The purpose of doing a TV food show for an “brand name” chef is to drive traffic to their restaurants, increase catering sales, sell other branded items and cookbooks, and lure more investment for future projects.
From August 4-8, 2010, Groupon is offering consumers a discount coupon for meals at eight restaurants run by contestants on Top Chef and Top Chef Masters. The participating restaurants include:
• Alchemy Caterers, Washington, D.C. – owned by Carla Hall from season five
• Iluna Basque, San Francisco, CA – owned by Mattin Noblia from season six
• Pura Vida, Atlanta, GA – owned by Hector Santiago from season six
• Super Pan, Atlanta, GA – owned by Hector Santiago from season six
• D. Rodriguez Cuba, Miami, FL – owned by Douglas Rodriguez from “Top Chef Masters” season one
• D. Rodriguez Ocean, Miami, FL – owned by Douglas Rodriguez from “Top Chef Masters” season one
• Ola at Sanctuary, Miami, FL – owned by Douglas Rodriguez from “Top Chef Masters” season one
• The Point, Culver City, CA – owned by Mark Peel from “Top Chef Masters” season two
Presumably, this is the first of many deals to promote Top Chef and other TV shows through deals with contestants.
What is odd is that there aren’t more restaurateurs participating who have appeared on the show. Most conspicuously absent are restaurants owned/create by Top Chef’s host, Tom Colicchio. Perhaps Tom is driving enough business already and discounts at his restaurants aren’t necessary. Too bad for fans.