Padma Lakshmi, an American TV host and writer of Indian descent, is leaving “Top Chef,” the reality cooking program she has anchored since its second season, according to “Variety.”
‘Top Chef’ Season 20 will be her final season with the adored Bravo cooking competition series, the reality show revealed on social media.
“After much soul-searching, I have made the difficult decision to leave ‘Top Chef’,” Padma wrote in a statement. “Having completed a glorious 20th season as host and executive producer, I am extremely proud to have been part of building such a successful show and of the impact it has had in the worlds of television and food.”
Continuing with her announcement post, quoted by ‘Variety’, Padma Lakshmi said: “After 17 years, many of the cast and crew are like family to me and I will miss working alongside them dearly. I feel it’s time to move on and need to make space for [her travel and food show] ‘Taste the Nation’, my books and other creative pursuits.”
The first season of “Top Chef,” which was filmed in San Francisco and was hosted by Katie Lee Joel, aired in 2006. Having debuted in Season 2, Padma Lakshmi has hosted the program for 19 seasons.
‘Variety’ claims that her talent for hosting and compatibility with judges Gail Simmons and Tom Colicchio made ‘Top Chef’ a reality competition show hit.
Padma has received four Emmy nominations for outstanding reality show host as a result of her work as a host on “Top Chef”. As the show’s producer, she has received an additional 10 Emmy nominations for outstanding competition program.