City & State or ZIP Tonight, this weekend, May 5th...
City & State or ZIP
City & State or ZIP Tonight, this weekend, May 5th...
City & State or ZIP

Table 1280 chef Tracey Bloom to appear on “Top Chef: D.C.”


Bravo TV has announced the cast for its newest season of  “Top Chef,” which debuts June 16th and will take place in Washington, D.C.

The lone Atlantan among the 17 contestants will be Table 1280 chef Tracey Bloom. (Table 1280 is the restaurant at the Woodruff Arts Center.)

You can read Bloom’s  bio here.

And you can read Meridith Ford Goldman’s favorable review of Bloom’s cooking here.

12 comments Add your comment


May 13th, 2010
3:30 pm

ha! Now Table 1280 just got a BIG boost in their numbers for the next year. I really think Top Chef is helping others see Atlanta as a food city that can compete with the big boys. I wonder if Rathbun would be on this or Top Chef Masters, and how he would do???


May 13th, 2010
3:49 pm

Looks like there is also a former Atlantan in the contest too.

John Kessler

May 13th, 2010
3:53 pm

Good catch, Gern!

John Kessler

May 13th, 2010
3:59 pm

FYI: Here’s my 1998 review of Grappa, Gigliotti’s Buckhead restaurant:

Call it the Maple Street Drag.
From the newly opened Grappa, down to Soleil, Hedgerose and Riviera across the way, there’s now a veritable restaurant row along this quiet side street of Buckhead. Four attractively converted homes. Four French or French-trained chefs. Four classy venues for European-style dining.
So where does Grappa fit into the mix? Well, it’s not as casual as Soleil, not as swank as Hedgerose, not as accomplished as Riviera. You don’t go here for an impromptu meal or a special occasion, but rather to meet friends for dinner or someone special for a date. From the moment you spy Grappa’s front gate, a kind of wrought-iron grapevine canopy, this place feels like a night in Buckhead.
Owners Lynne Gigliotti and Danny Cosenzi set a tone that is both comfortable and fancy. Comfortable is the warren of rooms in this converted house, each sponge-painted a different warm color. Comfortable is the snug bar set by the entrance, and comfortable is the laid-back style of service.
But fancy is the classical music wafting through the building, the high gloss of the hardwood floors and the subdued lighting as gentle on your face as Oil of Olay. Fancy are the prices (entrees mostly in the low $20s), and fancy is the food — pretty, sophisticated, but perhaps a bit fussy at times.
Gigliotti and her chef de cuisine Christophe Vessaire bring impressive cooking credentials to the table. She worked with Guenter Seeger at the Dining Room at the Ritz-Carlton Buckhead, then ran the Grapevine Cafe; he was in the kitchen at Washington’s famed Jean-Louis before coming to Atlanta to open what was Resto des Amis.
Their strong suit is first impressions. A gazpacho of roasted yellow tomatoes is studded with crunchy vegetable bits and depth-charged with flavor. With its garnish of avocado mousse and a crispy toast spear, it tastes as complex as it looks.
The house salad — a robust heap of greens with shiitake mushrooms, marinated red onions, good tomatoes and sweet-tart port vinaigrette — is almost worth its hefty ($8) price. A tasty Caesar salad made with tender red romaine leaves and a pretty Parmesan tuile is the kind of knife-and-fork salad you can’t wait to dig into.
The quartet of appetizers on the menu is so well-conceived and executed that it should appeal to every mood and every kind of diner. The tuna tartare (prepared in the style of the Hawaiian dish called “poke”) is roundly seasoned with pickled ginger, chives and lemon zest, then topped with a mound of beautiful seaweed salad. Rope-cultured mussels are steamed until just tender with garlic, onions, saffron and a hint of grappa. A terrine of grilled Mediterranean veggies is layered with herbed goat cheese and set over a tomato vinaigrette. And jumbo asparagus are served warm with memorable goat cheese and chive-stuffed blinis and tomato compote.
After these original, satisfying starters, entrees can seem a bit of a letdown. Pretty little slices of veal loin fanned around a mound of pasty mushroom risotto and set with a couple of vegetables placed just so doesn’t really cut it for $26. Same goes for the pretty little slices of duck breast set around a cloying pineapple compote.
The pretty little slices of rosemary chicken breast are pretty darn pink but tasty, with their lemon-caper reduction and great garlic mashed potatoes.
The fish is better here. Excellent Atlantic salmon is expertly seared and paired with a light but captivating garnish of zucchini “spaghetti” and white beans in a saffron broth. One night’s swordfish special comes on a vibrantly herbed plateful of zucchini, potatoes and onions. And huge lobster-corn ravioli are supple and sexy on a velvety fresh corn sauce.
Yet halibut is thoroughly overwhelmed by its bed of sweet, sweet beets and its thick, soggy crust of butter, bread crumbs and green herbs. Sometimes it seems that appearance is the main consideration in this kitchen.
That can certainly be true with desserts. There’s a white chocolate mousse gussied up with so many chocolate decorations and dollops of cream and banana compote that you can never identify the white chocolate. There’s a creme brulee with a crust thick enough to ice skate on and so many dried cherries in the custard that it ceases to register as creme brulee. The best dessert is fudgy warm chocolate cake that’s so intense it speaks for itself.
A little more attention could go to training the service staffers, who are nice but awkward in their roles. Twice, our first impression was of a host who couldn’t find our name in the reservation book. When I asked a passing waitress for a spoon, our own waiter later interrupted our conversation to ask if we’d gotten it, rather than just looking. Meanwhile, the bartender identifies a mark of Italian grappa, the spirit distilled from grape pressings, by the town in which it is made rather than the well-known producer.
Give it time. After just three months, Grappa is still a work in progress. I think it understands its niche — fancy and comfortable — but it’s still working through the particulars.


May 13th, 2010
4:39 pm

Tracey, I’ll be first to say that I’ll be watching and pulling for you the entire way and into the finals. Lots of AJC exposure coming your way. Atlanta is overdue for a winner, and I’m sure you’ll do us proud!Go, girl!

Laura G

May 13th, 2010
4:40 pm

Congratulations, Tracey. I’ll be cheering for you. I love your Italian sausages and the salmon and couscous dish.


May 13th, 2010
4:55 pm

There was a real dearth of southern or Atlanta contestants on TC:M this year — one reason I haven’t been as into it this year.

Eric Ripert is the new judge (replace Toby). Awesome.


May 13th, 2010
5:30 pm

@bbb can you recommend Rathburn….can’t seem to get a decent meal at any of his restaurants…

kevin mac

May 13th, 2010
5:49 pm

That dude is a tool. Total jackass that thinks he’s too cool for everyone but his food sucks.

William Babcock

May 13th, 2010
6:11 pm

Kevin, Please stop your bong hits


May 16th, 2010
11:33 am

Great review of Chef Gigliotti and her restaurant! Cudos to Chef for going to NY to help others pursue their passion for food at CIA. Damn, that girl can cook! And she is a hottie too!

Craig - The real Criag

June 14th, 2010
3:54 pm

So you are saying that Table 1280 might actually get reservations.. Never seen that place to have more than 25% occupancy.