Team Top Chef

Bravotv.com's Editor talks about this week's challenge and her meal at Ash's restaurant.

Oct 14, 20090

Welcome back for another week my little, um, pigs and pinots? Sorry -- maybe that was offensive. Before I begin, want to address a couple of comments/questions from my blog last week: Roberto, I'm sure you're not the only one who thought it was odd I didn't quite know what umami meant. It's embarrassing, but I'm not too proud to admit my shortcomings, and, well, if it educates some readers in the process, all the better! The list of things about food I should know that I probably don't is pretty long, which is a good reason I have no effect on the outcome of the show! PeachPie, I read ALL the comments on my blog, both good and bad, even the late-comers. And Mary, thank you for your feedback about our semi-new design. We're always trying to improve user experience, and your comments are welcome and helpful. Trust that we listen and are continuing to make navigating between content as easy on you guys as possible.

OK, onto the episode: We start with a riveting look at Robin's pilates regime. I swear, before this episode I don't think I realized how jacked Robin is! All I have to say to the chefs starting with her is, "Watch out!" She could probably beat you up!

The chefs arrive in the kitchen to see Padma standing with Charlie Palmer, American icon and former boss to both Bryan and Michael Voltaggio. I found it really interesting to hear both Bryan and Michael's opinions of their time with Chef Palmer and their respective relationships with the chef. Basically, Bryan's the "good son," and Michael seems like a bit of a bad boy. I asked both of them more about Charlie in our Burning Questions blog, and you can see both of their answers HERE. The chefs had to create dishes to pair with Alexia crunchy snacks. I had never heard about these things until the show, but I was walking in D'Agostino's last week and what do I see for the first time ever? Alexia crunchy snacks! I'm pretty tempted to make a purchase, especially since the chefs actually seemed to like them. (Update since I first wrote this: I bought the onion strips, and their similarity to actual fried onions is kind of uncanny, aaand I think I ate too many. Oof.) In the bottom of the Quickfire, we had Ash, Robin, and Jennifer Caroll with an overcooked pork chop. In the top were the Southern boys and Bryan. Eli wins. Oh, and we find out Eli lives with his mom. So, there's that. I guess I have no comment because I still have friends who live with their parents, and I did for quite some time to save money, but for some reason, I think this explains a lot.

19 comments
Pat in Chicago
Pat in Chicago

Please, please, please I hope you bring back the videos showing the latest PPYKAG'd cheftestant coming to the elimination house and the reception they receive. Last year's videos were very illuminating! GO KEVIN!

lindie
lindie

I realize that this week the chefs did prepare pork, but this season in general there seems to be so much fish and shellfish used. I am from the midwest and althought we have great seafood here, more often you will see a large selection of beef, pork, chicken. How about using turkey? Something other then scallops!!!! (which I do love, by the way.)

PeachPie
PeachPie

"LCrawfty: I think Eli and Mike Isabella needs to make their next reality tv appearances on Tool Academy"

I laughed out loud at that!!!

bmatt
bmatt

As a new TC season viewer (I just upgraded my dish program to get this show) I'm a little disappointed with the "age" thing that's going on. Can the Chef's leave the age comments out and just focus on the talent they all have and just have fun with it? You have me as a middle age Mother out there watching and wanting to learn from these folks but feeling the need to turn off the show when the "Grandma" comments are being said. The competition is fun but not at the expense of an uncomfortable viewer. Perhaps the Chef's should try some Idaho wine and chill out some more.

Sherri L.
Sherri L.

Will Charlie Palmer blog this episode? I was really impressed by him for some reason.

I think Ash is a great guy and I like him alot (I will miss him) but I never felt he was a contender for the top prize. The other chefs need to get over Robin. She won't win the top prize either. She does seem annoying but she was chosen to compete so just accept it guys and choose to act with respect like Kevin and Ash.

tteach
tteach

Last season Bravo posted the cumulative scorecard for the season for each chef contestant. It was updated every week so you could see how many quickfire and elimination wins each chef had. How come it is not shown this season? I think it was helpful and interesting to see.

Bronn Stone
Bronn Stone

What advantage (if any) did Eli earn for winning the quickfire? If there was one, it didn't survive the edit.

DavidNYC
DavidNYC

I liked the show this week though I echo what has already been said about wine from plastic cups... I mean do they not have an IKEA in Nevada? 6 glasses for

Ash's departure was disappointing but I can see why he had to go... better to send him than to send Robin despite the way she seems to come off as annoying on the show. At least Robin has faith in herself - she does her effing pilates in the middle of the lawn even if she looks a bit foolish - I got really tired of Ash putting himself down or following other people then kicking himself for it. I don't think he let down NYC chefs... the rest of us NYC gays on the other hand... we will just have to have a stern talking to him at our next meeting about how we are all snowflakes and how that is a good thing - you don't have to be a Mike V. imitation snowflake.

As a side note has anyone else noticed a certain antipathy that Brian holds for Kevin? Just generally keeping up with the posts on here whenever Brian mentions Kevin he always gets in a not-so-subtle jab. Then there is the stew room incident which may have had less to do with his brother and more to do with who was asking?

John R.
John R.

