’s Chef’s Impact Report 2017 –

A decade ago, the foodies planning to attend the inaugural New York City Wine and Food Festival were firm believers in a buzz phrase of the era: “chefs are the new rock stars.” Celebrity in the culinary world back then was tied to having a series on the Food Network, PBS or a cabler such as Bravo, regular guest spots on the network morning shows and talk shows and a name that could topline a festival.

Today, as the TV landscape has favored competition above instruction and the internet has provided a platform for chefs, the definition of celebrity chef has changed. Creating a formula for Variety’s Chef’s Impact list would be foolhardy, but by weighing TV appearances, restaurants, online activity and the old standby, cookbooks, we have assembled the 2017 list. With an emphasis on chefs in L.A. and Gotham, here are the leading chefs balancing culinary skills and media presence.

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