Hugh Acheson

Hugh Acheson weighs in on the team dynamics in the Salt Lick BBQ challenge.

on Jan 4, 20120

We are starting out in drinky time at the haunted Driskill. I have happy thoughts about the fish and chips at the Bits & Druthers food truck where I eat soon after landing every time I go to Austin. Yummypants. 

Bev is not so sorry to have seen Heather get the Bigfoot boot off the show. Sarah is getting all potty mouthed towards Edward's allegations about Cakegate 2011, the borrowing of batter recipes. Darth Edward is playing to win in this and Sarah is not very impressed with his ways. We may have our new feud taking shape. 

Knock knock. Room service brings a set of books! Not just any books though, it’s Modernist Cuisine, the six volume, 52-pound, spectacularly-researched collection of molecular gastronomy. Rarely do people get this excited for a stack of books. I smell a molecular food moment coming very, very soon, or maybe that’s just Chris Crary’s Beefy Fonduta Edible Cologne. Beverly is going to stay up late reading the tome of Myhrvold, cause her parents pinned a note to her pajamas telling the producers that she can stay up past 10 p.m. for homework tonight.

Chris Jones is in geek heaven. Not since he and Richie got to play on the bunk beds has life been this good. “He (Myhrvold) is a genius. If I could be 1/10th as smart as he is I might rule a small continent.” So much for the benevolent Chris Jones: as a member of Foodie Cobra Command, Chris will rule and conquer small continents, through molecular gastronomy. Nathan Myhrvold went to college at age 14, is a billionaire, and can buy a small continent if he is feeling financially frisky, granted it would be Antarctica or Europe, both are melting into the lower price sphere. Chris has some work to do before he gets to rule continents, but mark my words, when you step foot on the Moto continent you had better style your hair appropriately. 

27 comments
TheCathodeRayMission
TheCathodeRayMission

It really is a shame that Chris C. was eliminated. The show is weaker without him: his radiant presence, his unwavering calm. So zen. If only, in the competition, he cooked from his roots, the judges could have a taste of his beauty...

Abrasive Chef
Abrasive Chef

Ed's attitude about Sarah was wrong. The medical professional called the ambulance. She didn't decide that it was time to slack off, she was having a medical emergency. She came back, and he was an ass. I would have the same opinion if it were Ed in the ambulance, and Sarah being an ass. Texas in the middle of a drought, and a heat wave, and no sleep, in the hot sun at a BBQ pit is a formula for disaster.

Chef Hugh, you are doing a fabulous job blogging. You are witty, insightful, and geeky enough to love and poke fun at Chris Jones' Trekkie/molecular gastronomy statements.

Christy M.
Christy M.

I live in Texas and I like Dr. Pepper bbq sauce...just sayin'.

freckledfoodie
freckledfoodie

Chef Hugh, you are right on...about everything!! I LOVE your quirky, story-timey, exciting thrill of vocabulary you unleash! It is simply, amaze-balls! Thank you for being a judge this season, your witt, charisma, and on-point opinions really give this season some, ooomph to say the least! Well done, and thank you for yummy pants!!

Viewer23213
Viewer23213

Chef Hugh,

I really like your blog. But I felt Ed's anger was justified. The way it was edited, Sarah left, then just came back to serve her chicken the judges, then went away again, leaving the boys who had worked all night, to do HER work as well as their own. They had to have helped with her chicken, or at least watched it, and now they're serving the customers Sarah's food as well as they're own, right? It'd be faster if Sarah was helping out, and then *everybody* on the team could rest -- so it did seem selfish of Sarah.

coloraturaElise
coloraturaElise

Oh, hooooo....I had to read much more slowly than I normally do because I was laughing so hard at EVERY SENTENCE! Fabulous work, Chef!

Amanda from Atlanta
Amanda from Atlanta

Hugh - I know this is unoriginal at this point but please keep writing! Your blog posts are far and away the funniest, smartest, and originalist (yeah, that's right) in all the seasons of Top Chef.

