Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Top Chef Masters - 8.12.09

Right off the bat, Not-Padme is ready to tell them all about their Quickfire. (It's their last one - the finale has no Quickfire). Time for the blindfolded taste test! They have 20 ingredients to identify. The chef with the most gets 5 stars, the next 4, the next 3 1/2, and the last 3.

Michael is up first and floundered on non-Italian ingredients. Hubert seemed to do ok. Rick was bold, but missed a lot from what we saw. Anita blanked on a lot of them, but got a couple of the harder ones (poppodums and dashi).

Hubert got 5/20, Rick got 6/20, Anita got 6/20 as well, and Michael got 7/20 and won the challenge.

For the Elimination Challenge, they have to "hire" staff, made up of prior Top Chef contestants, to help them with a buffet lunch for 200 Hollywood people the next day. They get 2 minutes to interview each chef before making decisions.

Michael was an ass in interviews, and demanded that people tell him is name and how to pronounce the last name. It was childish, in my opinion.

Michael had Brian, CJ, and Fabio.
Rick had Richard, Betty, and ... someone else who I barely remember. Dave?
Anita had Jamie, Dale, and Ilan.
Hubert had Spike, Antonio, and Elia.

Once teams were picked, Rick let people contribute ideas. Anita asked for ideas but didn't really want them. Hubert asked his sous chefs for input, too. Michael didn't have any interest in knowing what his sous chefs though.

They split teams up, $2000 between Restaurant Depot and Whole Foods, and then they have 3 1/2 hours to prep.

Back at the kitchen, there was a spat about fridge space. Michael, of course, got into it with Dale, and Dale certainly didn't like it when he was called "young man." I want Michael to win much less now, after seeing how he acts with people.

The next day, they had 2 1/2 hours prep. And, Not-Padme entered with a twist... the party location is changed, and they have to pack everything up in 30 minutes and move to their new location, where they will have their 2 1/2 hour prep. Chaos ensued. Their stations are outside, which is a blow to the chefs. AND - everyone has to cut one person. Michael dropped Brian, Hubert booted Spike, Rick got rid of Betty, and Anita got rid of Jamie (who was taking too long for prep, in Anita's mind)

In the end, Anita served an Asian Raw Bar with lots of sauces and a couple other things. The raw bar made people nervous.

Michael served a very Italian buffet, with risotto, shrimp, swordfish, and a couple desserts. Gael Green's hat wasn't sure about the texture of the swordfish, calling it like old swordfish.

Hubert served an 18 dish buffet which got very good marks from the judges.

Rick did a Mexican Food Buffet, including Richard Blais' liquid nitrogen avocado ice cream. The judges seemed very pleased with his dishes.

At Critic's Table, Rick said that he loved working with his sous chefs.

Hubert had a super complicated menu and he did that on purpose. They loved it.

Anita's ribs got good marks. The raw bar, not so much.

Michael's shrimp was called unnecessary, and the swordfish had a "curious" texture, which Gael Green's Hat called furry and mealy. How unappealing. He is also unable to delegate anything to his sous chefs.

Rick and Hubert have the highest totals for the night, so they are both safe. That's about right!

Rick's total was 21 1/2 stars. Hubert's killed it with the critics and got 5 stars from all of them, bringing his total to 22 stars, and his charity (Make a Wish) got an extra $10K.

Anita got a total of 17 stars, and Michael got 19 1/2, so Anita is gone. Doesn't change the fact that Michael acted kind of badly with his sous chefs. It was Anita's time to go, though.


theProvidentWoman said...

Thanks for the recap.

Anonymous said...

Ha ha, I just had to laugh. This whole time reading your reviews I thought you keep typing "Gail's Green Hat" and I thought weird, she wears a different hat each week not the same green one. Duh, you are writing Gail Green's hat. My bad ;) Anyway, I'm happy with the 3 finalists, although I agree that Michael acted like an a$$ to his chefs. I hope Hubert wins. And Top Chef Las Vegas starts next week -- woohoo. Since I live here I'm curious to see where they shop/cook. And Project Runway starts soon too I believe. I have to make sure my DVR catches it on the new station...