Three fan-favorite cheftestants from the past two seasons will vie for a shot back into the competition.

By Adam Campbell-Schmitt
November 29, 2018
Courtesy of NBCUniversal; NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images

The sixteenth season of Top Chef will hit Bravo on December 6, which means another season of chefs battling it out for the coveted title while taking in the landscape and flavors of an American culinary destination (in this case, Kentucky). But as anyone who follows the series religiously knows, the return of Top Chef also means the return of another, adjacent cooking competition: the Emmy-winning Last Chance Kitchen.

Hosted by Top Chef judge Tom Colicchio, LCK pits three chefs against one another in a do or die challenge, with the losing chef packing their knives for good. Each week, the eliminated chef from Top Chef is hurled directly into the fire of LCK and must prove their worth for a shot at sticking around until, at multiple points during the season, Colicchio will let a winning chef move back onto the show. For those eliminated, it’s a potential lifeline to stay in the running, while for the slate of chefs below it’s an opportunity to return to Top Chef altogether.

Here are the chefs returning for season 8 of Top Chef: Last Chance Kitchen:

From season 14, Jim Smith is hitting LCK after a one-season break to take a shot at taking another shot at Top Chef. Smith is the executive chef of the State of Alabama (meaning he cooks for the governor and other high-profile Alabamans), the chairman of the Alabama Seafood Marketing Commission, and is about to open The Hummingbird Way, an oyster bar in Mobile, AL.

From season 15, Carrie Baird and Brother Luck will take another run at the title. Both were “hometown” favorites in the Colorado season, with Baird at Bar Dough in Denver and Luck running Four by Brother Luck in Colorado Springs. Baird was a fan-favorite who caught some flack for her (challenge-winning) fancy toasts, while Luck was known for fusing elements of his mixed-race heritage, Asian and European influences from his childhood, and Colorado ingredients.

Take a look at the sneak peek of Last Chance Kitchen below:

Last season proved LCK was well worth watching, as two chefs entered or reentered the competition via the web series. First, season one competitor Lee Anne Wong worked her way back into Top Chef contention, however, she was also pregnant at the time, and health complications forced her to withdraw from the show. And perhaps more surprisingly, Chef Joe Flamm was knocked out in episode nine of season 15 only to return in episode 11 and, you know, win the whole freaking thing.

Top Chef: Last Chance Kitchen streams at Bravotv.com/TopChef immediately following Top Chef episodes which begin airing Thursday, December 6 at 9 p.m. ET on Bravo.

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