A Houston chef has packed her knives and gone to London. Dawn Burrell will be one of the 16 competitors on Top Chef's 20th season, Bravo announced.
Burrell, who reached the finals of Top Chef season 18 in Portland, Oregon, earned a James Beard semifinalist nomination for her work at downtown restaurant Kulture. The former Olympian-turned-chef will open Late August, a restaurant that explores the intersection of African and Asians cuisines, in the Ion mixed-use development later this spring.
“I’m a natural competitor, so I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to compete on the Top Chef stage again to try to bring home the win," Burrell said in a statement. "All in all, it was truly an honor to be selected for this All Stars season — the first across the pond!”
She will compete against an all-star cast of former Top Chef competitors from 11 seasons, including Buddha Lo, winner of last year's season 19 in Houston. The cast also has a global flavor with winners and finalists from Top Chef's international editions in Brazil, Canada, France, Germany, the Middle East & North Africa, Italy, Spain, Mexico, and Poland.
Such an accomplished group merits an equally compelling set of challenges. Over the course of the season, viewers will watch the cheftestants put their spins on British classics such as beef Wellington, afternoon tea, and pub fare. They'll cook at prominent London destinations including Highclere Castle and Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.
For the signature Restaurant Wars episode, the chefs will cook at Core by Clare Smyth, a London restaurant that holds three Michelin stars. The finale will take place in Paris and feature an appearance by legendary French chef Alain Ducasse.
Top Chef stars Tom Colicchio, Gail Simmons, and Padma Lakshmi will all return to the show. They'll be joined by a number of prominent chefs including the aforementioned Clare Smyth as well as Aquiles Chavez, Hélène Darroze, Martha Ortiz, and Dave Zilber (Judge, Top Chef Canada).
Top Chef season 20 will premier at 8 pm on Thursday, March 9. Episodes will be available the following day on the Peacock streaming service.
Here's a sneak peek at the action.