As a Wine Lover~

This was the most disappointing episode "EVER"

Charlie Palmer - and a Master sommelier drinking from Plastic. Are you freakin kidding me???? I am not a Sommelier, but I have learned from the best to NEVER EVER drink wine from Plastic. You loose all of the aromas and some of the flavors of the wine by doing that. They disappear~ Why would a big event like this, pouring beautiful expensive wines pour them into stupid acrylic tumblers no less. This is an embarrassment to wine lovers around the world to see all these so called experts talking about the food and wine pairing when they are sniffing wine that you cant even swirl from a plastic cup.

Unbelievable~ Please hire me TOP CHEF~ I will set your wine world straight~

Cheers~

Ryerann
Ryerann

I LOVE TOP CHEF- my favorite season is Every season! this season I love Michael and Brian- although Kevin is growing on me- he is an excellent chef!- I like Jennifer too. I'm still suprised Robin is still competing-she is not really "Top Chef" worthy- but that is only my opinion. the judges are going to have a hard time with this one- I can't wait to see the final (3)!!!! I'm not a chef at all just a regular home style cook- but it is so fun watching the chefs work- keep up the good work!

julia
julia

Love your blog...this season has been the best..regarding Robin I think the opinions of the other chefs seem to be based on her personality more than her cooking since laureen and ash aren't much better.

A1gray
A1gray

Poor Robin! She obviously isn’t the strongest cook on the show however; there is never a good reason or excuse to be down-right mean and nasty. Shame on Mike Isabella and Eli; they are silly little boys who need a good time-out. Maybe Eli’s mom should take away a few privileges and teach him some much-needed manners.

LCrawfty
LCrawfty

I think Eli and Mike Isabella needs to make their next reality tv appearances on Tool Academy. Eli is very immature for 25, he lives at home (I`m sure his girlfriend loves that) and constantly downgrades Robin, even though he should have been sent home last week. Mike calls her grandma even though she's about 10 years older than him and in better shape. There's a big difference between being an annoying chatterbox and being a mean or passive aggressive person. Their rude behavior is a sign of their insecurity, you don't see Brian, Kevin, or Jen, acting out to Robin like that.

Done
Done

The viewers everywhere else on the Internet are disgusted by the anti-Robin behavior. They don't, as you imply, think she deserves the vile treatment she's been subjected to. I had to turn off the episode before it ended last night because this is not entertainment. I won't be watching again. You and your production team should be ashamed of yourselves.

Lynda S
Lynda S

Boy, Eli is so immature, he's practically infantile. I really don't appreciate the online voting of who's a better person (Eli vs Robin). It's demeaning to both. The better chef (for cooking) is far more important than who's more popular. The treatment Robin is getting in the house is very Marcelesque. Is someone going to shave her head?

Now - I liked this challenge very much. It was similar to the S-1 Napa Valley (Shafer wine and truffle) challenge. The pork dishes looked divine. Yumm-O!

PeachPie
PeachPie

About Umami: In your defense, I don't think it's odd you didn't know what it meant. You, and most of the rest of us who watch, aren't chefs. And it's a word that has only recently come into vogue. Probably most of America hadn't heard the word until a mass produced soy sauce company decided to use it in their commercials (have you seen it yet?).

Part of the fun of TC, for me, is seeing new techniques and ingredients I've never cooked with.

Ah what a great season. I think this is going to be the hardest yet, as I dread the knowledge each week that I might see my hopefuls get the boot.

Cellars of Sonoma
Cellars of Sonoma

Top Chef,

Really enjoyed the show tonight titled "Pig and Pinot"! it was great to see a number of great Pinot Noir showcased from Sonoma and Napa!

We are a new family owned and operated business that opened 7 months ago in Santa Rosa CA. We are a collective of 9 small boutique vintners ( www.cellarsofsonoma.com ), with several who make spectacular Pinot Noir!

We have incredible wines that might interest you! our most recent addition is Heidi Peterson Barrett with her La Sirena label!

Just wanted to say hello! really enjoyed the show, and extend an invitation if your ever in the area to stop by and visit us at Cellars of Sonoma!

CHEERS!

Michael Westerberg Vice President of Operations

KatieB
KatieB

Actually, many of your viewers are disgusted by the chefs and their treatment of Robin. She's evidently no worse a cook than half the others that have been on the show. Yeah, she's annoying, but they're all like a pack of coyotes. I say coyotes because apparently they're cowardly, hanging back and whispering, being nasty behind her back, and except for Eli don't seem to have the guts to just tell her what they think. They'll only bite when it's safe. I hope they realize how they're coming off in front of the viewing audience. I'd never eat the food of such bitter individuals.

Note: Kevin has been, as far as I can tell, a complete gentleman about all of this. Bryan too, at least on camera. The rest need a spanking, because they're sure not acting like adults.

mariah
mariah

I also favor German reislings and am new to pinot noir. Am i confused or are they they there to cook? How cares who likes who in the house- if you put a bad dish out, you're out. Also, i was at a large liquor/wine store last week and they tried to talk me out of the pinot noir. He said that after Sideways there was a run on noir and they aren't that great. I took his advice and got something else, but any suggestions would be great!