Hugh Acheson

Hugh Acheson surveys the pool party scene.

on Aug 22, 2012

This season of Top Chef Masters is being very supportive of the music scene in Georgia. First the B-52s handled a Quickfire and now we have the Indigo Girls. Happenstance? I think not. This has all the markings of Art Smith picking all the talent. 

We are pretty much at the halfway point in the competition with our brigade consisting of Lorena, Takashi, Art, Chris, Patriceo, Kerry, and Thierry.  

The Quickfire is to create a meaty classic with a vegetarian faux iteration as well. The 45 minutes they are given is pretty paltry. Patriceo takes the idea to the stoves and is making pho. She even pronounces it correctly (fuh), confusing America. Also confusing to America is the name of one local pho place in Athens: Just Pho & More.  

At this point in the competition none of them are straying far from their skill set. Takashi is making something Japanese; Chris is making something meaty; Art is making something Southern, messy, but tasty; Kerry is making something fancy-looking; Lorena is making a South American delight. Thierry is doing something French and talking about how much he loves Takashi. All is very consistent in Las Vegas. 

Art’s pot pies look like a trainwreck, but true to form, they taste great. Emily from the Indigo Girls is an investor in Watershed in Atlanta, a restaurant where Southern food has made a sizeable and very important impact. About five years ago the chef there, Scott Peacock, won a James Beard award for his thoughtful and precise food. Scott has moved back to his home state of Alabama and is making movies and writing books, but Watershed is still excelling in the Southern food department, in a new location in Buckhead with a skilled Louisiana native, Joe Truex, at the stoves. Emily knows Southern food.