Thursday, June 11, 2009

Recap Roundup: Top Chef Masters Episode 1 (UPDATED!)

The first episode is over and we’ve all had a chance to let the results (and the new format) sink in. Now is the time that all cheftestants dread…time for what the bloggers think.

Good news for the chefs that care: so far, most of the bloggers think the show is pretty good. Maybe a little less spicy than a regular season, but general consensus is that at least it’s nice to see the food. This episode, in particular, there’s some missing of the Padma, a lot of Hubert Keller love, and a little, “Come on, Hubert. And Michael. You’re not too good for a microwave.”

In their words:

Cliffieland on GE's continued excellence: "Halfway in, Christopher learns the lesson that so many others have learned: GE Monogram™ appliances are NOT to be trusted. Naturally, his oven doesn’t work, his mixer is hosed and the freezer isn’t freezing.Good work, GE! That sponsorship deal is golden!"

KicksInfo on the (lack of) drama: “It looks like we shouldn’t expect a clash of personalities in this series — the chefs all seem to genuinely like and respect each other. I’m happy for them… but slightly disappointed for us.”

Procrastiblog on what no drama means for the bloggers: "As much as I like to act all contemptuous of the Hoseas, the Leahs, the Arrianes, and so on, and pretend they have no place on Top Chef, I’m in the snark business over here. Writing a snarky blog post about Top Chef Masters is going to be like preparing an amuse bouche with ingredients from a vending machine. I don’t want to turn out the blog equivalent of a Snickers bar with a Cheeto sticking out of it."

Philly City Paper’s Meal Ticket on host Kelly Choi: “I think they posted a Craigslist like ‘Seeking Hot Ethnic Woman Who Claims to Be a ‘Foodie’ But is Clearly Too Skinny For That Shit’”

Jordan Baker on TCM vs. TC the original: "So there's no Padma and no Tom Colicchio? The resemblance between this show and actual Top Chef gets slimmer and slimmer every moment. The hostess seems relatively sober, and they've replaced Tom with an old lady in jaunty hats."

Chew on That on Hubert Keller: “I’ll be honest: the only chef of these 4 that I had even heard of was Hubert Keller. Whether it’s because he was a guest judge in past seasons of Top Chef or he’s just more famous than the others, I’m not sure, but what I do know is that Hubert Keller seemed like the clear winner from the start!”

Top Chef Masters Review on everybody's feelings about pastry: "Michael Schlow echoed the sentiment of previous cooks when he stated that desserts were the bane of his existence."

Televicious on Tim Love’s chicken fried strawberries: “Why do the chicken-fried strawberries sound delish? Well, the girl scouts agree with me.”

Thursday Night Smackdown on the Girl Scouts: “I think you could make an entire television series out of famous chefs being criticized by Girl Scouts. I would be all over that like Ilan Hall on derivative Spanish food.”

Limecrete on the shower scene: “Hubert works some ingenious and somewhat disgusting magic with pasta and the communal showers, impressing all the judges.”

Sweet Tea and Sunshine on the “critics” (not judges): “They talk, they debate, they sort-of-don’t-like some things and mostly like others. But generally they are fairly mellow and respectful…”

David Dust on his not-so-secret crush, Christopher Lee: "James Oseland, while discussing Christopher’s Pork Chops, states 'The meat … ah, the Angels sang!'. Hey, BACK IT UP AND AWAY FROM MY MAN, Beeyotch. If you so much as mention his delicious pork again, I will cut you."

B-Side Blog on the critics: "The new judges were articulate and informed — even if I didn't quite trust Red Sweater's knowledge of tailgating food."

Give Me My Remote on the Kind-of-Glad stew room: “And oh man, how much did you guys love the nice table with wine and a table cloth that the chefs got to sit at? This is, of course, opposed to beer and lawn chairs in the store room. I think that’s awesome—keep everyone in their place!”

Foodie in Disguise on the sweet factor: "I really enjoyed this version of Top Chef. It was nice to see well-seasoned (haha) chefs battle it out against each other. There is a certain camaraderie that exists amongst them that also is very endearing to me."

My Monkey Could Do That on what’s coming up: “This season: a lot of cooking and a decided lack of drama. Neil Patrick Harris!! LOVE!”

Any other recappers out there? Send us a link and we’ll add you to the roundup.

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