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The Daily Dish Top Chef Masters

Top Chef Masters Winner Floyd Cardoz Passes Away After Testing Positive for Coronavirus

The Top Chef Masters Season 3 winner was a trailblazer of New Indian cuisine.

By Laura Rosenfeld
Floyd Cardoz Coronavirus Passes Away

Top Chef Masters Season 3 winner Floyd Cardoz has passed away after testing positive for coronavirus (COVID-19). He was 59.

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Cardoz died from complications from coronavirus at Mountainside Medical Centre in New Jersey on Wednesday, March 25, PEOPLE confirmed with the late chef's Hunger Inc. hospitality group. His family also previously confirmed the news to the Indian publication, which reported that Cardoz had been in Mumbai, where he owned the restaurants The Bombay Canteen and O Pedro, as well as the newly-opened Bombay Sweet Shop.

"Bravo and the Top Chef family are deeply saddened by the passing of Chef Floyd Cardoz. Floyd was a talented chef who competed and won Top Chef Masters. He was thoughtful, kind and his smile illuminated a room," a Bravo spokesperson said in a statement. "He was an inspiration to chefs around the world and we offer our deepest sympathy to his family and friends."

Hunger Inc., previously confirmed on Instagram that Cardoz had been admitted to the hospital with a viral fever on March 17. Cardoz had arrived in New York on March 8 via the Frankfurt Airport, the company's statement said. 

Cardoz also said that he had admitted himself into the hospital "as a precautionary measure" after "feeling feverish" in a post on his personal Instagram account on March 17.

Cardoz began his career in his native Bombay, India (now known as Mumbai), where he attended culinary school and interned in the kitchen of the Taj Mahal Intercontinental Hotel. He then moved to Switzerland to study at the hotel management and culinary school Les Roches. 

His career later took him to New York City where he worked under Chef Gray Kunz of Lespinasse and rose through the ranks from chef de partie to executive sous chef at the restaurant. It was also in New York where Cardoz revolutionized New Indian cuisine as the executive chef of the groundbreaking restaurant Tabla.

Cardoz would go on to serve as the executive chef of North End Grill from Danny Meyer's Union Square Hospitality, and open Paowalla, which was later renamed Bombay Bread Bar, in New York City. Upon announcing in 2019 that the Bombay Bread Bar would be closing that year, Cardoz also shared that he had begun a new chapter as the VP of Culinary with the Estiatorio Milos Group.

Cardoz was crowned the winner of Top Chef Masters Season 3, which aired in 2011.

For the latest, most accurate information on coronavirus, go to the World Health Organization (WHO) website.

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