Thursday, November 16, 2006

Top Chef Recap: Leftovers: The Other White Meat!

Carlos: "Food and Wine Magazine is my bible. No, really; it changed my life. And remember, with the holidays coming up: it's the reason for the season. I have some literature I can leave with you."

This inspirational, life-affirming message has been brought to you by Food and Wine Magazine.

For the quickfire the chefs have to make something edible out of the parts of animals not good enough to be used for dog food. There's a good reason it's called offal.

Michelle Bernstein is the guest judge. She pronounces almost everything "very nice." For a few of the dishes she really gets descriptive and calls them "lovely."

Elia's dish is one of the few that is neither very nice nor lovely. It is apparently too much of a tribute to its ingredients.

Elia: "Well what the hell did the bitch expect kidney to taste like? Olives? Jeez!"

Sam wins.

The elimination challenge is to make dinner for Jennifer Coolidge. WTF? Who the hell comes up with these challenges? Don't get me wrong; I absolutely adore Jennifer Coolidge. In fact, I know her from good movies where she isn't having sex with teenagers. I just don't understand why the chefs are making dinner for her and 60 of her closest friends.

The chefs have to pair up. They are only able to pair up because last episode no one was sent home. What a coincidence, right? So if they weren't planning to send anyone home last week, was the whole cookie scandal a ruse?

Betty pairs up with her best friend/arch enemy Mia but she doesn't know about the arch enemy part. Marisa would like to tell her. Wow, Marisa has that look on her face again. She always looks like she's smelling something really bad. Marcel is paired up with Frank:

Marcel: "This is worse than that time I had to go to the prom with a girl."

Josie takes Marisa as a partner. Talk about a bad prom date:

Josie: "Marisa is the only one I really trust to screw this up and get me kicked off the show.

OK, who spent 99 cents voting for Marcel as most annoying? Seriously? Shouldn't Bravo be paying us?

So, we are at the luncheon party at Social in Hollywood. Padma is wearing a long, red dress and does not look like a total whore for a change. Jennifer Coolidge arrives looking fantastic but she's not using a funny voice. Oh well.

Mike: "One of my dreams in life is to have sex with Stiffler's mom."

The chefs create a completely disorganized meal. Josie and Marisa create a palate cleanser of Pepto Bismol and pineapple for the fifth course. Apparently this is the most bizarre thing anyone else has ever seen:

Cliff: "Usually the fifth course is a protein to distinguish it from the previous four dishes, which were also proteins."

Gail: "This is like an intermezzo. I am so confused. I don't know where I am."

Mike and Ilan's dish wins. Now, I don't like team challenges to begin with, but almost worse than having to pick one person from a team to go home is picking one person from a team to win the prize. If one team member makes an important decision then the other team member should get equal credit for recognizing that it is a good decision and going with it. Anyway, Ilan wins.

The teams with the worst dishes are sent in. Michelle Bernstein first points out what amazingly fresh ingredients the chefs had to work with and then complains that the pomegranate juice tasted like it had been left out for 48 hours. So why does she have bad pomegranate juice in her refrigerator? Uh, ever have one of those days when you're feeling not so fresh? Yeah, that's what I thought.

Mia and Betty: "We both thought the puff pastry was a bad idea, which is why we used it."

Mia: "After we finished our dish I went into the walk-in and cried."

Gail: "I don't blame you. It made me cry to have to eat it."

I now have a few words to say about Tom. There has been discussion (specifically on Blogging Top Chef) about having a mentor in the kitchen who would serve a similar function to Tim Gunn. Apparently Tom has responded to such suggestions by saying that cooking is completely different from designing clothes and that once you start making a dish there is nothing you can do to change it in any way. So I bring your attention to his comments at the judges' table:

Tom: "When you realized you were serving Pepto Bismol you should have done something to fix it. When you realized the puff pastries weren't working with the dish you should have left them out. When you noticed the pomegranate juice tasted bad you should have fixed the problem. You all should have fixed the problems!"

So what you are saying is that it is possible to make adjustments in order to address an element that isn't working? Maybe the sort of thing Tim Gunn would point out in the design room? Hmmm? Interesting.

Josie and Marisa stick together and are both eliminated.

Josie: "So you're going to send someone home as talented as me? It's crazy to send someone this talented home just for making one mistake. I know how talented I am."

I'm not sure but I think Josie thinks she's talented. Did you get the same impression?


Anonymous said...

Hilarious and serious at the same time. So true, Eric. If only one chef won, shouldn't only one chef have been auf'd?

But someone had to pay for last week's fiasco. Therefore two chefs had to leave. Unfair to Josie, who is a legend in her own mind. But she is right: She had not been a bottom dweller before.

Wow, Marisa has that look on her face again. She always looks like she's smelling something really bad.

For that reason (and for failing to impress us in any way) Marisa should have been the only one to pack her knives.

Blogging Top Chef said...

Reading your post is always the highlight of my week. I agree with Ms.Place not only is it hilarious, you make the points that we are all thinking.

Thanks for the support of our blog as well and keep these great treats coming.

Sous Chef Humor

Anonymous said...

People with ADD are so tasteless, so sophomoric. So flighty and fickle too ( how about work(d)play f + tickle). So spontaneous. Always seeking stimulation. Such a sick puppy lover.

ADDs have gay-dars and don’t even know it. I swear. But in a nice way.

It has been one de-olive oiled f@##% fun ride.

Anonymous said...

Did I mention that you are blazing shining stars. I come here to visualize this magical piece of heaven on earth. I see Konigsee, Olympian training ground, the opening scene of the Sound of Music, panoramic vistas and rich architecture. Bravo.

Eric said...

I think - similarly to what they say of doctors - that Josie has a God complex.

the Big Shamu said...

You know what I want to see? A big team elimination. And they know ahead of time that a whole team would be auffed. Can you imagine how much Pepto Cliff would have to chug? You'd have chefs whimpering in the corner, crying for their mommies or their lawyers. That's the kind of drama I want to see.

eric3000 said...

OMG, they should totally go six weeks in a row without kicking anyone off and then send six people home at once! That would be so cool!

the Big Shamu said...

It would make me all tingly. Think about it. The anger, the stress, and hopefully some seriously good food. Instead of it being easy for the judges to kick someone off, making a decision would be so hard. Talk about fun exit interviews. Hehe.

Charlus said...


We'll add our mellifluous contralto to the chorus, and say that your posts are always a Cracker Jack box full of chortles. (We covet your pith.) Keep them coming. And e-mail us; we have a question for you.