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Our perceptions of the countries should have nothing to do with a judgement on the refinement of their native food.  And I would note that Mexico is far more developed and cultured than the average American appreciates.

There is always discomfort when someone makes a judgement of quality.  It is by its nature subjective and doesn't have to be fair. 

BTW Both Greece and Mexico are part of the West....

Not that I am comparing Greek or Mexican food to caveman cuisine...but as an aid to thinking about  this issue....would it be "western -centric" or unfair in some way to say that roast tyranosaurus is a primitive dish?  I think not. Similarly, classic Philadelphian cuisine( cheesesteak, hoagie, scrapple, soft pretzel), while delicious, just ain't refined.  Doesn't make it bad. So then if this kind of judgement is possible, I think that one may legitimately apply it to cuisines.

my use of the word "west" should be more specified as "european based".

also, if we were talking about specific dishes - scapple, etc - i'd agree, but we're generalizing a whole freaking country!

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At the risk of inflaming the board, I have to agree that I cannot see 'Mexican cuisine' and 'fine dining' in the same sentence.  Same goes for Greek. (Steingarten agrees)

I've eaten widely and well over the years and I've never had classic Greek or Mexican dishes that were not pretty crude.

Note  that I say "classic"...meaning the traditional dishes of that country.  While I have had Mexican-influenced meals that were in the fine  dining category, the classic dishes miss widely.  Perhaps I've eaten in the wrong restaurants.

Could you explain what you mean by refined and which traditional dishes you found crude? Mexico is a large country with distinct culinary regions.

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Being a, "Middle American foodie," for lack of a better term, I was deeply offended by the comments that I'm not supposed to know and appreciate what good food is. That made me question their ability. "Your palate is elevated, these dopes are too stupid to get it." Pardon me?

Also, scary Erik going off on Baylis. Pardon me? I'm a big fan of Rick Baylis and I was pissy about that crack. Actually, pretty much everything out of Erik's mouth, after that point, was discounted.

As for product placement, can you say, "Mueller's?

Blog.liedel.org

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At the risk of inflaming the board, I have to agree that I cannot see 'Mexican cuisine' and 'fine dining' in the same sentence.  Same goes for Greek. (Steingarten agrees)

I've eaten widely and well over the years and I've never had classic Greek or Mexican dishes that were not pretty crude.

Note  that I say "classic"...meaning the traditional dishes of that country.  While I have had Mexican-influenced meals that were in the fine  dining category, the classic dishes miss widely.  Perhaps I've eaten in the wrong restaurants.

Could you explain what you mean by refined and which traditional dishes you found crude? Mexico is a large country with distinct culinary regions.

I have eaten nothing Mexican from any region that took much skill to cook and wasn't very unsophisticated in flavor and execution.

Having said that I won't make any attempt to defend it, define it or explain it further. That's my impression. Your experience and opinion may differ... which is fine too. :-)

Edited by gfweb (log)
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A few more glasses of wine tonight and I might just comment on Padma’s culinary revelation at the judges table for the Elimination Challenge when she proclaimed that “I love the wonton…The wonton is genius!”

Well--I did have a few more glasses of wine after 8:03p.m. on March 28, but the wine was more interesting than commenting on Padma's declaration about Stephanie's wonton.

I don't really have a problem awarding a fruit cobbler with streusel topping and a fried wonton garnish as the winner of the Elimination Challenge. I think it could be the perfect, winning dish for a summer block party if it was prepared properly using seasonal fruits. I liked the idea that Stephanie enhanced the fruit flavors with some basil and lime.

I've always qualified my opinions about the dishes on Top Chef by noting that I'm only offering an opinion based on what I see through the television. I can't back up my opinions with the ultimate test-the taste test. But in this case, I think what I saw on television is more than enough to shout back to Padma that deep-frying wonton wrappers cut in cute shapes and sprinkling them with cinnamon-sugar is not in fact "genius." Tasty, sure. Tasty to the point of being in "love" with the wonton, maybe. But just not "genius" in terms of the concept.

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I don't know anything about the cheftestants, but when I saw two(?) of them billed in the first episode as "chef/consultant," I figured that it was a euphemism for "unemployed."

Am I wrong?

Nope...

However I should point out that Richard is a honest to goodness consultant as well as experienced Chef. His style of food is not something that you just decide to try one day. Plenty of specialized equipment and techniques to learn.

ed.

Edited by The Cynical Chef (log)

John Malik

Chef/Owner

33 Liberty Restaurant

Greenville, SC

www.33liberty.com

Customer at the carving station: "Pardon me but is that roast beef rare?"

