Editor's Note: Tom is a new father again! He and his wife Lori, as well as sons Dante and Luka, welcomed new son Mateo Lev yesterday. He'd like all to know that both mother and baby are doing well, and he appreciates all the well wishes they've been receiving. As you all can imagine, he's had no time to blog about this week's episode, but he'll do his best to post it in the next day or two.
You are indeed a class act and an incredible asset to To Chef. Wishing you joy, health & happiness with the new addition to the family. Many thanx to your priceless contribution to the show/franchise
Congratulations Tom. I wish blessings to you, your wife Lori, sons Dante and Luka and new-born baby-son, Mateo
I have never posted before but why was Antonia sent home when her food was voted 4 to Mike's 3 votes. Why have these well know chefs judging their food when Top Chef will advance the one with the least votes. I understand viewers do not taste the food but when we watch what these well known chefs say and judge and the majority vote goes home why have them on the show judging. Looks like the star judges had their mind made up before the food was even serve on who they wanted in the final. Let's see if this one gets posted.
K for Baton Rouge
I meant to put this on my previous comment to the blog--- Congrats on the new addition to your family..
very sad to see Antonia get voted off tonight. I believe you were very wrong in your decision. It should have been Richard and Antonia in the final. Cheaters should not be given a pass, even for t.v. ratings.
Dear Tom Colicchio .I don't understand why you would hurt Antonia feeling with the dish she made.she made the best dish and you know this.mike should have been tossed out this go around he had the weakest dish.
Just finished watching Top Chef tonight, and really amazed at the fact that the top chef judges cannot do math. Last time I checked, four is higher than three and yet Mike Isabella is going to the finals ( he only got three votes) and Antonia (she received four) was sent packing. How can you justify that four chefs choose Antonia's late bite challenge over Michael's dish on national television and then tell the last two contestants that it was a tough call that it came down to 4 against 3, and you sent the chef with the four votes home! I am so disgusted. Obviously this was so apparently not fair! So long Top Chef, you really need to rename the show to "Chef That I Like"
YOU ARE WRONG! I know ANTONIA can out cook the CHEATER MIKE. You guys just wanted to have RICHARD go head to head with the CHEATER. "JUST FOR THE DRAMA" RICHARD vs THE CHEATER MIKE. I AM SO UPSET> THIS SHOW IS BEGINING TO BE SO PREDICTABLE AND UNFAIR. I DONT THINK I WILL WATCH THE FINALLY. I CAN PREDICT RICHARD WINS. ANYWAY YOU ALL F----ED UP CAUSE ANTONIA WAS THE ONLY CHEF TO COMPETE AT RICHARDS LEVEL.
THESE ARE THE FACTS JERYM.
I appreciate Tom and his role on Top Chef. He is a important part of the Top Chef chain. It wouldn't be the same without him.
Congrats on your new addition!
Obviously, your mind was not on this last challenge that sent poor Antonia home. The expression on your face was disinterest and distracted! Yet, your fellow New Jerseyan, Mike was spared the ax. How kind of you to keep him in the game, even though his fried chicken's crust fell off and the bird was dry. That's kind of the most important part of the dish, right? As for his bland tartare, you voted FOR it as opposed to the flavorful morsel from Antonia. Frankly, this end note to the lackluster season finishes flat for me. There was NO surprise to advancing both boys here. None whatsoever. You should never play poker because your show your intentions on your face.
Oh man. It happened again...Antonia out even though she got 4 votes? I'm missing something here... =(
Tom, I'm sorry but I'm not even going to watch the final episode. This has turned into Top Chef Survivor and it's just not good anymore. I'd like to see great chefs cook great meals, not run an obstacle course and try to undercut each other. It's not fair when Mike gets to choose what his opponents have to do. It's too bad, I've been loving the show for a long time but can't stomach it any longer.
It seemed to me that Tom had a predisposition towards Mike, and was willing to find any excuse to keep him in the game. Wolfgang Puck said, as the tiebreaker, something like, when I wake up tomorrow, what dish will I remember, "Antonia's." The camera cut away, but I am willing to bet that Tom talked him out of his vote for Antonia with his "that curry flavor was too strong" nonsense. He wanted to advance Mike and so he did. The toughest judge there, who had no dog in the fight, was Morimoto, and he chose Antonia, despite not being impressed with her "last supper" dishes. I think Tom liked Mike personally and let that cloud his judgement as far as swaying the tie breaking judge's vote over from Antonia's side to Mike's. Which is a shame, since Mike's "last bite" seemed unimaginitive and lame, if expensive. And everyone agreed the tartare was underseasoned. Boo, hiss, Tom Colichio.
