Shanti, who made it to the top six on Season 19 of “Top Chef,” brings a unique background of Black Appalachian cuisine to the position. She previously served as the chef de cuisine at Benne on Eagle in Asheville, North Carolina and last year opened a fish fry restaurant called Good Hot Fish in South Asheville.
“Appalachian cuisine is very special to me and my heritage,” Shanti said. “My mom’s family is from a tiny Southwest Virginia town called Hillsville, Virginia. The food is very distinct and special. As a chef, I’m inspired by my travels and experiencing the food of the places around me.”