory are popping up all over the borough with new projects.
Mark Simmons (Season 4) has been working in Brooklyn for a while, running the kitchen at Melt in Park Slope. He recently opened his own restaurant, Kiwiana, on Union between 6th and 7th Ave, and the native New Zealander is serving lamb burgers, Manuka- and marmite-braised baby back ribs, and homemade vegetable pies to hungry Slope dwellers looking for a taste of Frodo’s favorite foods. (We know New Zealand isn’t actually Middle Earth, OK? Chill out.)
This summer, we told you about Dale Talde (also of Season 4) and his plans to open his own restaurant, Talde, also in Park Slope. (Is this a theme or a coincidence? Are Park Slope residents rabid Top Chef fans?) The Asian-American restaurant’s website says “Opening October 2011,” and since we assume no one on his staff wants to make Talde angry, those doors should be opening soon.
Most recently, the New York Times Diner’s Journal reported that Harold Dieterle, the winner of Season 1, is heading to Downtown Brooklyn to open a restaurant called The Marrow in the new Hotel 718 on Duffield. The menu will include “Ostrich schnizel with quark spaetzle, braised cuttlefish with garlic bread and cured pork, bison carpaccio with wild rocket, gooseberries and miso dressing, and straightforward steaks,” a little different from what he’s been praised for at Perilla and Kin Shop. Will Dieterle be enough to draw foodies to a luxury hotel in Downtown Brooklyn? We’ll see when The Marrow opens early next year.
Quickfire challenge: which Top Chef restaurants will survive Elimination in the competitive Brooklyn market? We’ll have to wait and see during the extremely drawn out and overly dramatic Judge’s Table. We sincerely hope no one has to take their knives and go.