MagicFen
MagicFen

Brilliant Blog, Chef. I'm so glad you brought up the "I EAT VEGANS" shirt. It was nearly as classic as "I'm not your bitch, Bitch". I want one. I must have one. And I think Beverly is at least one doughnut shy of a dozen.

Nick Christie
Nick Christie

Fantastic post. The Cobra Commander reference was especially delightful.

For what it's worth, I empathize with Ed, although he certainly went out of his way to be indifferent/mean. When a team member (who is obese under any medical guidelines) gets heat exhasution, leaves, and then comes back to serve Chicken to the judges, and then leaves again? Count me unimpressed, although clearly the girl can cook, as evidenced by last challenge.

Lastly, rational person that you are: explain to us why top Chef couldn't provide some catering help in the actual serving of the food? This is Top Chef, i.e. top cooking. Having two guys slave away to put food on 300 plates doesn't help. If they had stuck to their guns rather than panic, would they have been criticized if only 200 people got food?

Biased Judge?
Biased Judge?

I do agree with the general sentiment that Ed could've been more supportive & compassionate but reading this blog i can't help but notice Hugh Acheson is biased. He clearly doesn't like Ed and augments all his errors but fails to even write about sarah's part of returning briefly just to serve the judges and then heading back to rest. And he is supposed to be a judge? In the coming weeks Ed is already down a vote regardless of how he performs!

Valkyre
Valkyre

Moto Chris was robbed on the Quickfire challenge! IMHO, his dish was much closer to the modernist standard of the cookbooks than Tay-lor's dish.

ChrisMorton
ChrisMorton

What happened to the line I read on this blog the other day, something to the effect that Ed needed to learn karma is a bitch... I thought it was a spoiler revealing Ed would later get axed on a future episode. Was it edited out?

Speaking of editing, I have been able to guess the eventual winner of the entire competition for the last couple of seasons based on that finale clip showing Padma announcing the winner as "You are the next Top Chef." She is always looking right at the winner, so whoever is standing in her line of sight in the finale is the winner. You all have to do a better job of editing these things!

FierceGoddess
FierceGoddess

In the WEEDS at the Haunted Driskill!!!!! Rock on, Hugh. Rock on Paul, my soulbro. Rock on Bev, you space cadet. Possession is fun! Sarah is channeling her missing comrade. EVP is fun too, except we are getting only the most commonplace of EVP requests: "GET OUT!!!!!"

It is voiced by Darth Edward and conveyed to Sneaky Sarah, who is trying to fill the bigfootprints of She Who Shall Not Be Named. Sarah is out to carry on schooling folks on Work Ethics and Team Contribution ... by joining up with The Immune One and Evil Edward. Sarah is strategic. And indirect. This time around. She's learning! Kevin will agree.

Alas, the Ed/Sarah match up will have to make room for the dreaded Restaurant Wars (which I have come to call KNIFE IN THE BACK episodes) judging by the Coming Attractions ... but I am a patient woman. I can wait. Ed is not fooled one bit. He was around during the Kevin-gate. His teeth weren't the only things he's been grinding. I can wait, I tell you! I'm sure Kevin will relish what looks to be a Lindsay vs. Sarah match to come. This time he cannot lose. The question, however, arises right about now.

Is this Top Zenmaster or Top Chef? Why so much sadism and buttonpushings? Another session of Nessun Dorma? In THAT heat? Jaysus.

Meanwhile ... back at the proverbial ranch ... This season 9 has been all about pickling. Pickled cherries. Pickled humor. Pickled faces. The Ghost of Kimchi is whispering to me that Moto Chris is now the weakest link. And probably was one even before now. The thing is, Continent Moto thinks he is twice the Continent Emeril. Two Bams. As in Bam + Bam. As in hairdo. The Kimchi Ghost also wants see a bit less corn. It's had a respectable run of 8 seasons, afterall. My biggest gripe with this episode was that Nyesha did not come back to replace Sarah, whom I had come to suspect would drop out of the competition altogether, from the previewings. Oh well. Something tells me Nyesha WILL find a way back, though. Somehow. She rocks.

