Padma Lakshmi Talked About The Changes Made To 'Top Chef' Due To COVID-19

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Alexis Morillo
·2 min read
Padma Lakshmi Talked About The Changes Made To 'Top Chef' Due To COVID-19
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From Delish

Top Chef season 18 is premiering next month, and like most of your favorite reality TV series, it had to adjust its usual processes to be as safe as possible during the ongoing pandemic. Host Padma Lakshmi has been on the show since season two and talked about how this season will look different than in the past on a recent podcast.

Padma joined Deadline's "New Hollywood" podcast and talked about the upcoming season, most notably how the cooking competition has changed to keep cast, crew, and competitors all safe in a COVID-19 world. For one, unlike in the past when the chefs were able to spend 30 minutes in the grocery store picking up their ingredients, they instead had their groceries delivered. That, of course, added a unique challenge for the chefs as they had to think ahead of time about what exactly they'd need.

Additionally, the way the show is judged will also look different this time around, and a huge socially-distant judge's table is one visible change viewers will notice in season 18. Often in previous seasons, the show would bring in many different guest judges to taste and critique the dishes but the pandemic made that difficult as to not bring anyone into the Top Chef "bubble" late in the game. Instead, the guest judges will include Top Chef alumni that were once on the show themselves.

Photo credit: Hearst Owned
Photo credit: Hearst Owned

A trailer for the show confirmed that some classic challenges from the show like Top Chef drive-in and Restaurant Wars will still take place, as well as a clip that shows the competing chefs working with José Andrés and World Central Kitchen to feed healthcare workers. Top Chef Season 18 premieres on Thursday, April 1, at 8 p.m. EST on Bravo.

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