Stephanie Izard

Season 4's winner talks turkey and how to get more info on her new project!

on Nov 26, 2008

Well I was happy to see the outcome of last week finally. Not that I am happy to see someone go, but I think the judges made the right decision I should know better than to try to guess the outcome by the editing alone.

Thanks again for the comments and feedback! Last week was a big week for my new restaurant in that the name and some other details got leaked on the internet. There will be more information to come as things get a bit further and are a bit more secure but for now if you are interested just search for The Drunken Goat Chicago and you can get a little info on the new place.

Back to the show. I must say I was shocked to see Grant Achatz walk into the Top Chef kitchen. Being Chicago's real top chef, many people thought he would appear last season. Of course with all that Grant has gone through recently I was not expecting him last year. It is so great to see that he has recovered from his battle with cancer and is now reaching new heights at his restaurant and with his beautiful new book. Chicago is lucky to have such great talent and I eagerly await my next meal at Alinea.

The chefs begin by pulling knives with seemingly random numbers (I know I could not guess where they were going with this one). Out comes the Top Chef Cookbook comprising of dishes created by chefs during the first three seasons along with Blais' tasty banana scallops from our dessert challenge. I love the way they snuck in a little merchandise plug ... hoping next week the chefs will all be wearing the fabulous "Culinary Boner" t-shirts. Turns out that each number represents a page in the book with a recipe that the chef is to put their own twist on in an hour... a whole hour? Something fishy is going on for sure.

Of course half way through the challenge, once the chefs are well into their creations, in comes Grant announcing he is actually in the mood for soup. Most of the chefs seem pretty happy with the change. Jamie mentions her love for making soup and Carla mentions the final ingredient in soup being love. I have to agree that making soup is very satisfying. You end up with a well balanced bowl of comfort to slirp up and enjoy, well hopefully. For the most part, the soups that we got to see look quite tasty. Seeing Fabio's made me laugh a bit remembering back to the original dish that Mike created while completely high on pain killers, but Grant found his soup a bit flat. Melissa had a bit of a misstep as well. I thought it was a nice idea to recreate a classic Italian Wedding Soup but it seemed to miss the mark. Richard seemed to know he was a bit off with the balance as he ran out of time to add in some lime juice which would have helped with the acidity.