Top Chef Recap: The Bride & The UnGroomed
While some of last night’s flavors lacked boldness, the Top Chef crew is finally showing some flair.
Stefan is clearly emerging as the class bully, whose only soft spot seems to be for … girls who like girls! Eugene, initially inspirational with his rags-to-riches story, revealed a tasteless potty mouth. Fabio, the Italian Stallion, couldn't work his charm on a bridal party. And Carla, the tree-hugging loyalist, eternally loopy and cool, needs to grow some… .
The Quickfire challenge is an oldie but goodie: the palette test. The chefs had to sample three sauces and name as many ingredients as possible. They taste tested shrimp and lobster bouillabaisse, Thai green curry, and Mexican mole sauce. The chefs faced off, spitting out obvious ingredients like salt to absurdities like peanut butter. Hosea won the palete party against the ever-confident Stefan, guessing seven ingredients, including the elusive Thai basil and Thai chili. Hats off to Hosea, the nicest and most likable of the bald boys.
The chefs' next challenge: to cater Gail Simmons’s bridal shower. They’re divided into teams: Borrowed, Blue, Old and New. It was a daunting task - Gail being the judge who doesn’t budge, along with 50 of her notoriously nit-picky foodie friends, including the editor-in-chief of Food & Wine.
Team Borrowed cleverly decided to “borrow” Rhatika’s Indian culture. Their menu features lamb with carrot puree, prepared by underdog-turned-rock star Ariane. Their subtle Indian spices and beautiful lamb, blows everyone away. Gail exudes happiness at every bite.
Team Blue went with an oceanic theme, because as Tom pointed out, “There are NO blue foods.” Fabio played it safe with a Chilean sea bass (not a favorite of the socially conscious), which elicited the comment from one guest that it was like eating "old food."
Team New was one big no-no. They conceptualized a new-age sushi, without fish or rolls, instead throwing surf and turf into the mix. The choice--and execution--baffled the guests and left them with a distaste for limp shrimp tempura and overcooked rice in their mouths.
Something Old executed some tasty traditional dishes- like an heirloom tomato sorbet and a classical French terrine. The elegance, however, ended in the kitchen. Stefan’s self-righteousness soured the entire experience for Jeff and Hosea, whose techniques proved to be better than Mister Big Shot himself.
Over at Judges Table, the babes from Team Borrowed are applauded, and Ariane wins with an adorable, “Who, me??!!” Jamie is bitter because she almost had it.
Team New is on the chopping block because of Eugene’s icky rice and Danny’s incredulous idea of good food. Til the bitter end, Danny refuses to admit the team's error in judgement and execution and he gets the boot over Eugene. --Alyssa Shelasky
Tell us: Do you think it was fair that Ariane won Jamie? Courtesy Bravo TV