This happens tonight. Photo via Bravo.

 Now that Election Day has passed, we can turn our attention from representative democracy and securing the leader of the free world to matters of real substance—hyperedited culinary reality shows. In other words: Squeee! Top Chef Seattle is here (here's how the city made it happen). The premiere airs tonight at 10. But it’s shame to take in all this glorious reality TV solo.

Quite frankly we’re surprised at the lack of Top Chef viewing parties around town, but bars might be feeling the fatigue of a busy week filled with Halloween, election night, and a number of MurrayAid events. So thank goodness for Team Douglas and the festivity-minded folks at Bottleneck Lounge. Details on their parties are below…along with a lengthy sneak peek at the first episode.

Tom Douglas at Palace Ballroom
T-Doug will hold court with chef/wingman Thierry Rautureau as the episode airs on four giant screens. Tickets are $20 and get you Top Chef-inspired bites and a glass of wine. Douglas (and Rautureau) will appear in episodes later this season. And given T-Doug’s penchant for candor, his commentary should be good times...though he probably won't have much to say about Padma's outfits. Get your tickets right over here.

Jason Stratton at Bottleneck Lounge
The Spinasse and Artusi chef is known for badass cookery, sharp dressing, and his professed love of Top Chef. When he was named a Food and Wine Best New Chef in 2010, Stratton confessed in his interview that he likes to watch the show at Bottleneck Lounge. Being the savvy businesswoman that she is, owner Erin Nestor has Stratton cohosting tonight’s festivities. Grab a seat at the bar, order a PBR tallboy and a shot of Evan Williams bourbon for $7. Bottleneck’s addictive black truffle popcorn is on the house during the show. The party starts at 9, but Nestor recommends getting there early.

Also, Bravo released this trio of videos showing aspiring contestants competing for a ticket to Seattle. At least one ridiculous mustache is involved. Does a single season go by without some contestant (man or woman) gushing about Tom Colicchio being a dreamboat? Rebekah Denn also has a nice interview with Padma over at the Seattle Times. I, uh, can't imagine why the publicity team didn't contact us.


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