Tom Colicchio

Top Chef head honcho Tom Colicchio may be considered the "bad guy" when it comes time to axe one of the cheftestants during judge's table, but for now this restaurateur could be called a hero.

The reality-show judge saved fellow foodie Joan Nathan from choking to death during the "Art. Food. Hope." benefit in Washington, D.C. on Monday, according to the Internet Food Association. While being cornered by some bitter Top Chef fans who where less than thrilled about last week's elimination of Ariane, Colicchio heard a cry for help from another famed chef, Alice Waters, and immediately ran over to perform the Heimlich maneuver saving Nathan who had a chunk of chicken lodged in her wind pipe.

"I did what anyone else would have done and was just happy to be there," Colicchio told TVGuide.com. "I'm thrilled Joan's well."

Top Chef airs Wednesdays at 10 pm/ET on Bravo.