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Bravotv.com: What do you think the key to making a successful dessert for the Quickfire was? Do certain flavors lend themselves better to gum production?
Johnny Iuzzini: This was all about explosive flavor in a small package. This means not too many flavors and you need to taste everything. It also should be something that people can relate to and would want to chew. You want flavors that provoke happy emotions. You also need to think about the flavors/taste, and in the end how they would affect your breath. I would think that brighter flavors and acidic flavors work best.
Bravotv.com: Craig finally won something! Were you intrigued by his pancakes?
JI: Hooray for THE CRAIG, as we called him. He is constantly on the bottom and feeling like he is under-experienced compared to his fellow competitors. He really needed this to raise his spirits and to start feeling like he belonged in this competition. He won 25K! Damn boy. Hysterical that instead of paying off school loans that he would rather just go shopping. His dessert flavors actually sounded really good. Simple and identifiable. Something almost everyone can relate to. Totally not the way I would have gone, but again, I am always surprised, and I am always learning from the creative minds of our chefs.
Bravotv.com: On to the Elimination, the chefs were told many things about Lisa Vanderpump’s “likes.” What things would you have taken away from the conversation with her husband?
JI: Ken gave some pretty detailed items Lisa likes, as well as some pretty specific keywords when speaking of what she likes and her style. He said she loves the color pink. Also that she is very meticulous and loves fresh flowers. The idea was to turn her restaurant Villa Blanca into Villa Rosa for one night only. He spoke of the love of her life being her dog, Giggy. Things can be glitzy but In good taste, pink roses, and crumble. This is pretty specific in one way yet leaves it wide open for creativity. I would say you can be playful but on a sophisticated level. This is a pitch for a party for worldly distinguished women, not for children. I would keep it clutter-free and sharp. I would think about the ease of eating it -- no one wants to fight with their food, or in a woman's case, take a chance on messing up their makeup. The two most important words Ken said were meticulous and tasteful. I would focus on that and make sure I had a delicious crumble to boot.
Bravotv.com: What are things to keep in mind when creating a dessert “pitch”?
JI: You should always ask a lot of questions. Get as much detail of the customer's vision as possible. Remember, its not about creating a showcase based on your likes and preferences -- it's about the customer. They are paying -- therefore, it is up to you to give them what they want. Your creativity, skill, techniques, and experience come into play in the execution and design of those elements and how they come together in a unique and beautiful way. Give the customer what they ask for and more!
When i make a dessert i pefer .....easy,simple and tasty. Seems to get raves everytime. I like Craig. Glad he won the 25 g's. Go Craig.
From the faces of the BH wives, Craig's lemonade was awful. He has been so immature to the point of ridiculous so far. I hope he steps it up or gets the boot.
Both challenges were interesting and unique. I must say that the guest judge (Hugh) was beyond obnoxious in his comments and demeanor. He was demeaning! btw: why was asked to judge? During his time on Top Chef Masters, his food was mostly terrible and his attitude was worse.
I think "The Craig" should have gone home in the first elimination. He is no match for the others and has just been lucky. Hope this isn't another "Robyn" from Top Chef.
The first problem was having Hugh as the guest judge. Ugh. Then he picks a pancake dessert as a gum. That sounds horrible. I am sad Nelson went, as it should have been Craig from week 1.....
I, too, like Craig. It is Orlando who needs to pack his tools and go, I get the feeling that anything he serves would leave a sour taste in one's mouth just from his attitude. His showpiece may have been nice, but that was lost when he covered it with flowers and he didn't create any desserts! Did it really take him 6 hours plus 2 the next day to make that? Yet, he wasn't called on that!
The showpiece from Amanda's team didn't look to be made from edible ingredients, how is bending bamboo a dessert showpiece, exactly?
Subjectivity was such a necessary evil when it came to judging the gum challenge...Pancake gum sounds HORRID, but I wasn't judging. Craig (ie: THE CRAIG, heh) is a cartoon character with all the trimmings, and I don't necessarily mean that in a nice way...
I hate to say it but at the end, this is tv, and it is always compelling to have a person who is polarizing and that person usually needs a foil -- who better than Orlando and Craig. I feel bad for Nelson because i think he was talented and i would have liked to have seen more of what he does. To tell the truth, after his whole monologue, i thought Craig was going to take his 25K and step up and ASK to be cut to save a more deserving team member....oh well....wishful thinking!
Making a dessert and wondering if it is going to mess up a women's lipstick is silly and ridiculous.The dessert should be delicious, creative and have an appetizing appearance and not be judged on whether a women's lipstick is going to be ruined.
It is admirable that Craig took a chance and got himself on TCJD, but how has he gotten this far???? And while Orlando is very in love with himself, his showpiece shouldn't have taken that long (we made more complicated things in my sugar class at culinary school in less time), he ruined it by adding too much, didn't make a dessert himself, and is in general, rude. I will say however, his comment at the end was great "so stop with your sad stories", especially after carlos said he'd use the money for his kids college, and Craig is over there saying he's going to blow it, then freaking out about what Johnny said. Again, how has he gotten this far?
I really can't see how Craig is still there. He really does not have some of the imagination as the others do. He was not a good leader for his team and I think he knows that his time on being on TCJD is coming to an end soon. Look at some of the other chefs work and then look at his and there is no comparison. Sorry, Craig. I like you and everything but I don't like to lie and I'm sure I'm not the only one that feels that way. We'll see what happens, I wish you luck in your remaining time on the show. Johnny, I love the show, continued success, I love you, Gail and Chef Keller. Thank you.
I think Johnny Luzzini is the hottest dessert on this show.. I love your makeover, Not saying you weren't great before but wow... anyway thank you Bravo for the new eye candy on our wonderful dessert show!!!!! I liked the show before but now... I think I'm Starting to get into it a little more...lol