‘Top Chef Canada’ and ‘MasterChef’ winners launch culinary series for the visually impaired

Anne T. Donahue
·Blogger

Cool news alert: "Top Chef Canada" winner Carl Heinrich and "MasterChef" winner Christine Ha are launching a new culinary series for the blind and visually impaired, and it's all happening in Canada, reports TV Guide Canada.

Called "Four Senses," the 13-episode series will air on the Canadian network Accessible Media Inc., and will tape in Toronto. Promising to "focus on the broader discussion on disabilities and how people are breaking stereotypes," something tells us that by creating this program in the first place, they're taking a step in the right direction.

Fans of "MasterChef" may remember that Ha is visually impaired herself, but more importantly, she won Season 3 of the series (which included a $250, 000 prize and a cookbook deal). That's why "Four Senses" will work to obliterate stereotypes: Ha and Heinrich will describe and demonstrate ways to prepare dishes, talk to visually impaired triathletes and actors with macular degeneration, and stress the importance of getting accessible books into libraries -- as well as the science behind our senses, so we can actually understand them.

Obviously, this is terrific not only for the blind and visually-impaired, but also for other viewers. A series like "Four Senses" can educate those who don't know what it's like to rely primarily on only four senses, and in turn, we can advocate for proper books and programs because we can better understand (and respect) the challenges faced by those who struggle with their vision.

From the description, "Four Senses" seems like a program that advocates strength, confidence, and embracing one's abilities -- which is necessary to winning both "Top Chef Canada" and "MasterChef," and thus makes Ha and Heinrich prime hosts and creators. And by opening the show up to athletes and actors, not only do Ha and Heinrich show that cooking is for anybody, but that one is hardly alone in dealing with visual impairment.

The only thing that would make it better? To broadcast on more networks than AMI. Here's hoping another Canadian network gets wise and takes advantage of this unique, important program.