Team Top Chef

The Oscar winner's presence brings out the best in the remaining chefs.

Jan 18, 20120

That night, the chefs all sit around and discuss their plan of attack for the next day. They all agree that they need to play nice, in fact, my boyfriend Paul says that outright. And they're all pretty much referring to Beverly, who seems to have no idea what they're alluding to. Oh well.

It's serving time! And all the chefs do very, very well. I dont know what it was about this particular challenge that had all of the chefs rise up, but I'm starting to wonder if every episode should feature an Oscar winner. The food would be amazing. (I actually think cooking for Eric Ripert had a lot to do with it too.)

Let's go through each dish, shall we?

Edward started the night off right with a fish dish playing off "good and evil." He started the whole meal off on the right foot.

Lindsay made a stew she holds dear to her and her mentor Michelle Bernstein's hearts. Tom loves it. She moves on. I would've liked to see her step out of her comfort zone, but, hey, you can't argue with good food.

Sarah made another risotto, and although it was met favorably, there were still comments about the risotto itself. She was worried when making it, remembering that Tim Love didn't love the consistency of her risotto earlier in the season, and there seemed to be similar issues this time around. I'm sure risotto is one of the more subjective foods, but it'll be interesting to see if Sarah changes her methods moving foward.

Chris Jones' gadgets were finally put to good use as he made the poison apple for dessert. Chris actually said that every time you make something new, there's a risk it won't work out. That's quite a risk to take during a competition, but fortunately for him, it did work out! Grayson actually loved the idea from the get-go, and it was executed well. Anyone else notice the Chris/Grayson friendship? They're so supportive of each other, it's adorable. 

25 comments
Guamchef
Guamchef

I'm curious to see a reunion show of the entire TC cast. I hope the 3 meanies (Lindsay, Sara & Heather) realize how foolish they have looked all season. How embarrassing & unprofessional. I hope future investors and partners be cautious of their 2-faced attitudes. karma!

Suraj
Suraj

Since I'm a raeteivlly new reader, I thoroughly enjoyed and appreciated the roll call. I too am a mommy/cook and although I don't have quite the culinary background as you, my heart is still in the kitchen. I'd love some tips on how to stay focused in the kitchen while your children are pulling at your pant legs!

Linda
Linda

Loved watching Beverly redeem herself. This challenge was one of my favorites

Linda-a-go-go
Linda-a-go-go

I don't know how I feel about this challenge. The food was interesting, but I found it very annoying the way the other judges laughed so raucously at Charlize Theron's unfunny, and somewhat arrogant jokes. This whole Beverly deal is really looking like made for TV drama now. I can only assume she'll be brought back for a showdown against Sarah &/or Lindsay. And let's face it, none of the 3 deserve to win Top Chef. Once again, it will probably be a male since the women have to act like divas in the kitchen (sans Grayson, whom I now see as the only female contender). This season is becoming a bore!

2BrokenThumbs
2BrokenThumbs

Beverly is not a saint. She is cold and calculating. She does what she wants regardless of the other chefs. Her difference is that she does not want to dominate the other chefs. Lindsay and Sarah want to dominate the other chefs. You can see the cliques and alliances forming. Heather, Sarah, Lindsay, and Ty for instance. It's a gang mentality and Beverly was an innocent bystander. Paul, Ed, and Grayson also are individualistic but did not need to form a clique to conspire against the other chefs. Nyesha was a truly talented chef who had a very diversified food pallete (French, Latin, Mediterranean, American). Beverly was mostly Asian but Sarah (Italian - sausage or risotto variations), Lindsay (faux Greek and Southern fusion), Heather ( Rustic chain restaurant style), were just as limited. I would have hoped that Nyesha made it to the finals to face Paul and Grayson. Beverly may have won just to setup a showdown with Sarah and Lindsay. I hope that happens soon.

