Hi, everybody! Hope you’ve had an extremely tasty week, and were as filled with childlike wonder and excitement as I was by this nostalgic, mesmerizing episode.
It would be nearly impossible to find many grown-up Americans of a certain age who weren’t totally obsessed with Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory when they were little. To imagine being invited to a world where everything is not just beautiful, but edible, even now makes for some pretty good daydreaming, especially if your day-to-day life is dessert.
For pastry chefs to have complete creative freedom to recreate that magic world for some of the people who were closer than any of us to seeing it as reality was a challenge they might have awaited since childhood. A dream come true, as Katzie said. I got goose bumps when Sally said the movie had influenced and inspired her not just as a pastry chef, but also in terms of how she thought about what was possible. The potential is unlimited!
Maybe I’m just a goody two shoes, but another big thing from the movie that always stuck with me was the moralizing in the Oompa Loompas’ songs. After each kid’s downfall, the industrious, playful and very, very wise little guys would remind us, in rhyme, that chewing gum is gross, eating too much makes you fat, and watching too much TV is for morons. I know they’d have pulled life lessons from this challenge… here are what some of them might have been. (Sorry they don’t rhyme!)
It’s never just a day at the movies. Of course everyone was so relieved and happy when the GailMail invited them out of the kitchen--finally! But you have to give it to Matthew for assuming a Quickfire or some trick was around the corner and choosing his movie theater snacks based on what he could whip up out of them. That was really cute and smart.
There is such a thing as magic. When Adult Violet says seeing the edible landscape in the Just Desserts dining room for the first time was even better than what we can imagine the original was like, I almost cried. The chefs did it! They created a real world of pure imagination, filled with real treats to gobble up, to rival anything from the movie. They used 300 pounds of chocolate! Carlos’ wallpaper was even better than the movie version. I bet he’ll be flooded with calls from people (even beyond all the Violet Beauregarde types out there!) wanting their own. Amanda’s raspberry fizzies actually fizzed! Watching the kid guests’ faces as they walked in and completely freaked out at what they saw was magic itself. And Ron Ben-Israel is the perfect guest judge for Wonka, as it’s as if he grew up on the set of the movie. He is so fanciful, so wild, and lavish… he knows a thing or two about creating edible worlds.
It seemed like the judges had it in for Craig so no matter what he did they were going to say "All he did was X, he's clearly out of his league," Gail Gummi Bear remark proves that. I bet if Craig and Carlos had swapped placards they would have thought the wallpaper was uninspired if they thought it was Craig's. Tell me Carlos did anything hard. Let me channel the judges if they thought Craig had made the wallpaper "All he did was put fruit rollups on some parchment. He's clearly not doing as much as the others." What advanced technique did Carlos show? He did something that was in the movie just like Craig. His level of difficulty was much lower (you try making a giant Gummi Bear that has perfect texture and flavor). What did Carlos do for ten hours beside pour some fruit puree on parchment?
CraigFan, you ask what did Carlos do? He made a macaron that Hubert Keller said was the best thing he'd ever tasted.
Craig made a bad-tasting, badly-jelled gummy bear, and he apparently sucked up a lot of Sally's time as well as his own while doing it. I'm looking forward to seeing what Sally can do if she doesn't have to spend all of her time taking care of someone who should never have been in the competition to begin with.
I thought Hubert Keller was a bit of a wet blanket when it came to Craig. Craig knew he was probably going home so why not have fun with it?
I hope this makes it to someones 'ear' , each time a chief has a legitimate reason , for instance, one of the men, (I do not like so much, which tells you something ) waited to put his ice cream on his treat from the SPLASH episode, was met with complaints of waiting. Well? How many times have I heard, if it will melt wait!!! and I watched, he did not walk away as judges were critiquing but he did fly after that to his dessert... and the complaints started. I have been to these places as a child and an adult And if TOP DESSERT thinks it will solve the 'WAITING IN LINE FOR RIDES AND FOOD, GO FOR IT!@!! MY guess is it will not happen, and another guess at the price these desserts would cost you might want to not bother setting up. LOL I think Johnny has PMS with Gail each month! LOL