Cast Blog: #TOPCHEF

Chuy's Dad Can Do Anything

Hugh Acheson reveals the real reason he's not in the episode.

The chefs are packing it up from the luxury digs in San Antonio and going to Dallas! After getting into the requisite v necks to show off tans and tattoos, they get piled into the Toyota minivans, or forewith referred to as the “Motor Dens of Contemplation,” or MDCs. Heather is leading the way in the front Toyota MDC. There is a different, very serious chat going on in each MDC. Heather’s brother gets car sick. Ed happily broke down and married his wife, Ty-Lor has a boyfriend and cannot laugh and drive at the same time. Chris has recently lost 70 pounds and has exchanged his XXL Chef Works for more sporty fuschia chest-huggin’ shirts. In all seriousness, that is awesome. Proud Crary keep on burnin’, rollin’, rollin’, rollin’ down the river. Now stop being so damn creepy around Padma.

There may be a warrant out for the arrest of Dakota in Texas, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Prince Edward Island. She’s a little distressed. That cop would’ve freaked me out too. Stay strong and don’t cry, Dakota.

John Besh in the house. The mastermind of Marine tactics and Nawlins cookery will be judging this one. Not much information on the survival ingredients the chefs must use as their larder, but many things appear that have never been seen in survival kits anywhere. Moto Chris is seen playing “Children of the Corn,” but the game just ain’t the same without Richie. They are opening cans with all manners of implements. Evidently a can opener was not on the survivalist guide. Around my neck of the woods that kit would have a wine key, a shotgun, ammo, water and a little bit of food -- not all to be used simultaneously.Lindsay’s dad loves Vienna sausages. I have never ever had Vienna sausages but Ryan at Empire State South makes some great pickled red hots… those are good. Maybe I will come up with a line of survival foods. It would be called, No Choice, but it would be good. Trust me. (Reading this blog is a lot about trusting me if you haven’t noticed. I am the guy who will always catch you when we do the backwards trust fall thing.)

Herring juice is a term that never gets positive nods. Grayson will now strike that one from the permanent vocabulary.

The bottom three is Whitney, Chris, and Dakota. Two out of three had canned crabmeat in their dishes, which sets us straight on the merits of canned crab. Whitney made green bean casserole, which may be a step down from what was in the can to begin with. Don’t get discouraged young Jedi!

Chuy, Lindsay, and Ed in the tops category. Lindsay’s homage takes the cake but, dude, Ed’s dish looked pretty f---ing rad. Nice to see him get some goodness going. Remember, at this point in the series Ed has cut himself more than a blindfolded pumpkin carver. Lindsay rocks the win with her Vienna delight. Saltins sandwiches are going to be the new thing in Florida… trust me?

Hotel time. Dallas style. Off to a bunch of mansions. The mansion-istas, I mean owners, are all completely over the top.

The first hostess doesn’t like cilantro, bell peppers, food that makes people feel self-conscious, or food that gets stuck in your teeth, but has a real want for all the food to be pink, an idea she thankfully jettisons. The real reason I am not on this episode has now become abundantly clear: these people would have driven me crazy. I would have ordered a round of protein smoothies with skin toner/lip enhancer for the diners, screamed something obscene, and taken the chefs out to that new In-N-Out burger that just opened up off the highway. (No joke -- the place had a two hour wait when I did go.)  

Moto Chris is beating around the bush and should ask his real question: If I make something really weird and possibly tasty, would that earn me points with you? “My wedding cake was a big gummie bear.” Geez Louise. Where did they find these people? Did that guy just tell four chefs to make something that would make his “inner fat kid” happy? I want this rich white guy to channel how it feels to be poor, obese, and living with diabetes, then we’ll break bread.

Edward’s back is Brokeback. No comment.

Chris Jones is going to push the envelope for the whitest of white people ever. These folks want white bread food with edible gold on top. Plain Jane is going to win this thing. An edible cigar is the wrong thing to do but that’s what Moto has in store for us…. I would cheer for an edible dip tobacco medley though, or an edible bottle of arsenic, to truly illustrate edible versions of things you never would want to eat.

Paul Qui is self-critical which is a good attribute in chefs who push themselves daily. Continues to be a rock star.

Gail is Canadian, so is the pink-loving, cilantro-hatin’ hostess. They hate Chris’ cigar. Pinky calls it “daunting,” but I think she says Dante, like the fifth rung of Purgatory in the Inferno. I am suddenly in love with the hostess.

They love the Paul’s Brussels sprouts. Tom rolls his eyes as a woman exclaims that that Lindsay’s beets are colorful. Whitney’s scallop is deemed pretty blah. That’s better than salty scallop syndrome, which I suffered through once. I recovered though. Trust me. 

Ty-Lor has a f---ing potty mouth on him. Actually they all do, which confuses the heck out of my seven-year-old, who wonders what’s up with all the bleeps. All of the mains look rough around the edges. Chuy’s goat cheese salmon is not loved at all. Scallops again, but this time from Beverly, and they get a nice response. Nyesha plates up a pretty awesome looking beef plate that is way too fancy for these peeps. Some utter scared squeals, ”Blood! Oh my gawd.” As if this meat was always dead and bloodless. On top of that, it’s actually the sauce on the plate that she is freaking out about. Awe well, I thought it looked great. Note to Nyesha… they want more gilded, less good! T- Lor’s dish looks like a pork trainwreck. Dakota is killing this bread pudding thing. Chris is busy getting everything that has ever contained sugar on one plate. Whipped Cream and Many Many Many Unfocused Delights.

“Edward’s plate was jiggly looking.” It’s f---ing panna cotta. Again, another instance why I don’t get invited fancy places. There are some wealthy Texans that hate me right now. Sorry.

Tops: Grayson, Dakota, Paul, and Sarah. Paul wins. Rocking Brussels in the burning heat of summer. Ballsy. He simply channeled his inner good chef.

Bottoms is Chuy, Crary, Ty-Lor, and Moto Chris. I thought Crary was gone, but it’s Chuy with the salmon, based on lox, a schmear and a bagel, that screamed wrong.