BevFan
BevFan

Are any of you Top Chef fans also gamers? I kept thinking while watching this season that we need Top Chef Achievement pop-ups like you get on Xbox 360 games (trophies for PS3 users). Here were some achievements that chefs should get: I'm Not a Pastry Chef: Be eliminated by foolishly making a dessert when not required. It's My Way or the Highway: Be eliminated by leading your team to defeat. Take One for the Team: Be eliminated during Restaurant Wars by working the front of the house and leaving your dish up to someone else (it's a competition, idiot!). That's Why It's Call Immunity: Have the judges tell you "if didn't have immunity, you'd be going home". That's Why We Have Rules: Have a judge tell you "if you didn't break the rules, you would have won". Pull a Tiffany: Try to tell the judges your food wasn't the problem, it was the palate of the diners. Thrown Over the Bus: Repeatedly mangle a common expression much to the delight of Top Chef producers. Pull a Stefan: Tell everyone how superior you are and say "of course I won" after every challenge and then choke during the finale. I Forgot I Was On a TV Show: Go on a relaxing outing with Padme (and the tv crew) and be surprised when it turns out to be a Quickfire. Pull a Marcel: Be the most arrogant person who thinks they know everything and then lose in the final to a guy who knows how to use salt, pepper, and saffron. Have You Seen the Show?: Be shocked when another chef gives you bad advice and you follow it to your own demise. We Need an Arc: Come in the bottom of the Quickfire, have Tom doubt your dish, have a teary-eyed confessional, have a disastrous prep, change your dish at the last minute, and win the Elimination Challenge. Can anybody think of any others?

Liz S
Liz S

I really think Grayson should have won this one. Her dish was so creative and abstract and the judges loved it. Nothing against Paul, but Grayson's was far more creative than his. It was a really tough challenge because all of these dishes were amazing; Chris's poison apple really embodied the whole Snow White and Evil Queen thing. He was the only one who did a dessert! Why are all the chefs afraid of doing desserts?! Embrace your sweet side people! It was a sad day to see Beverly go; she really did keep her head held high and proved that she is a great chef. She deserved that win on the last challenge. She didn't sell anybody out or belittle them. Way to be honorable Beverly! Can't wait until next week's episode!

j-son
j-son

All dishes were excellent, but I think Grayson's black claw is one of the most visually stunning dishes I've ever seen in my life. Really fascinating. She and Paul have been my favorites all season and I just love both their personalities and attitudes and incredible talent.

Other than WAY too much airtime devoted to BBQ, which I totally understand due to the locale, and cooking for masses of people, which I certainly never equate with haute cuisine, I've enjoyed this cast and season as much or more as any. Great job.

michele.loves.andy
michele.loves.andy

I loved watching Beverly having redemption in LCK against the popular girl, Nyesha! While there is a scent of victim on Bev, she is still intriguing, both bullied and infuriatingly self-confident, willing the karma chips to fall where they may, soaking up all the negativity and using it as rocket fuel to propel her past other people and their mediocrity.

She is a shlemiel to their shlmozzle, and i am so totally praying for her to win! She is a fascinating paradox and a real artist.

Go Beverly! It would be awesome to see her win, when you think of how the others constantly dismiss her, "Bandar and how she has never been mean, ugly, or unprofessional, yet, she is considered by some worthy of hate. How can you hate this quirky little jewel.

Andy McGill
Andy McGill

Good episode because the food was very visually interesting.

Bad episode because the product placement was way over the top.

florencegal
florencegal

I'm not much for conspiracy theories, but I think andy boy might be onto something in his comment above. beverly isn't just annoying, she is not a team player, and she plays it up with the water works all the time. sure, heather was mean, a real bully, and i didn't like her either, but beverly didn't deserve to make it as far as she did, and she didn't deserve the win on ltk based on what i saw. she made a mess of the station, a mess of the fish, and didn't prepare nearly as well as nyesha, who then got not the benefit of her own skill, planning, and effort, but beverly's mess. nice one, tc. i don't yell at the tv much, but when she was sent home, i shouted for joy. will do so again when the next to pack their knives wipes the floor with her in ltc.

Jill from SR
Jill from SR

I don't understand why anyone would think that Paul was alluding to Beverly when he said to play nice. I thought that was clearly intended for the mean girls, Sara and Lyndsey. Beverly has been playing nice, so nice that many of us wish she'd get a little mean girl in her. I agree completely with Iron Lady--how on earth could anyone see the results of the Last Chance Kitchen as a fix? This could have easily gone out of the other way. Moreover, Beverly had no idea they were going to be forced to switch stations after collecting what she needed Anyone who watched that footage should have no doubt about Beverly's cooking prowess. Once again, Beverly proved she deserves to be here.

Johnny D
Johnny D

Not real thrilled with her crying all the time, but Bev is pretty strong. Both chef's had the same challenge and she cooked a little bit better. I think Nyesha spent more time grumbling and it took it off her game. Has anyone noticed how any time any other chef wins or get a compliment Sara and Lindsey have the meanest look on their face. Sara especially. Those two can't stand for anyone else to do anything well. I know it's a competetion but you can still be decent human beings. I wonder if they act like that in their real jobs. Wouldn't work for me long. I really have enjoyed TC from the first year but each year it get more about drama then about cooking. This group would get killed by chefs from earlier season-not nearly as talented. Just my opinion.