Hope you enjoyed sending Submitted by Non-yo Bizness on March 24, 2011.
Hope you enjoyed sending Antonia home for a bland piece of tartar that Gail said she despised.
Btw, an amuse bouche comes before the meal not after, so there is nothing wrong with Antonia's "bite" being "powerful" in flavor. Seems like you, and Bravo, have been hand feeding Mike I. wins; even having Tom defend his outright theft of Richards dish.
I swear if Mike I., that disgusting, oafish, childish, egotistical loud mouth wins the title of Top Chef All Star I will forever ban the viewing of Top Chef, Bravo, or any affiliated networks in my household. Permanently.
Tom, congratulations on your new addition!
You and Padma are my favorite judges on the show. I'm not always in agreement with the panel's decisions, but you two generally come across as sincere. Don't care much for for Anthony's style (although he seems to be toning down the abrasiveness) and Gail is overexposed (now that she is also doing Top Chef: Just Desserts), so I would love to see Top Chef switch it up next season. Surely there are other master chefs out there who could judge for the duration? There are some wonderful personalities out there I can think of.
I have been reading the blogs and there is some question about the quick fire. Mike was supposed to use one pot but he used two he used a pressure cooker "pot" and a regular pot. Wouldn't this be a violation of the quick fire rules?
Congratulations on your new baby. Don't pay attention to the jerks whose lives revolve around reality tv.
All I can say is I just canceled my planned recording of the last episode of top chef; I couldn't care less which one of the last two remaining idiots will this "competition"
Just read a TV Guide story that explains how Wolfgang Puck "voted" for Antonia's dish on-camera, then was persuaded by Colicchio off-camera to vote for Mike's dish instead. After watching every season, every episode of Top Chef, I'm done with the series. Unfair judging and Colicchio's quote to TV Guide, which was basically that the fans could suck it while Gail joked that the judging was "Bahamas-gate" shows that this franchise doesn't care anymore about its viewers.
for wolfgang to say that the one bite he wanted the next day was antonia's should been enough to break the tie instead of him waffling over whether mike's technical skills on a somewhat bland and 'not a wow' (according to michelle b.) dish. antonia's was meant to be a punch of taste - if you are given one bite. mike's was not composed as a one bite! without the sauces that were not already on the food it was incomplete. the challenge seemed to suggest litterally one bit on a spoon - not another appetizer.
VERY disappointed that antonia went home. she was so deserving and would have been a formidable rival to richard.
First let me say Mazel to Tom & Lori and the new addition to your family. God Bless your family! I thought Antonia got a raw deal....I do. I know the judges are the professionals here, but really. She has always been my favorite. As one of the other posts mentioned Chef Puck apparently broke the tie vote. Then Mike wins I hope he will know how to conduct himself in the finale. Top Chef has be come very predictable. But even in my disappointment I will continue to watch. Good Luck Richard I hope that this is a win for you.
Hi Chef, so...another surprising ending. It's getting totally heart-breaking to watch all the deserving chefs go home while a certain someone is still hanging there and being given wins at the last few round just to even the competition between him and the other more deserving finalist...
Hey Tom congrats on your new addition! Hope you're helping with diaper duty!
Gotta say I'm more than a little disappointed in the results of the finals. I should have stopped watching weeks ago when Jen got tossed out for chicken feet and Jaime stayed although she didn't even cook for the 2nd time. Top Chef has really gone down hill.
Congrats on the baby, Tom. Now down to business....I was disappointed by the format and outcome of last night's show. Antonia deserved to get the win. These chefs worked for weeks, and it's down to one bite? Mikey, you have just guaranteed yourself a loss in the finale with Richard...although my girl Antonia would have handed you your hat if given the chance. Congrats on a great season, Antonia! Enjoy the car~
Congrats Tom! We have a winner of Top Chef, season 34...:)
Anyhoo, Mike Isabella did OK in the toughest season so far(#6 with Voltaggios and Gillespie), and it´s certainly possible for him to improve in that time. He´s not the nicest guy(really!?), but I watched "season6 reunion" just now, and that´s how the man functions in these conditions. Maybe better than Blais? Still "Team Blais" all the way, and I´m gonna cry with Richard, no matter what happens. Blais promised tears!...And I want tears!...Hell, even BRAVO wants tears..
