Last night two Chicago natives faced off on the finale of Top Chef season 15. After a grueling competition, Joe Flamm, the executive chef at Michelin-starred Spiaggia and Café Spiaggia, emerged victorious. Flamm’s win is even more impressive if you consider the fact that he clawed his way back into the competition via an episode of companion web series Last Chance Kitchen after being eliminated from Top Chef in a quick-fire challenge. The hometown hero beat out Hyde Park native and New York chef Adrienne Cheatham for the $125,000 prize.
If you haven’t been keeping tabs on Top Chef since the early days, Flamm is the first Chicago-based chef to dominate the show since Stephanie Izard took home the title in 2008. Izard’s success has only ballooned since; she has three Chicago restaurants and a catering service and has started dabbling in the retail world with her cooking sauces and spice mixes. Here’s hoping Flamm’s return to reality is just as epic.