She, of course, chooses Stephanie and Richard -- and the dream team was created. They get the extra help of Nikki to help roll out some pasta dough. All I could think when they chose her was "Poor Nikki" -- all people will think she can make is pasta! Sigh. Anyway, what I would have loved to have seen is the separation of those two. Do you agree? Who do you think would have won if Richard and Stephanie were on different teams? They create a fairly standard gastro pub menu, which is apparently kinda new to the Chicago scene, as Stephanie discloses in our discussion with her this week HERE. And Dale, Lisa, and Spike, with the addition of Jennifer, chose to go Asian, which was expected since they all specialize in various forms of Asian cuisine.
Bourdain, obviously, brought up a good point that Asia's a big place, and to do all of the different types of Asian cuisine well is difficult. I would also argue that they probably shouldn't' have stuck to such traditional dishes or at least changed them up a bit so there wasn't as much of a reference for the judges, and therefore less disappointment. Although they didn't know they'd be serving Bourdain, who loves Asian cuisine and has made the effort to travel throughout most of the continent, they should have assumed the judges would know their stuff.