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Local chef will compete on TV's 'Top Chef'

Joshua Valentine, who grew up in Del City and learned to cook as a member of The Coach House Apprenticeship Program, is Oklahoma's first contestant on Bravo's “Top Chef.”
by Dave Cathey Published: September 26, 2012

As exciting as it is to have an Oklahoma chef participate in such a prestigious competition, there was a price to pay. Divine Swine will not reopen as once hoped.

Valentine recently took a job as pastry chef for a new restaurant in Dallas, FT33, with chef Matt McCallister, with whom he worked in the kitchen of Stephan Pyles Restaurant.

Valentine, 33, graduated from The Coach House Apprenticeship Program in February 2009 before going to Dallas. His work at SPR so impressed Pyles that he made him a part of the team at Samar by Stephan Pyles when it opened in November 2009.

When Valentine's father became gravely ill early in 2010, the young chef returned home to be closer to him and took a job at The Coach House. His father died in March 2010, and Valentine continued at The Coach House until he and Courtney saved enough money to open Divine Swine.

“Top Chef: Seattle” premieres Nov. 7. Valentine will compete against 20 other chefs from across the country.

World-famous chef and restaurateur Wolfgang Puck, who owns a restaurant in Tulsa, joins the show as a judge this season, alongside Tom Colicchio, Gail Simmons, Hugh Acheson and Emeril Lagasse, with Padma Lakshmi returning as host, as the 21 chefs compete for the $125,000 prize.

Look for watch parties to pop up at The Lobby Bar with some of his Coach House brethren.

Also look for me to dust off the “Top Chef” podcast on once the show begins to air.