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Top Chef personality Howard ‘Howie’ Kleinberg has died at age of 46 following a heart attack

Top chef personality Howard ‘Howie’ Kleinberg has died aged 46 after suffering a heart attack

  • The Florida-born chef had appeared in season three of the Bravo series
  • His mother Susan said, ‘He was married to his passion in life, that was his cooking’
  • Kleinberg had his own eatery in Miami called Bulldog Barbecue for 10 years
  • Kleinberg had supported charities aimed at eliminating child hunger, as well as animal shelters

Howard ‘Howie’ Kleinberg of the Bravo series Top Chef has died of a heart attack at age 46.

Kleinberg’s mother Susan told the Miami Herald that the chef, who had been on the show’s third season, passed away last weekend after the medical event.

“He was married to his passion in life, which is his cooking,” she said. “I just found out how many lives he’s touched.”

The latest: Howard 'Howie' Kleinberg of the Bravo series Top Chef has died of a heart attack at age 46

The latest: Howard ‘Howie’ Kleinberg of the Bravo series Top Chef has died of a heart attack at age 46

Bravo released a statement saying: “The Top Chef family is saddened to learn of the unexpected passing of Howard Kleinberg from Season Three. Howie’s passion for cooking has fulfilled many and our deepest condolences go out to his family and friends.”

The Florida-born chef had learned his trade at Johnson & Wales University in North Miami, the newspaper reported, and had worked at the Hotel Intercontinental in Miami.

Kleinberg, a regular at the South Beach Wine & Food Festival, had run his own Miami eatery called Bulldog Barbecue, according to the paper.

According to the Miami New Times, Kleinberg ran the restaurant for 10 years before taking a position at the Anderson as head chef. Last March, Kleinberg had started working at the Coconut Grove, Florida restaurant, the Peacock Garden Resto Bar + Grill, as a chef.

The veteran chef was pictured at the South Beach Wine & Food Festival in February 2014

The veteran chef was pictured at the South Beach Wine & Food Festival in February 2014

Kleinberg had been involved in charitable efforts, being a supporter of organizations aimed at eliminating child hunger and animal shelters.  He was pictured in 2010 in Miami

Kleinberg had been involved in charitable efforts, being a supporter of organizations aimed at eliminating child hunger and animal shelters. He was pictured in 2010 in Miami

The restaurant’s owners told the New Times: “We at Peacock Garden are saddened by the passing of Chef Howie Kleinberg. Howie was a valued member of our team and we extend our deepest condolences to his family.”

Anderson owner Ken Lyon said he worked with Kleinberg for a year after hiring him in October 2020 to relaunch the restaurant after the pandemic shutdown.

“We’ve been working together for a year and I’m so glad I had that time with him,” Lyon said, calling Kleinberg “a true barbecue champion” and “one of the most talented people in the barbecue industry.”

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Kleinberg was remembered in a number of tweets following the news of his passing

Kleinberg was remembered in a number of tweets following the news of his passing

“I was amazed at his knowledge. It was refreshing that he really knew those classic old-fashioned recipes, the basics that many young chefs don’t know how to prepare these days. He had a real talent.’

Kleinberg had been involved in charitable efforts, being a supporter of organizations aimed at eliminating child hunger, as well as animal shelters.

Kleinberg’s family requested donations in memory of the organizations Feeding South Florida or Bullies-N-Beyond Rescue.

Kleinberg is survived by mother Susan Kleinberg Ratner and stepfather Ken Ratner; his sister Amy Wildstein and her three children.

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