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Fast Foodies Chef Kristen Kish on Reimagining Drive-Through Classics

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The Simpsons, “like eat at Arby’s.” The implication of the animated show’s repeated ribbing of the fast-food chain over the years is that even this all-American hetero workingman’s family would be hardpressed to find something redeeming at the eatery.So it’s unexpected to have a top chef (and Top Chef winner) cite Arby’s as a culinary influence. (OK, it’s no Tim Gunn admitting to pandemic lounging in sweats, but still.) Although she may not go there for “the meats,” which is what the chain’s ads currently promote, Korean-American chef Kristen Kish acknowledges her drive-through favorites include “fried chicken in any form and french fries — always.

Curly fries for the win if you can find an Arby’s!”But Kish is not your typical chef, and she wasn’t your typical reality contestant in 2012 when she was on the 10th season of Top Chef and made an unprecedented comeback.

After being eliminated, Kish not only returned to the show courtesy of the web series Last Chance Kitchen, she went on to win the Top Chef prize.

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