Nursecarolyn
Nursecarolyn

Ohhh, la la! Eric Ripert! The guy gives me goose bumps! What a treat to see him on the show again! And Ms Charlise was a great guest!! I'm throwing my vote in for Paul. And I love Toms blog, up to date and always pertinent to the food.

Skinny Cook
Skinny Cook

My wife and I had the pleasure of meeting Beverly at a large Bon Appetit event this past September. She came off FAR more personable than many, in fact, the majority of great chefs at the event. In fact, because all her assistance were in thier finest chef whites, and she was clad in jeans and a knit hat, I didn't even realize she was the chef responsibe for the food at that station.

Was only after about 10 or 15 minutes of chatting that it came out she was the person in charge, and still, she left explaining and serving her dish to her assistants while she spoke with us.

I think she is exactly as she presents herself, and wears her emotions on her sleeve. Percieved as a weekness by some, but I think it makes her more likeable, if a bit quirky. At this point, ALL the remaining chefs are pretty darn good.

We're rooting for her every week!

Really!
Really!

I too was glad to see Beverly go. While I didn't enjoy watching Heather's over the top aggressiveness towards Beverly, every chef this season has become completely exasperated with Beverly at one time or another. Beverly can be a very nice, well meaning person yet also be one of those people that manage to sooner or later bug the heck out of everyone around them. I agree with the earlier writer who said that the LSK with Beverly and Neyesha was absolutely UNFAIR to Neyesha. Half the battle of the Top Chef cooks is conceptualizing a dish so for Neyesha to have to turn her ingredients over to Beverly (who's been rather a one trick pony in the competition - creativity not being her strength) turned the whole contest between Neyesha and Beverly into a big fat joke. HOW ABOUT A LOT FEWER TWISTS AND GROUP CONTESTS ON TOP CHEF AND MORE CHALLENGES THAT FAIRLY TEST THE CHEFS ABILITIES. Neyesha was sent home originally for under cooked elk which she had nothing to do with and then she was out and out cheated of her opportunity to stay in the contest at LCK.

Otterberry
Otterberry

First off, Ms. Blogger ... Paul is MY guy and without question the hottest cheftestant since the ursophile's dreamboat Kevin Gillespie in Season 6 (which remains by far the best season of the show aside from the All Stars).

What a wrenching episode. Beverly missing immunity ... then losing to Sarah's inferior dish ... then rocking it again in the last chance kitchen. I am not looking forward to future last chance kitchens with the peanut galley of losers scowling at Beverly. I almost feel that the editing is dropping something -- can she really be inspiring such HATRED among the other women simply because she's not a Type A?

Unfortunately, and I don't like to be cynical, it is looking like an elaborate producer's setup: Beverly returning to the competition and the look of utter horror on the faces of any of the remaining bitchtestants when she does!

I wish Big Bully Heather, Constant Complainer Sarah, and Cold Calculating Lindsay weren't so easy to dislike. They sorta turn my stomach, which makes it hard to focus on the food. They all seem to have solid skills, if not as intuitive and consistent as Beverly. I wonder where Sarah and Lindsay's negativity will be focused with Beverly out of the kitchen.

ViewerNYGal
ViewerNYGal

Oh please, this is so Gilly. Yes, Bev may be a good chef but she is evil. I have to edit myself because it makes for interesting TV but yes, I am yelling at my computer as loud as I yell for my fav NFL team on TV or in the stadium. Nice to have chef Ripert back and the elimination challange was the most creative yet.

WIncredulous
WIncredulous

@andy boy: I saw Bev's bin WAY more full of ingredients and stuff than Nyesha's was...how does that figure into your "conspiracy theory?" Bev won, Nyesha was way overconfident and arrogant and lost. End of story. Yay, Bev. Bye, bye Nyesha....see ya and go back to your "Chef Hunter" restaurant.

ThomasJackson
ThomasJackson

No real comments on this episode.

But I feel like Paul is going to "pull a Richard Blais" and lose in the finale. Of course Richard lost to a chef who had just as many wins as he; no one looks like they are even close to Paul. I guess Lindsay is close, but I don't really see anything special with her dishes.

