The Truth About Roscoe Hall From Top Chef Season 18

Here we go! We've got another season of Top Chef, and this one (premiering Thursday, April 1, at 8:00 pm Eastern/Pacific) looks great. We're looking forward to meeting the 15 "cheftestants" and seeing what's in store for them in beautiful Portland, Oregon, where they will cook for our friends Padma Lakshmi, Tom Colicchio, and Gail Simmons. According to Bravo, Season 18 promises some new additions to the format, including a challenge in which teams of contestants will develop a "micro-restaurant" concept and create, execute, and serve a seven-course tasting menu.

One chef we're extremely excited to meet is Roscoe Hall of Birmingham, Alabama. A look at his Instagram profile shows that Hall isn't only a chef but a visual artist, working in oils and acrylics. And he's really good, like having his own art show good, according Bravo. But Hall calls himself the "Punk Rock Voice of Food," and it's this version of the man that Top Chef fans will be most interested in. "The renaissance man of Birmingham," as christened by The Local Palate, has an impressive résumé that includes (via Bravo) two years at Chez Panisse under the iconic Alice Waters, who makes time to video chat with the contestants this season, as seen in this preview.

Hall has traveled the country, working in New York under superstar David Chang at the Momofuku Saam Bar. He settled down near family in Birmingham, Alabama, running the culinary operations at a few restaurants and new concepts at foodie destination Pizitz Food Hall before getting the Top Chef call.

Roscoe Hall is an activist and artist at heart

Roscoe Hall is a high-profile activist against food insecurity and inequity in Birmingham. In a panel about the local food scene, Hall said he is a "bitter" chef. "You can always fight back through food," he said. "You can always love people through food" (via At the event, Hall railed against "elitist" foodies who boost their egos by posting photos of themselves and/or their plates at expensive restaurants. 

Hall's service mindset extends to a local clinic for eating disorders, where he cooks for the clients and talks to them about cooking. He also volunteers his time working with kids at a teaching farm, trying to de-program their McDonald's mindsets and teaching them about food (via In addition, Hall has a hilarious Punk as F*od Tumblr about food styling, and occasionally, he hosts a "knife party," which he describes as a "random and kind of sketchy" event for a very small group who pay to receive GPS coordinates just prior to the fete. Hall also does big-ticket personal chef gigs and doesn't apologize for capitalizing on his talent to pay the bills and free up time for his passions.

A Master of Fine Arts, Hall says 2020 brought clarity. On Instagram, he wrote, "The pandemic cleared my head of what is important. The kids, wifey, love for cooking, and painting just slaps so hard. [...] Let's get it y'all."

How will all of this translate to his performance on Top Chef? We can't wait to find out.