I thought as a whole, the entire group did a great job in 15 minutes. The Quickfires with a really short time limit are always crazy, and I remember how much pressure there is to get it finished before the clock runs out. So there is a top five, and a bottom five. I wrote about Elia's attitude in my last blog. Here she is again, blabbering about how she shouldn't be in the bottom five, criticizing Tom of all people. It comes across as purely contemptuous, and somewhat hilarious as the words "Assistant Room Chef" splash on the screen under her name during interview. The whole chocolate facial thing makes me think something's not right.
In regards to Frank's death threats, yes, Marcel may be annoying. Yes, he may be a little bit smug. But he is young, and it absolutely irks me to see two grown adults like Frank and Betty beat up on him. Had I been Marcel and had to cook in the room with Frank's underwear and toiletries everywhere, I probably would've put his shit on the floor too. And talk about Sam being an instigator. I was thrilled to find out that first day that Anthony Bourdain would be the guest judge.
I had met Chef Bourdain previously at The FCI, actually at one point selling his books while he sat next to me signing them. I'll make it known now that he is one of my heroes. I had read Kitchen Confidential when it first came out. At the time, I was a line cook at Aquavit, and so much of the book made me laugh out loud. I've eaten at Les Halles several times. Not exactly the best dining experience I've ever had, but I still wouldn't kick it out of bed.
The reason why I admire him is because of his persona. I am trying to pursue a career in food media, and I'll tell you right now I outright envy him. I love that he is so opinionated and doesn't give a rat's ass about censorship or being politically correct, especially when it comes to other chefs. And the places he visits, and the dining experiences he has, from four-star cuisine to street grub ... f****** amaaaazing. He brings humor, experience, and tongue-in-cheek commentary to all of his writings and to food TV, things that are generally missing in the rest of the shuffle. So when I get my own show, he will be a source of inspiration for me. None of this cookie cutter BS that makes up most of the food TV world.
The elimination challenge was my first opportunity to watch some of the cast in action. I was told that the challenge was to make a "cutting edge" Thanksgiving meal. Good God, they all failed miserably. At the dinner table, you can hear Frank's personal feelings get in the way of making any fair judgments about Marcel's dish. Marcel was the only one who actually stepped up to the challenge in presenting something innovative. Again, Carlos, Elia, Betty, Marcel, and Midgely opted to operate as individuals for this challenge, rather than come up with a comprehensive, cohesive menu.