Rock on, Chef Hugh. Of the achingly delicious fun.

ZacharyLeow
ZacharyLeow

MAN, NOW THE BEST PART OF WATCHING TOP CHEF IS BEING ABLE TO READ THIS BLOG AFTER ITS OVER. HONESTLY. COMEDY + TOP CHEF = MY DREAM SHOW.

SALUTE CHEF HUGH.

Sorry for caps.

Suggestion
Suggestion

Hugh, It's beneath you, but please consider also doing commentary on the real housewives episodes from now on. This blog is frigging brilliant and about 10 times more entertaining than the actual episode!

Miracle berry tree comment was priceless.

Sorry Texas....
Sorry Texas....

Hugh is bigger and better than TC Texas! Great blog Chef. Prefer readin these to actually (and painfully) watching this Drama-filled, Cohen painted season of Top Chef. More like a real Housewives episodes....

Richard Shirley
Richard Shirley

Hugh, I really enjoy your blog, but I think you are missing the point about Edward. What Sarah did is inexcusable in a competition. Sure, Edward threw a pan, but I'm guessing you've done the same at some point in your life, too. If she was too ill to stay then she was too ill to come back to worry about her chicken. She got overheated. Drink some water, sit in front of a fan and come back... or excuse yourself from competition. The guilt free water after serving only the judges seemingly was telling. She was doubling down in the vignette to sell the lie to herself. She knows she wasn't in any physical risk by returning. So do you. Bravo would not allow a person to die from heat stroke by returning if there was anything medically wrong. Sarah got soft. It happens. Stop apologizing for her. Imagine being in Ed's shoes for a minute. Ty had immunity and Sarah went for the sympathy, hope somebody else really sucks gambit. Worked for her as it has for others(Jamie) in the past. In the future, I suggest Top Chef eliminate competitors if they miss a competition that could eliminate them. In this case, since a portion was missed, that should weigh more heavily, especially when the cheftestant puts out mediocre fare. Roast not smoked chicken in this case. Great blog as always.

lisa jayasekera
lisa jayasekera

mr. acheson you are RIDUNCULOUS... in the most effervescent sense of the word! well done sir!

Ralpho
Ralpho

Hugh, the ribs require lots of attention to detail, like dry and wet rubbing, tubbing, not flubbing.

vivie
vivie

Keep writing, Hugh. Acerbic, nail-on-the-head nuggets. Delicioso!

Torokwife#2
Torokwife#2

Chef Hugh, please write a book.I'm sure it would be as good as As Anthony Bordain's. Love you and your uni-brow.

Team Love (Hugh)
Team Love (Hugh)

THANK YOU. I would LOVE to watch a TC episode with you! Your blogs continue to be a huge asset to the show. Best line in this one: "mildly abusive camp counselor." As happy as I am that Karma bit Heather in the tush, it would have been fun to watch her out there in the heat. Edward would've looked like snow white.

Poor Bev looked discombobulated in EVERY scene. Malibu is more fun to watch than Bev, but oh, well.

Til next week...

TBurbia
TBurbia

Chef Hugh - Thank you for this blog!!! I love the show - and love your wit just as much (sometimes more). Thank you!

juliaxxxx
juliaxxxx

My top three, Lyndsay, Paul, TayLor...

MaryKu
MaryKu

Thanks! Very funny and articulate.

Rora
Rora

Best blogs on BravoTV!!! LOOOOVE Chef Hugh! Sara is so rude and annoying IMO. Even if you watched her face when Paul won the Austin quickfire challenge. She looked PISSED! I understand where Ed was coming from and he is a REALLY nice guy! He stayed in the heat, so give him some credit ppl!