The Next Iron Chef is a limited-run series on the Food Network that aired its fifth season in 2012. Each season is a stand-alone competition to select a chef to be designated an Iron Chef, who will appear on the Food Network program Iron Chef America.
In Season 1, eight chefs from around the United States battled to be the next Iron Chef. The show debuted Sunday, October 7, 2007, and the hosts were Alton Brown and "The Chairman", Mark Dacascos. Challenges one through five of the competition were held at the Culinary Institute of America. Challenges six and seven took place in Munich, Germany and Paris, France respectively. The final challenge took place at the Food Network studios in New York City, on the Iron Chef America set. The winner of The Next Iron Chef was Cleveland restaurant chef Michael Symon.
Season 2 premiered on October 4, 2009, and featured ten chefs battling to be the newest Iron Chef. The show was based in Los Angeles before traveling to Tokyo for two episodes, and again hosted by Alton Brown and "The Chairman" Mark Dacascos. Following a final battle in Kitchen Stadium, Chicago-born Ecuadorian-American chef Jose Garces, was selected the newest Iron Chef. Garces debuted as an Iron Chef on January 17, 2010, when he squared off against Seattle chef Rachel Yang.
Food Network began airing commercials for the third season of The Next Iron Chef in July 2010. It was later announced in an internet press release that Alton Brown and judge Donatella Arpaia would return for season 3. Completing the judges panel are food writer and broadcaster Simon Majumdar and current Iron Chef Michael Symon. Season 3 began airing on October 3, 2010 on Food Network. The winner of season 3 was Marc Forgione. Chef Forgione engaged in his first battle on November 28, 2010. By November 30, 2010, Next Iron Chef's music composer Craig Marks released the soundtrack "Iron Chef America & The Next Iron Chef", which contains themes from all seasons of both shows.
During Season 4, the eliminated chefs were interviewed during the week following the episode airdate on ABC's The Chew. The first castoff was interviewed on November 1, 2011.
Season 5 aired from November 4, 2012 to December 23, 2012 and was called The Next Iron Chef: Redemption.