Gavin Jobe will compete in Alton's Challenge, Part 1 in the first episode of a five-part tournament called Chopped: Alton's Challenge.
Jobe is born and raised in Baton Rouge, and never had formal training. He started as a server at Sylvio's, and then worked his way up to owning his own restaurant, the Pelican House, which he opened four years ago.
For the appetizer round, competitors must embrace a "fermentation" theme, then for the entrée round, a string, Japanese specialty will be involved, followed by dessert, where an unusual cake will inspire some unusual choices. Judges for this episode are Alton Brown, Amanda Freitag, and Alex Guarnaschelli.
He said the best part of the experience was getting feedback on his work.
"Whenever you go in front of the judges with your dish, you spend ten to fifteen minutes going back and forth kind of explaining your dish, and they critique it," Jobe said. "And for me you know, some of these chefs are really people I would look up to, so that was just a really neat experience."
The show features timed rounds, but Jobe says the pressure really didn't get to him, because he's used to it during his regular job.
"Cooking, it kind of just felt the same," he said. "In a kitchen you're still always under pressure of a ticket time trying to get food out in a timely manner, so that wasn't too different, but it was really just, it was the whole experience, interacting with the judges, and really cooking I guess against other people, but really you're really just trying to cook against yourself. You got worry about what you're doing instead of what they're doing."
Jobe cannot reveal any details about the show or the results, but if he wins, he will appear on the finale on November 7.
Jobe was one of three finalists in the 2017 Millennial Awards for Culinary Arts and was named in FSR Magazine's 40 Under 40 list.