It was only a matter of time. Now that New Orleans cooking’s veritable mascot Emeril Lagasse has been a regular judge on popular Bravo cooking reality series Top Chef for two seasons, it’s no surprise that the show will head to his adopted hometown for its 11th round. Lagasse, who owns three New Orleans restaurants, brought Cajun cooking into the mainstream with his shows on the Food Network, his best-selling cookbooks, and appearances on Good Morning America. Season 10 of Top Chef wrapped in February and was set in Seattle. Previous iterations of the show have featured San Francisco, Los Angeles, Miami, Chicago, New York, Las Vegas, Washington, D.C., and various locations in Texas during season 9.
Here’s the full statement from Bravo:
Bravo Media’s Top Chef, in partnership with the New Orleans Tourism Marketing Corporation and the Louisiana Office of Tourism, are pleased to announce that the new season of the Emmy and James Beard Award-winning show will take place in New Orleans. The vibrant food scene of New Orleans will be a welcome addition in the 11th season of the series.
Head judge Tom Colicchio and various guest judges on the show are hardly strangers to New Orleans, either — Colicchio and frequent guest judge Anthony Bourdain have both appeared on HBO’s Treme and New Orleans chef John Besh was featured on Top Chef: Masters and was a guest judge in the season 5 finale of Top Chef, which was also set in New Orleans. No premiere date has yet been set for the new season.