Tom Colicchio []

Chef Tom Colicchio is more than just a pretty face. Most often recognized due to his stint as judge on Bravo’s Top Chef, Colicchio doesn’t just sit behind a table and critique ill-fated dishes delivered by nerve-wracked cheftestants every day.

He actually cooks in his kitchen.

It’s five o’clock on a Sunday in New York, and the eve of the James Beard Foundation Awards. Colicchio seems calm, cool, and collected as we take a seat in the dining room of Colicchio & Sons, despite being nominated for Outstanding Chef this year. Of course, he’s lost the award before.

“I don’t know how many times they’re going to nominate me in this category before they get tired of me,” he jokes. “They’ll finally say, ‘Just give it to him so we can get rid of him.’”

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Published on Daily Blender, June 2010

*Images: Jennifer Heigl / Daily Blender