Thursday, September 10, 2009

Reactions to Top Chef Las Vegas Episode 4

Last week we learned about our cheftestants' heartwarming patriotism and ability to band together as a team in the face of mess hall adversity. This week: more teamwork and more respect, but this time, en francais.

This week's episode, helmed by guest judge Daniel Boulud (who could not be more adorable), showcased the chefs' technical skill and knowledge of traditional French preparations. Plus, a double elimination! And Joel Robuchon!

Tensions ran high in the kitchen during the episode, but only because the chefs were all nervous about cooking for a group of some of the world's most esteemed French chefs. Nobody turned out food that was a complete disaster, and Gail confirmed that this season's chefs are better than any other season's. Much love and sauce all around.

Ultimately, Jesse and Hector were sent home (for their tuna tartare amuse bouche and uneven Chateaubriand, respectively), Kevin won the Quickfire for his escargots with bacon jam, and Bryan won the Elimination Challenge and a week staging in Joel Robuchon's kitchen for the gorgeous trout he made with Mike I.

My thoughts:
  • I love Boulud and I loooove escargots, but Jennifer is right: snails are ugly.
  • The face-rubbing and cursing that follows the Quickfire elimination announcement reminds me, immediately, of season 4. Anybody else remember what a trucker mouth Stephanie had?
  • During the Quickfire judging, could Tom and Daniel be more stone-faced? And does Tom always take bites with his pinky out, or was it just for Mike I.'s dish?
  • Not to take anything away from Kevin's winning dish, but even he admitted that "you can put bacon jam on any plate" and it'll be good. At what point does the bacon backlash begin? Did we see it start with Mattin's Elimination Challenge veloute?
  • During the Quickfire cookoff, Jesse finally started sounding comfortable and confident. Which was obviously the producers' kiss of death.
  • Ron - has he lived 15 different lives? Refugee, Montauk chowder champ, classically trained chef who has prepared frog's legs at least 250 different ways? What's next, sung on stage with Motley Crue?
  • Happy birthday to Mattin. Happy pantsless birthday? Or was that my mind playing tricks on me? Also, is it just me or is Mattin kind of a jerk? Neckerchief or no, he very nearly "threw Ashley under the bus" (I refuse to use that phrase unironically).
  • Kevin's Quickfire win not only gave him immunity, it also gave him the opportunity to don a lavender tie and dine with the judges and Famous French Chefs. I wondered, though, if he wasn't bummed to not get to cook for them. Nerve-wracking, sure, but potentially career-making, too?

What did you think? Another episode devoid of reality TV-caliber drama? Or a testament to the power of good food and talented chefs? Please leave a comment with your thoughts...

10 comments:

ellennj said...

I thought it was an excellent episode - the drama came from the tension of who they were cooking for and how difficult it was to pull off the technique. It seems like the front runners are pulling way ahead - the four on top of the elimination challenge and Kevin. I can't make a case for any dark horses at this point.

JordanBaker said...

I wanted to give the entire episode a hug--not just Bouloud, but Robuchon was so adorable.

Kristine said...

Barring any Tre-Dale surprise eliminations, seems like we're already at the "pick em off one by one" point till we get to the obvious finale (Bryan, Michael V., Jennifer and Kevin). And Mattin didn't just throw Ashley under the bus, he out-right lied about the aspargus veloute - all arrogance and cowardice.

theminx said...

I enjoyed the episode, but I don't enjoy that it lasted an extra 15 minutes....

TROLL Y2K said...

Good episode. I prefer it when they have relatively straight-forward challenges and focus on the food.

occupant said...

Funny, no one else noticed 'the object' moving across the shelf in the background when Tom was tasting Ashley's dish during the quick-fire challenge cook-off?

theminx said...

What object?

occupant said...

Make up your own mind on what it is. Watch "The Top Chef - Season 6 Episode 4 Part 2 9/9/2009" on youTube at the 6:10-6:13 timeframe. You're looking at the shelf in the background.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vjQzZUS-L-E&feature=related

theminx said...

Occupant - it's the top of the head of someone walking past that wall of windows.

occupant said...

Mystery Solved - thanks