Congratulations to Tom, Lori, and the rest of his wonderful family. To all of you saying that Tom has seemed a bit "sour" this season, somewhat like Richard may have seemed a bit more "neurotic" than usual, I guess we may all know the reason, assuming it's even true - both men were away from their wives as they were about to give birth.Obviously both of these men are caring, family men, so the fact that they were away from their families this amount of time, especially their wives towards the end of their pregnancies, I think it's safe to say that it was probably stressful on both of them.
Rather than find fault with Tom and Richard, perhaps we should rejoice in the fact that we have two male role models instead; fathers who are so dedicated to being great husbands and fathers - as well as having two fantastic wives - they are also obviously extremely supportive of their husbands, working the crazy hours of chefs, not to mention "cheftestants" on Top Chef during the course of their pregnancy.
Just a quick word about the final three show. Like many others, I, too, was disappointed in how the group was pared down to a couple in that the cooking challenge was not done on an even playing field so the cheftestants couldn't be judged under similar "conditions". Perhaps if all three cheftestants had to cook a final meal for all three celebrity chefs, then it might be fair, or if the cuisines were at least similar the challenge would have been fair. Also, perhaps editing took away the chefs shopping for ingredients, but to make matters worse, Antonia didn't even have good food to work with; it seemed like every card was stacked against her...This finale probably should have been Antonia versus Richard; I say probably because we'll never know - there wasn't a level playing field and Antonia wasn't given a fair chance against the other two.
The finale next week should be very interesting - will the determination come down to just the meal or will they take into consideration how the cheftestants actually "run" their restaurants as well when they select the next Top Chef (remember the early years when they spoke to the Sous Chefs?)...If that's the case, then Richard should have a leg up because he's consistently been able to work with teams as a leader and better liked than Mike. On the other hand, if Mike and Richard are arbitrarily assigned teams and they get stuck with a former, or several, cheftestants who can't/won't pull their weight or follow directions (remember what happened to Carla in New Orleans when she listened to her Sous Chef, or when Kevin, I believe, got stuck with Previ, in TC Las Vegas)? Or remember what happened to Richard during his last finale? He started with a Sous chef; preparing a bold menu, just to lose him and ran out of time to complete the meal on his own as he wanted to do - There may be some twist that can throw a cheftestant under the bus and give the title to either of them regardless of their cooking skills...
One final point; I'm not sure about Mike, but I do know that Richard has successfully opened restaurants in the past, so he knows how to do this; does Mike have experience running his own restaurant? If not, he may not be prepared to handle all of the stress that goes with being responsible for/managing every aspect of the operations of a successful restaurant. There's more to it than just meals being conceived, prepped, prepared, and then delivered to the table. Richard has done this, even to the point he's been able to join his guests at table side during their meals, checking on their food, even surprising them with food "gifts" at times...
Given enough time, and the right help, I have no doubt Richard would blow this challenge out of the water. He has the skills, temperament, and experience to do so. Mike, on the other hand, I'm not so sure about. His chef/cooking "skills" seem to have improved since Las Vegas, but his attitude seems just as crude, rude, and socially unacceptable. Mike isn't the leader that Richard is, so I doubt his kitchen would run as smoothly, and personally, my bet is that if the heat is on in the kitchen, and things start to get rough, Mike would not react well to the stress with his staff (remember kitchen wars?). After everything seen on this season's show, and listening to all of the exit interviews, it seems clear that what we have in this year's finale is an epic battle of "good versus evil;" Richard versus Mike. May the best cheftestant win, and my that cheftestant be Richard.
Count me out for the finale...Richard is a mental case,Mike is a phoney,Antonia was the best throughout the competition....I don,t care who you choose Antonia was and is the WINNER!
Congratulations on your new family addition Tom.
I still hate Mike and continue on the Richard train CHOO CHOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I love this show but I think it is changing for the worst. Mike is a cheater and should have been voted off a long time ago. The final two should be the best two and that is Antonia and Richard. Tom your losing your touch. Congratulations the healthy birth. I hope Richard kicks the cheaters butt. He is no where near the checf that Antonia is. Anotnia you were robbed.
