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Bravotv.com: And then we get to the ice cream, which might be the most contentious part of his meal.
GS: Right. Well what we tasted and what Tom and Padma tasted were totally different. It wasn't Richard's most finessed dish of all time, and he knew it. But when we compared it to Mike's dessert, it was still far stronger in its concept, in its flavors. It was a conversation piece; foie gras ice cream is interesting. It did work; I got what he meant by it. Would I order a scoop of it in a sugar cone over the summer, no, but it added that sort of really rich creaminess and earthiness. There was also fresh mango and whipped mango on that cornbread, and it all kind of seemed crazy, like how do foie gras and mango on cornbread have anything to do with each other? The cornbread was sort of like a canvas, but it was really well made. It was just sweet enough, but not too sweet that it was too much with the mango. And the mango was nice. You know we were in the tropics, and that was the only ingredient we ate all night that felt tropical, so it was kind of refreshing. The texture of the whipped mango was similar to the texture of the foie gras, which was interesting because they had such different flavors.
Bravotv.com: Do you think Richard's initial idea for Cap'n Crunch ice cream would have worked with the rest of the menu?
GS: It's hard to tell. It would really depend texturally on how it came out, because it might almost have tasted too much like the cornbread. Cornbread and Cap'n Crunch are both kind of starchy, so I think it was actually smart that he chose to do something different.
Bravotv.com: So what are your final messages to Richard and Mike?
GS: There have been many Judges' Tables that go late into the night and I've left the dinner table not knowing the answer, and this was certainly one of them and in some ways even more exaggerated. We all disagreed for a while. We struggled because it was not a clear path. In the end, they both did a really great job and they really impressed me all season, so I'm proud of both of them. I am excited for both of them and the opportunities that will come to them. You get so attached to people, so it was really hard for us to let go of Mike. But when we went back and thought about the dishes, we just thought that Richard had with all his components a slightly stronger advantage in the outcome of his dishes. He went bolder, he took more risks, and 99 percent of them were executed successfully. He showed us so much more of who he was consistently. This was just a really consistent culmination of a meal for Richard. It was the meal that we hoped he would cook. He didn't stray from the chef that he was from the moment he walked on-set for All-Stars up to that day. It felt deserved in every way.
Bravotv.com: Are you excited for Desserts?
GS: I can't even imagine… I need a little break!
You got me so excited for the pepperoni sauce. Any chance you can post the recipe? Or is it now a top-secret phenomenon...If so, it is well deserved. I liked Mike. THE PEPPERONI SAUCE SOUNDS AMAZING!!
Gail, have you thought much about retiring? Or perhaps changing professions? You would make a great restaurant critic. I hear Mikey is opening a new restaurant which could keep you busy for the next year or two.
I agree...the pepperoni sauce is the ONE dish that I would like to make myself and serve...please post it and give us suggestions as to what to serve it with.
Gail, Thanks for your in depth comments. Your description of the dishes has made me hungry... I'm certainly satisfied with the outcome of THIS contest. Finally - the chef I wanted to win - WON! It's about time.
Gail, Thank you Sooo much for a woderful show and PLEASE give Padma Our Love!!!! Question: Is there ANY way that Fans Can Get hands on this Isabella's Pepperoni's Sauce? Perhaps it can be on the Next Top Chef Book? Thanks!!!
Didn't Richard make a "Vitello Tramonto" with hamachi and crispy sweetbread nuggets in the High Steaks episode of Season 4? What was so different about this season's dish?
Richard was great! I'm so glad he didn't choke like before. He deserves the title of Top Chef All Stars! Are there going to be any more Top Chef? How do you top this seasons all star cast? My aunt (Phyllis Hanes) was a food critic, wine taster, and the food editor for The Christian Science Monitor in Boston. She once told me she had the best job in the world! Will Gail continue being a judge and food critic? Any more Top Chef-Just Desserts in the making?
Sweden here... How you gonna top "all stars" for season 9? I already suggested Marco Pierre White from UK and Rene from NOMA, but BRAVO keep eating my posts. I´d love to see Marco Pierre White in that environment...Marco has charisma and scares the "you now what" out of even Gordon. Ohh, and he´s a Michelin-chef. "Make it work"...:) Obviously season 7 was weak, and "all stars" was a strong season. So now what? And just for the record, I have a little crush on Gail..think sweden, vikings, Thor, Curtis Stone 2.0 from scandinavia..I´m yours Gail....:)
I understand a little bit why you got rid of Elia but out of the competition that was up there I mean Stephen is a garbage chef and he had no business even being there you should of got rid of him and let Elia stay on to prove herself.
Then you send up Jennifer who is one of the most skilled chefs there for bashing you guys and I don't care what you say you sent her home because she spoke her mind and you guys didn't like that. You should of hands down sent Jamie home the girl can't cook and she ducks out on every challenge.
Getting rid of Casey kind of didn't make much sense either, You guys set up the challenge to have 2 people come up and say oh I will expedite food and I will rely on someone else to do my dish, I mean someone has to do it because you guys put that into play. Casey's dish would of probably been better if she was cooking it and I know you might say oh well she offered it's tough well I probably can say with a guarantee that anyone who did that was probably going home. I mean that challenge everyone did garbage and you sent Casey home who showed Antonio how to do it and she couldn't do that and handle her dishes and sending her home was stupid! Jamie did terrible and you just let her stay on and makes no friggin sense at all.
You mine as well just tell them no one be a team leader , no one offer to help cook someones dish while they're out in the front of the house or doing this, I mean is it the producers who are stupid or the judges that just don't take anything into consideration?
Then of course you send Tre home who cooks Risotta different and you keep Mike who italian for christ sakes and he couldn't even cook pasta lol and the challenge was based on him doing pasta lol ss LOl. Like where is your brain LOL?
You judges just don't have a brain, You send Angelo home and he is one of the best chefs on the show and you could easily of sent home Tiff or Carla because they honestly don't have the level to cook at a top level chef,
Then of course you send home Dale and let Carla and Tiffany sit back and continue to do crappy and you keep giving them friggin chances but you don't give the acutally good chefs the chances you should of gave them way back before, I mean how many times do Carla and Tiff have to be at the bottom lol I mean use your brain.
All in all I was happy Richard one but his competition wasn't that great, The final five should of easily been Richard-Angelo-Casey-Jennifer-Marcel