Iron woman
Iron woman

Beverly naysayers have conveniently forgotten that she is the ONLY chef to have beaten Nyesha head to head now twice -- in the chili mole elimination and now the LCK. Beverly's win was well deserved. She didn't win LCK bc of Nyesha's ingredients, she won because she out cooked Nyesha again. If Nyesha was as great as everyone claims, she should have won even with Bev's ingredients (which by the way, I'm not sure how pinapple is a traditional "asian" ingrediant as Nyesha derisevly implied to Tom). Beverly had the same disadvantage as Nyesha and Nyesha's ingredients werent some holy grail -- this is TC, you always have to be prepared for a twist and you certainly have to work what you got. Nyesha whined while Bev sucked it up and made the best out of a less than ideal situatuon. Everyone underestimates Beverly and I'm tired of the personal attacks against her and that she only cooks "Asian" food -- she won LCK with a Mediterranean flavor profile -- don't repeat contestant's biased remarks about a person's style of cooking unless you can back them up with facts. And the facts of what Bev cooked on the show demonstate a lager range than biaed haters have concluded. Those against Bev find any reason to nitpick her because they personally don't like her. Bev has flaws no doubt, but next to the bus throwers, the backstabbers and bullies, I don't see Beverly's zen spaciness as anywhere near as bad as the others who by contrast are truly mean spirited. Bev's "sin" simply is that she is different, she's not a "cool kid" and for that she has been unfairly stomped on. Nevertheless, what impresses me the most is despite the negativity around her, when no one was supporting her, when ppl were throwing her under the bus simply because they dont understand her, she withstood all that pressure and cooked great food. She is one of the only Chefs this season with integrity -- she never said a mean word about anyone and I don't believe the editors' cut of her being selfish because those words came out of the mouths of the likes of Heather, Sarah and Lindsey who have no credibility based on their conduct and character. Good job Bev, I'm rooting for you all the way. You don't have to carry a big stick to make your point - keep your quiet strength, stay emotional and passionate, stay true to yourself as you have been, continue rising above people's attempts to bring you down, keep defying expectations and destroying people's misconceptions about you. You rock.

Noob Chef
Noob Chef

Loved the concept of this episode! I already posted my five cents over at Tom's blog, but I did want to add here that thank you for bringing Charlize in for this challenge. As much as I've enjoyed the past Hollywood guest stars, I'm so so glad Charlize is an open and adventurous eater. It's disappointing when you have a star on the show who has like 10 million dietary restrictions. Yes, it can be more of a challenge for the chefs that way, but definitely boring to watch. Lamb hearts?! Who knew...

andy boy
andy boy

First let me say that I really dislike Beverly and I am glad she got eliminated. I know she can cook well, but something about that girl really bugs me. In earlier episodes when Heather was mean to Beverly I didn't like it or Heather's seemingly bullying tactics. I had a feeling Heather would get sent home before Beverly. Making it a redemption deal. However, since then, Beverly has rubbed me the wrong way. Her crying doesn't help thats for sure. It seems she rubs everyone the wrong way. Now that she won last chance kitchen. With a bogus decision over Nyesha. I have a theory. The producers want Beverly to get back in, and obviously if she gets back in the competition, I will be proved right. Proof so far. All through this season, they are laying the groundwork for poor little Beverly. No one likes her, she's annoying, odd, always feeling slighted. First she gets redemption against bullying Heather. Now she beats a more confident, and better prepared Nyesha. Tom rigged it for Beverly by allowing her to get Nyesha pantry findings. Which were abundent. Why in a one on one competition must there be a twist. Especially when Nyesha was on a roll. Beating 5 cheftestants in a row, and deservingly so. Also when Beverly entered the last chance kitchen, Nyesha confidently said Beverly would be no competition. Very suspect. Then Tom asked all the other beaten chefs if Beverly will win, no one said a word. Then everyone said Nyesha would win. It looked like a setup to me. Poor little totured girl Beverly against all the other chefs. That my friend is in the cards this season. Beverly is getting back in the competition in a few weeks. She might even win it all. That would really suck. I really dislike Beverly.

idlewild
idlewild

anyone who has ever thought Beverly is a underdog is delusional, just look at the note she posted the first night, she looks at you as if she's listening, gamemanship, she's not, totally self-centered (doesn't know how to spell team). and she's knows how to cook fish perfectly under any circumstance, she deliberately sabotage Lindsay in restaurant wars. Paul had to set up kitchen rules WHO FOR.. yea the evil one is gone unfortunately not vanquished, damn Neyesha & the olives

SadViewer
SadViewer

Total bs that Beverly went home...I keep getting disgusted seeing how every season heartless self centered chefs keep moving on when they clearly should be sent home. Either Sarah or Grayson should have gone home...their attitude towards their chef competitor was just beyond sad and truly makes me wants to stop watching the show. Beverly you represented yourself well and I'm proud you didn't put yourself at the same level as those other jealous rude girls.