June 12, 2008
Stephanie wins Top Chef Chicago and becomes the first female Top Chef, but aside from her victory, the rest of the show was BORING! I decided to post this in fancy “Vivaldi” style font because it suits the high brow foodie audience for which the finale was intended. I could not appreciate Stephanie’s daring pecan and olive ingredients that so impressed the judges. The producers keep forgetting that those of us at home can’t taste the food.. I could appreciate, however, that Lisa’s soup caused the renowned guest chefs to “slurp” and ask for seconds. Like I have said before, Lisa did her homework before arriving in Puerto Rico and performed better than she ever did in Chicago. She was uncharacteristically at ease during the finale due to the fact that there wasn’t anyone around to argue with her. If you have ever watched Hell’s Kitchen, you can easily imagine Chef Gordon Ramsey eating Lisa alive (and probably throw up afterwards). Richard’s tanks of exotic gasses didn’t set him apart from the others. As I watched him pour liquid nitrogen into his bacon flavored ice cream, I thought isn’t that the stuff doctor’s use to freeze warts off of people? (ick) I believe Richard’s downfall was that he thought he could pull it all together on the second day, but surprise—no sous chefs! They bring back the old format for the finale: 2 finalists cooking head to head with the help of former cast mates. Otherwise,Top Chef should move over to the FOOD network. I hope to see more of Stephanie! Maybe she will write a cookbook or get her own television show. She is a heck of a lot less annoying that Rachael Ray!
May 15, 2008
Season 2 runner up, Sam Talbot was the guest chef this week on Top Chef Chicago. Sam, a diabetic and son of a police officer, asked the chefs to create sexy salads and healthy and hearty boxed lunches. Dale and Stephanie came out on top and won praise from the judges who said that their dishes were satisfying, great tasting, and healthy. Despite being criticized by Antonia for only being able to cook Asian food, Dale won this week’s challenge with his marinated bison in cabbage cups. As a reward, he received a Rutherford Hill 2002 bottle of Merlot and two tickets to visit the Rutherford Hill’s winery in Napa Valley, CA.
Spike, Andrew, and Lisa ended up as the bottom 3 for their failure to deliver a healthy boxed lunch for the Chicago Police. These three also delivered the most vocal barbs to fellow chefs. Spike, who won the Sexy Salad Quickfire, had an advantage of selecting 4 items at the market that the other chefs couldn’t use. Strategically, he chose tomatoes, bread, lettuce, and chicken, in turn making everyone else invent a boxed lunch out-of-the-box so to speak. Lisa announced at the onset that everyone’s “personality sucks-a**” and later claimed that one of the chefs burned her rice. The judges, however, were put off by her raw shrimp more than the burnt rice. Andrew said he “woke up today with a f***ing fire inside my stomach, you know, like I’m going to stab somebody, or I’m going to make some amazing food.” Fortunately, he didn’t stab anyone, and unfortunately (for Andrew), the judges hated his dish and the police thought the meal was not satisfying. Andrew was furious that Lisa “threw him under the bus” by telling the judges that he didn’t use a whole grain. Andrew then admitted to the judges that he had lost his rule sheet, but in the end, he was sent home because the judges hated his dish.
Will Dale keep the Merlot for himself and retain his a**hole status with the other chefs?
Coming up is the next instalment of the popular Restaurant Wars.