If you're a fan of Top Chef—and let's face it, other than last season, who isn't?—you no doubt have your favorites, regardless if they took top toque or not. We root on the chefs until either elimination or that crowning moment, but more goes into being named the best than just the final moment.
The Chicago Tribune compiled the Top Chef Power Index, scouring the first seven seasons leading up to the forthcoming all-star season, which kicks off Dec. 1. The ranking comprises a variety of factors, including staying power, quickfire wins, number of elimination wins and number of times the chef appeared in either the top or bottom elimination groups.
Stephanie Izard, who we all know won season four and opened Girl & The Goat this summer, lands at No. 1 with a power rating of 245. She had three quickfire wins, was in the bottom twice, the top six times and won five elimination challenges. Following up pretty closely were Kevin Gillespie (No. 2) and Michael Voltaggio (No. 3), both with a rating of 235.
The list is comprehensive, chronicling every chef to ever appear on the show (and some have negative ratings. Ouch). We're a little surprised that, while he came in second place in season three, that Dale Levitski ranks only No. 24 (at least he was ahead of both Marcel Vigeneron and Stephen Aspirino, but barely). That said, the Trib has a great disclaimer that talks about how the rankings were compiled and what outside factors (size of cast, for example) played into it. They ask us, while reading the list, to "please remember that 1) this is a reality show and 2) the mathematical difference between Otto Borsich and Preeti Mistry is not what anybody with graduate-level math skills would call 'statistically significant.'”
· Introducing the "Top Chef" Power Index [Tribune]