Padma is the show’s primary eye candy. Tom has turned more than a few heads as the loveable, improbably sexy, teddy bear of a chef, and Ted was already a familiar TV personality due to his stints as a regular on Queer Eye for the Straight Guy and a frequent judge on Iron Chef America. However, Gail Simmons is a bit more prickly at times (just look at that serious pose at right) and lacks the obvious fan club. However, she comes with serious culinary training and experience and none of the judges is better at delivering difficult but true observations when things go awry on Top Chef.
Gail Simmons hails from Canada, but her culinary training is from the Institute of Culinary Education in New York. She began working for Food and Wine magazine in 2004 and is in charge of special events. This means she is in charge of the annual Food and Wine Classic in Aspen, one of the top foodie events of the year. This event has featured demonstrations by such illustrious chefs as Jacques Pepin, Wolfgang Puck, and Mario Batali.
Earlier in her career, Gail Simmons worked for Daniel Boulud and his group of restaurants managing special events and publicity. It is no surprise then that Boulud will be the guest judge on this week’s Top Chef. Wisely, avoiding any possible conflicts of interest, Gail Simmons will be away from the judging table this week. In an interesting personal aside, Gail Simmons is the only current Top Chef judge who has not made her birth date and age public. TV Robot refers to her as the JD Salinger of the table. A little mystery can be a good thing, so raise a glass of wine in toast to Gail Simmons, 1/4 of one of the best judging teams on televison.
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