I'm a big Antonia fan and was very sorry to see her go, but for those comments that are saying she had 4 votes, did you hear something I didn't. I heard 3 to 3 and then Wolfgang Puck said he would remember Antonia's dish the next day, but he didn't say he would vote for her dish or that it was the best. Then they went to commercial break and came back to Please Pack your Knives. They edited out his actual vote as commercial cliffhanger and we are supposed to realize he voted for Mike. Also congrats to Tom and his family!
People . . . it was 4 votes to 3 on that one bite, not on the entire challenge. I may have to rewatch, but I'm pretty sure no one said the winner of that one portion of the challenge was guaranteed to go to the finale. They were judged on the totality of their efforts for the entire challenge. Trying to second guess the judges is a waste of time. If you did not eat the food, you are not equipped to pass judgement.
Many congratulations, Tom. Enjoy these previous first days with your newborn.
Was VERY disappointed that Antonia was not chosen given all the comments and how Mike's dish did not WOW. She seemed to put out a tasty morsel that Chef Wolfgang Puck said he'd want the next morning if it was the first thing he had to choose to taste. Plus it seemed that Mike's dish was not 'one bite' unless you made sure you put everything together. For one component to be really off (the olive caramel) on its own to me makes his dish less superior and not more.
Antonia was steady and smart and composed fantastic dishes throughout the season. She proved herself to be strong, level-headed, creative, and extraordinary throughout without putting people down or demeaning them (as Isabella often does - especially to 'women chefs' - he really seems so surprised and sour when a female is able to out-compete and out-cook him).
Antonia - I know you feel terribly but this competition allowed you to shine to the world. I wish you all the very best success and hope that you are not haunted by going home at the end - because you should be very, very proud at making it this far and really it was anyone's game. Mike won out by a hair, and there are a lot of us out here in the world, judging by blog comments, who felt you were the superior chef over Mike.
Too bad!!!!!!!!!!!!! Antonia had the eye appealing dish and probably the most flavorful on the the one bite dish! She also has the best attitude towards people!
Tom, congrats on the new baby !! Being able to do such a great job at the Beer dinner Friday, while mama is due anytime... well that's why I trust your decisions on Top Chef even when the editing would indicate a different outcome. Keep up the great work.
Blew it big time. No one is going to like the choice to send Antonia packing. From the editing it looked patently unfair. Mike's food did not measure up, he clearly came in third. I may give up on the series after this joke of an ending.
I can't believe that you sent Antonio home!!!!!! I have watched every one of the Top Chef seasons, and by far this one is the worst judge's table I have ever seen. I agree with the others, I think you're all just looking for good ratings and what's going to be good viewer TV, so much for fairness!!!!!! I know you'll come up with some savvy excuses, and say there were things we weren't privileged enough to see as viewers, and you'll make tons of excuses as to why cheater, cheater, pumpkin eater Mike got to go up against Richard. You have a way with words Tom, but I'm not falling for them. It would have been much more fun to see Richard and Antonio go head to head in my opinion, and as the blogs suggest, I think they agree. You all were wrong on this one!
I know Tom is going to comment on this week's episode soon, but I feel like I need to step in and respond to the folks here who "saw" Antonia get 4 votes to Mike's 3. I think this was a case of Bravo's tricky editing confusing the viewers, as it did me until I rewound and listened again (thank god for TIVO). It all came down to Wolfgang Puck's vote, as it was tied 3 - 3 at that point. He said the dish he would remember the next morning would be Antonia's.....big pause....but Mike's was technically better. "It is a very tough decision..." So you see he never made his vote clear on air. Bravo wanted us to keep guessing through the commercial break who would get his vote, and it turned out to be Mike. Hey, I prefer Antonia too, but you can't deny Mike has upped his game considerably lately, and his bold moves have paid off.
Congratulations on your new addition...as someone mentioned earlier..Colicchio and sons....I see the start of something big!
As far as Wednesday's show - very disappointed in the decision...can't believe what happened. I have posted only a few times, but this season has really had some dare I say "strange" things happen...some unfair....some just plain ridiculous...I have to say I'm not even looking forward to the finale...that's how disappointed I am.