Gail Simmons

Gail extols the virtues of fried chicken skin and shares just how giddy everyone was to work with Ad-Rock.

on Sep 29, 2011 I think some people might wonder why Katzie didn’t go home.
GS: Everything that Katzie made was perfectly edible. Nothing that she made tasted bad, in terms of her individual components. Her French fries were perfectly fine, but they were just French fries. Where Katzie failed is that she made these three sauces so that she could highlight the other ingredients that she was given -- the provolone and the gorgonzola and the hot butter -- and her idea was a good one. But the flavors weren't strong enough. And then as another layer, she added three seasoning powders that we also put on the French fries, but that had nothing to do with the flavors that she was given. So they really muddled the whole dish completely. And because she left it up to the guest to do themselves, you kind of put everything on and all the combinations together didn’t work so there ended up being too many different flavor combinations in one dish. It became sort of a mess with no distinct direction. Even she said it in the episode: sometimes we actually want be told how to eat a dish, so that it tastes as the chef envisions it. But because she didn’t know how she wanted it to taste herself, it just appeared as if she had no clue what she was doing. That said, individually nothing was off. Nothing was bad. Nothing was unappealing or tasted terrible when we ate it. I think she just got this idea in her and didn’t adapt it appropriately. She went too far and she couldn’t back out by that point.

Then there was Megan. Her cake was dry. It didn’t taste enough like whiskey, and she had these caramelized onions that she was given by Katzie that looked and tasted like an afterthought. Nothing on her plate tasted bad either, not at all like the way Rebecca's garlic actually made us stop in our tracks and not want to eat another bite.

And by the way, I have to say Megan’s Brass Monkey sorbet was amazing to eat and a fantastic idea. I didn’t even know what Brass Monkey was before the challenge! I only knew the Beastie Boys song about it. It’s an orange-flavored malt liquor. It was so smart of Megan to make it into a sorbet. It worked really well. It was one of the smartest things we ate all day. It was just that the rest of her dish didn’t come together.