Apprentice Cook Malik: "No sir! There's plenty more in the kitchen!"

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There's obviously fine dining in Mexico. I can't believe there's even a need to argue this. Here's one example, Pujol in Mexico City: http://www.pujol.com.mx/english.html

I refrained from getting too off-topic, but now I have to post Las Mananitas, in Cuernavaca (45 minutes from Mexico City), named one of the top 25 restaurants on some list...I haven't been there in 8 years, so I can't recall what I had, but I did enjoy it.

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Jeez, can't imagine anything that might make someone twitchy, sniffley, and bug eyed. :rolleyes:

“Don't kid yourself, Jimmy. If a cow ever got the chance, he'd eat you and everyone you care about!”
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Jeez, can't imagine anything that might make someone twitchy, sniffley, and bug eyed. :rolleyes:

Man, he's just a twisted knot of ganglia, that one. I'm going with the previously suggested hypothesis - amphetamine psychosis!

(Still laughing over Colicchio's face when Andrew told him, "it's MY house." Oh, dear God.) :laugh:

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I read the blog Bayless put on the Top Chef site. Interesting comment about Ryan. Sort of, he worked in one of my places, but was a bit of a jerk, thing. That is badly paraphrased.

It's hard to tell what Padma thought was genius about the wonton. It might have been genius for the circumstances, rather than genius food.

Blog.liedel.org

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I read the blog Bayless put on the Top Chef site. Interesting comment about Ryan. Sort of, he worked in one of my places, but was a bit of a jerk, thing. That is badly paraphrased.

I chose not to know anything about the chefs beforehand because I wanted to go in with a completely clean slate, but Ryan had worked in our kitchen at one time and I sort of recognized him, but when he was presenting his dish to me in the Quickfire Challenge he brought up the fact that he’d worked in our kitchen for a day or two, and he did it in a total brown-nosey way, and I was so taken aback because then I remembered him and I remembered that I didn’t really care for him.

Ouch!

That's page 7 of Bayless's blog. (They break them down into some many little pages that's they're a little tedious to read.)

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Ouch!

That's page 7 of Bayless's blog. (They break them down into some many little pages that's they're a little tedious to read.)

That drives me bananas. Gotta promote the beer, but honestly, does it really need to be that way?

Blog.liedel.org

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I just saw on rerun Erik's comments for the first time. Whoa. Where does the ego come from, especially on camera? It wasn't even an elimination. Deal with it. It was the parameters of the challenge.

Glad he's gone.

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Erik is still spewing bad breath about tacos and Chef Bayless-even after his Top Chef 15 minutes of fame. Check out the March 27 Q and A with Erik over on Grub Street. He has some rude things to say about Chef Bayless and the taco fiasco.

And apparently his culinary career is really taking off. He mentions on the post that "My guys are talking to Vince Neil from Mötley Crüe." Hmm. Wonder how that plays into Erik's cooking career....

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So, we made corn dogs a few nights ago (out of "staff meals from chanterelle")

yummy as always (can't go wrong with a freshly made corndog with good ingredients). BUT a few hours later I walked by and, having left one out, figured "hmm, i'm still hungry". Took one bite of a soggy corn dog and tossed the rest out.

I can see why he got the boot, my poor corn dog was miles away from where it had started.

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Man, I am so glad that guy was eliminated. I thought he should have gone when he proudly displayed how he had no idea in the entire world what a souffle was.

His comments to or about Rick Bayless and Mexican cuisine were just beyond moronic. What an ignoramus.

Priscilla

Writer, cook, & c. ● #TacoFriday observant ●  Twitter    Instagram

 

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Erik is still spewing bad breath about tacos and Chef Bayless-even after his Top Chef 15 minutes of fame.  Check out the March 27 Q and A with Erik over on Grub Street.  He has some rude things to say about Chef Bayless and the taco fiasco.

Whoa. I haven't even gotten to Erik's blurb yet, but instead reading with turned stomach the piece on Kobe Club. Maybe I need to get over it -- after all, who knows when some emperor will offer me $1 billion for the scrappledog -- but places like this and $700 sips of congac, et al, make me angrily nauseous. I'm glad some dude can pick up a $5,000 tip from Rush fucking Limbaugh, but I can't help wish anyone who pays that kind of money for food to choke on it in a back alley.

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Nah, Rush doesn't believe in tipping. That's Socialism!

As for Padma...she can tell me that VanKamps Pork and Beans is genius and I'll believe her. I can't question anyone that hot...

As for Andrew, he and his coke habit need to go.

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