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Top Chef Challenge Ideas from Local Top Chefs; Food Industry Romances

Plus, more recommended reading from around the food web.

The Kirkland Tap & Trotter
The Kirkland Tap & Trotter
Rachel Leah Blumenthal for Eater

HUB-WIDE — The 12th season of the Bravo reality show Top Chef, which was filmed around Boston, wrapped up last night, naming — SPOILER ALERT — Mei Lin the eponymous winner. In celebration of the season finale, the folks at decided to ask some of the area's best chefs how they would challenge competitive cooks. The 11 responses, from the likes of Tony Maws (Craigie on MainKirkland Tap & Trotter), Jody Adams (Rialto, Trade), and others, are an entertaining list of suggested challenges. From properly shucking an oyster to delivering lunch by boat to a rowing team on the Charles (now that would be tough), they are also appropriately Boston.

HUB-WIDE — In honor of Valentine's Day, Zagat named its annual 9 Cutest Culinary Couples. For romantics and food enthusiasts alike, the list is full of gems, like this adorable anecdote from Jeremy and Lisa Sewall, co-owners of Lineage: "They celebrate their anniversary on March 31, the date of a particularly special dinner. It was during a trip to Jeremy’s family home in York, Maine. Lisa 'knew Jeremy was nervous' because the expert chef cut his finger while cooking."

HUB-WIDE — Few lunches are more satisfying than a giant, dripping sandwich, and this month's Boston Magazine has a beautifully-photographed list of Boston's best. The team points out that without a singular sandwich tradition — like Philly's cheesesteak — Boston's things-between-pieces-of-bread scene is more creative and diversified. Lucky us.

HUB-WIDE — Also to file under "lucky us," Boston Globe Magazine recently rounded up 12 of the area's most perfect pizzas. Do you crave a chewy, charred crust, a la A4 Pizza? Or perhaps your style is cheesy and Sicilian, like the pan pizzas from North End mainstay Galleria Umberto. It's all here for you. Plus, just for fun, the magazine enlisted the help of Foodler to share the top 10 toppings Bostonians order. Surprise: spinach makes the list.