Tom Colicchio returns as lead judge for Food Network's Top Chef and also serves as mentor to the competing chefs on the series, guiding them through their various challenges.
In July of 1994, Colicchio, along with partner Danny Meyer, opened Gramercy Tavern in Manhattan's Gramercy Park neighborhood. His cooking at Gramercy earned consistent recognition: After three nominations for James Beard’s Best Chef NY Award, he won it in 2000. One year later in March 2001, and one block south of Gramercy Tavern, Colicchio opened Craft. His first cookbook, Think Like a Chef, published by Clarkson-Potter, won a James Beard KitchenAid Cookbook Award in May 2001. This same year, Gramercy Tavern was awarded for Outstanding Service. In 2002, Craft was awarded the James Beard Best New Restaurant Award and Gramercy Tavern's sommelier won for Outstanding Wine Service. In October 2002, Colicchio received Bon Appétit and the Food Network's Award for Chef of the Year in their American Food and Entertaining Awards. After opening Craft and Craftbar in New York City, Colicchio opened Craftsteak at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas in July 2002. In spring 2003, Wichcraft opened – a sandwich shop rooted in the same food and hospitality philosophies as Craft. Wichcraft now has six New York City locations, one in Las Vegas and one in San Francisco.
In January 2010, he opened Colicchio & Sons in New York. At Colicchio & Sons, he improvises with small-batch ingredients from the micro-producers and family farmers with whom he has forged decades-long relationships. The restaurant earned three stars from The New York Times. Later that year, Colicchio opened Riverpark in New York with chef and partner Sisha Ortuzar. Riverpark features views of the East River and an urban farm supplying produce to the restaurant.
Most recently, he has opened the restaurant at Topping Rose House, a new inn he will operate in Bridgehampton, New York. The full property will debut in early 2013.