Fatima Ali

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Fatima Ali
Born(1989-05-18)May 18, 1989
DiedJanuary 25, 2019(2019-01-25) (aged 29)
Known forChef Executive at Stella 24 Tratoria and La Fonda Del Sol
Winner of episode of TV series Chopped
Top Chef (season 14) (TV cooking show)

Fatima Ali (May 18, 1989 – January 25, 2019) was a Pakistani-American executive chef, restauranteur and television personality.

Early life[edit]

Ali was born and raised in Pakistan, dividing her time between Karachi and Lahore.[1][2] She was the daughter of lawyer and attorney-general Ashtar Ausaf Ali.[1] She learned to cook from her father, her grandmother, and her family's cook, Qadir.[2][3] She immigrated to America at age 18 to attend the Culinary Institute of America, graduating in 2011.[1][2][4]


Ali began her culinary career as a junior sous chef at Café Centro in New York City.[1][4] In 2012, she won an episode of Chopped (Season 12, episode 2, "A Guts Reaction") on the Food Network.[2] She continued her career in New York City, becoming the youngest executive sous chef at Stella 34 Trattoria at Macy's Herald Square, and then the executive sous chef at La Fonda del Sol.[4]

In 2017, Ali was a contestant on Top Chef: Colorado.[4] Although she finished in seventh place, she was voted the fan favorite.[4]

Illness and death[edit]

After competing on the show, Ali was diagnosed with Ewing's sarcoma, and she underwent surgery at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in January 2018.[4] After undergoing chemotherapy she was declared cancer-free, and in April 2018 she cooked in public at the Pebble Beach Food and Wine Festival.[5]

In October 2018, Ali's cancer returned, and she reported that it was terminal.[6] She died at her family's home in San Marino, California on January 25, 2019, at the age of 29.[1][7]


  1. ^ a b c d e Mays, Jeffery C. (January 26, 2019). "Fatima Ali, Fan Favorite on 'Top Chef,' Dies at 29". The New York Times.
  2. ^ a b c d Faruqi, Sara (June 18, 2012). "Pakistani chef spices up American cooking show". Dawn.
  3. ^ Ali, Fatima (January 25, 2019). "Chef Fatima Ali Has Died of Cancer at Age 29; This Is Her Essay from Our Upcoming Issue". Bon Appétit.
  4. ^ a b c d e f Rosenfeld, Laura (January 25, 2019). "Bravo's Top Chef Alum Fatima Ali Has Passed Away After Her Battle with Cancer". Bravo TV.
  5. ^ Erica Chayes Wida (April 9, 2018). "After battling cancer, 'Top Chef' star Fatima Ali returns to the kitchen". Today.
  6. ^ Ali, Fatima (October 9, 2018). "I'm a Chef With Terminal Cancer. This Is What I'm Doing with the Time I Have Left". Bon Appétit.
  7. ^ Goldstein, Joelle (January 26, 2019). "Fatima Ali's Family Speaks Out After the Top Chef Contestant Dies from Rare Form of Bone Cancer". People Magazine.

External links[edit]