Top Chef NYC, episode 2

Firstly, Thanksgiving was tremendous. The compound butter absolutely made it. MADE IT. It went off without a hitch of any kind besides running out of wine by the end. Very happy.

And now… for your reading pleasure… especially you procrastinators… we have: TOP CHEF episode Two: I Might Be The Only One Who Cares About This Two-Weeks Old Show…

Opening act: Arrogant or simply foreign? Stefan won episode 1. The ‘mos open the day reminding us that they are a team. Ariane yet again, doubts herself, her skills, and halfassedly admits she deserves to be there competing. Stefan and Fabio remind us that they are foreign and highly skilled.

Off to the kitchen: Padma greets the cheftestants with guest judge Donatella Arpella… someone… restaurateur… something. Anyway, the Quick Fire is to go up against an established hot dog proprietor by making their own hot dogs. Fabio forgets some prepositions and says he has no idea how to make hot dog shrug shrug hand gesture. Winner gets immunity.

Radhika might have to knock it off with the Indian dishes lest she be pigeonholed by her own hand. Sushi dog? Gross. Panini dog? Hmm. Almost everyone made their own meat but for Jill. She is properly chastised. Stefan’s dog sucks. Radhika’s dog hits, so does Fabio’s Mediterranean. Hosea’s bacon dog (of course), the winner is Radhika’s Indian dog.

Elimination Challenge: open a Top Chef restaurant in Manhattan. Create a three-course “New American” lunch menu with each cheftestant responsible for one dish. Everyone immediately jumps in screaming about what dish they want to do. Wisely, Jeff takes control and figures out who wants to do what and separates them into groups accordingly, desserts and entrees.

Hosea picks up canned crab – a collective “eep” goes up across the land. Wacky Jill grabs an ostrich egg to make the world’s hugest quiche. The dessert group starts out yet again with Ariane getting all milquetoast about her ideas and choices…

Chef Tom pops into the kitchen to say, “hey by the by, you’re going to be cooking in my kitchen and ps, they’re all New York chefs that tried out for this show and didn’t make it”. Hellooooo sour grapes firing squad! Nicely played, producers.

Stefan and Fabio are gay for each other. Eugene wants in because he can cook too, man. He then makes a mildly underhanded comment about how long the trip back to Europe is going to be… zang. There’s love in the air… Hosea and some dark haired girl are playing footsies on the couch. AwwwwwGAG. Conversations about nerves, angry New Yorkers, blah blah – this episode is really boring so far.

They enter Craft reverently and quickly. Hosea’s messing with his crab, Fabio is chemically reactioning his olives, curly is unhappy with her crust, Ariane is trusting competitors’ opinions on her dish (fool). The dejected chefs (dejefs?) enter and sit. They talk about what they see on the menu and are poised and ready to fight, clearly.

Chef and his sous chef are expo’ing – Alex..there’s a contestant called Alex? – the dejefs order. Apps first. Jamie’s corn soup goes over well. Hosea’s crab bombs. Leah’s potatoes bombs. Fabio’s carpaccio is fabulous. Melissa’s avocado is boring. Jill’s quiche sucks. Eugene’s meatloaf’s presentation sucks. Stefan’s halibut is thumbs up. Jeff is having problems with the range but his chicken gets props. Alex’s pork loin blows. Radhika’s avocado mousse gets grimaces, Daniel’s ricotta pound cake is good. Ariane’s lemon martini makes Padma spit it out (wow). Richard’s banana bread gets mixed thumbs up. Carla’s rustic apple tart is good says Padma. Tom is eating everyone’s food and they’re all reaching for their Xanax. The diners are generally pissed and pissy about being passed over for “this”. Tom says “disappointing” “shocked” and “clunky”.

Judges Table: I want Ariane to go. Did you get that impression yet…? Tom wants to see Hosea, Ariane, Fabio, Carla, Jill and Jamie. Fabio, Jamie and Carla get the thumbs up. Of them, Fabio takes the cake. LOOOSERS! Ariane, Hosea and Jill. Hosea’s canned crab was just a bad call… he should have gotten fresh crab or changed the dish completely. Ariane can’t defend the lemon martini without a shrug and a puss. Dead eyed, mouth-breather Jill’s quiche was too boring and just didn’t work. Again, a shrug and perhaps the worst defense ever.

Commence firing squad: Jill’s out. Yeah, I can see that… but you knew who I wanted to get the boot. Even Jill said Ariane should have been the one to go because of Padma’s spit take. Agreed. Jill cries. Ariane cries because she’s confused. They all look shell shocked. Ariane cries because she “doesn’t deserve it”. NO SHITE.

Ok maybe it’s my huge gap in watching these shows, but this season kinda sucks.


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