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Chris Hennes

Top Chef: Season 6 – Las Vegas

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Allright, I get the tatoos...well, maybe. Perhaps many of these people have ancestors who were African tribesmen.

The piercing - well, I suppose if you're trying to channel some of the meat you're going to be cooking, why not?

But, why can't the producers of this show tell the chefs that they need to stop touching their faces and hair so much? If I was one of the judges, and I saw a chef picking at his/her face, or pulling at his/her hair, they would immediately be voted off the island. Why? Because it's disgusting and you're dealing with food. Bad enough you're sucking on your piercing.

And what? No one on clam girl's crew could tell her how to shuck a damn clam?


Mitch Weinstein aka "weinoo"

mweinstein@eGstaff.org

Tasty Travails - My Blog

My eGullet FoodBog - A Tale of Two Boroughs

Was it you baby...or just a Brilliant Disguise?

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It was off-camera -- but who asked Jennifer if she were a pastry chef??? That was just wrong (unless, of course, it was out of context).

We saw a lot of Kevin this episode -- I was worried that the editors were trying to telegraph something.

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I liked that the quickfire win came with a substantial prize: they seem to be trying to get the contestants to play to win, even this early in the contest, rather than last year's perpetual try-not-to-lose lameness.


Chris Hennes
Director of Operations
chennes@egullet.org

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I liked that the quickfire win came with a substantial prize: they seem to be trying to get the contestants to play to win, even this early in the contest, rather than last year's perpetual try-not-to-lose lameness.

Although, I don't think the elimination winner got anything?

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Interesting first episode and a mostly promising bunch.

Looking forward to how this season unfolds.


Jon

--formerly known as 6ppc--

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It was off-camera -- but who asked Jennifer if she were a pastry chef???  That was just wrong (unless, of course, it was out of context).

We saw a lot of Kevin this episode -- I was worried that the editors were trying to telegraph something.

It was the guy with the short black hair who was putting everyone down. He did make it to the winners foursome though.

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It was off-camera -- but who asked Jennifer if she were a pastry chef???  That was just wrong (unless, of course, it was out of context).

We saw a lot of Kevin this episode -- I was worried that the editors were trying to telegraph something.

It was the guy with the short black hair who was putting everyone down. He did make it to the winners foursome though.

Michael Isabella. He also said something about, "one less old lady to worry about" when the one contestant chose to keep her immunity. And during the quickfire he made a comment about how there's no way a girl could keep up with him.

Gail commented about his asshattery on her blog

Side note: I want to reiterate that as judges we do not see any of the interviews, kitchen antics, or behind-the-scenes footage of the chefs in action while we are shooting the show. Our producers are quite strict about this to deter us from developing any opinions about or relationships with the cheftestants other than through the food we are served, and rightfully so. With that in mind, I was shocked and disappointed when I recently viewed this first episode and heard Mike Isabella’s sexist commentary. Hot-tempered and foulmouthed indeed. He may have cooked us a delicious dish, but his attitude left a bad taste in my mouth. For better or worse, my feelings about each chef’s personality will stay out of the kitchen and away from the Judges' Table. But would I have judged him differently had I seen this side of him in advance? I guess we will never know …."

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It was off-camera -- but who asked Jennifer if she were a pastry chef???  That was just wrong (unless, of course, it was out of context).

We saw a lot of Kevin this episode -- I was worried that the editors were trying to telegraph something.

It was the guy with the short black hair who was putting everyone down. He did make it to the winners foursome though.

Michael Isabella. He also said something about, "one less old lady to worry about" when the one contestant chose to keep her immunity. And during the quickfire he made a comment about how there's no way a girl could keep up with him.

Gail commented about his asshattery on her blog

Side note: I want to reiterate that as judges we do not see any of the interviews, kitchen antics, or behind-the-scenes footage of the chefs in action while we are shooting the show. Our producers are quite strict about this to deter us from developing any opinions about or relationships with the cheftestants other than through the food we are served, and rightfully so. With that in mind, I was shocked and disappointed when I recently viewed this first episode and heard Mike Isabella’s sexist commentary. Hot-tempered and foulmouthed indeed. He may have cooked us a delicious dish, but his attitude left a bad taste in my mouth. For better or worse, my feelings about each chef’s personality will stay out of the kitchen and away from the Judges' Table. But would I have judged him differently had I seen this side of him in advance? I guess we will never know …."

'Asshattery', love it!

How do those sexist attitudes survive in this day and age? He should meet my daughter, she's a commis chef and she would eat him for breakfast, probably having sat on him and squashed him flat first. The Sous chef she works immediately under took the p*ss out of her when she started her job, she chucked a cabbage at him and shut him in the cold store! And she's NOT some huge, valkyrie type bruiser. They are good friends now....

Top Chef seems to have really upped the game this time, Michelin winners, James Beard nominees...I wonder if they are trying to put more distance between themselves and Hell's Kitchen?

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I wonder if they are trying to put more distance between themselves and Hell's Kitchen?

Maybe they are trying to put more distance between Season 6 and Season 5...

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I really didn't like Michael Isabella - sexist and sneering.

Then again, watching Top Chef masters, I wasn't exactly a fan of Michael Chiarello ('What's my name???')

I think the right person went home - if not for the food, then for her attitude - it's always a mistake on these kinds of shows to insist you're right, no matter what.

Wolfgang Puck was the best part of this episode. I think Jen and Kevin look like the best chefs, so far. I'm also interested to see what happens in terms of the sibling rivalry - the producers must've been delighted when they realised they had that plot line going!


Edited by gingerbeer (log)

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Did anyone else notice the Tom C. diet coke ad that aired during the show? A real dig at Alinea IMHO. Weird.

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Ugh, the discussion of that ad has been discussed to death.  It was not a dig at Alinea.

Where was it discussed? I was not trying to stir things up but I am curious what people thought of the ad.

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Ugh, the discussion of that ad has been discussed to death.  It was not a dig at Alinea.

Where was it discussed? I was not trying to stir things up but I am curious what people thought of the ad.

OK - so apparently I slept through the Academy Awards this year (just googled the diet coke/Alinea thing). Still . . . someone associated with that ad took a dig at Alinea. The shrimp nest/squid thing . . . come on.

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I thought the first show demonstrated a lot, a lot, of talent--much more than in past seasons. And if you didn't already guess my not so subtle hints in earlier posts about who would be a judge this year, you saw a clip of him during the opening scenes--Robuchon. Yes, these lucky Cheftestants will have the opportunity to face Chef Robuchon who will pass judgement on their ability. I don't know what the specific challenge is, but it will more than likely have a French influence. All I can say is I'm glad I don't have to present my food to Robuchon!

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I agree. There seem to be no real lightweights among the group.

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I agree. There seem to be no real lightweights among the group.

I don't know. Maybe none of this group would seem particularly weak in some of the past seasons but, in comparison to those they're competing against this season, there are a few that are going to have to step it up quite a bit to be around for long. Leaving the shrimp and scallops in the hot pan on the burner while searching the entire kitchen/pantry for a bottle of wine and deep frying a steak both had me thinking what the f@#%. I guess it wouldn't be fair to equate seitan rellenos to being a lightweight but it didn't seem like a good plan for the first "this is me" thing to throw at the judges even before I got to see their reaction. There are many much better options for vegetarian rellenos (in my non-vegetarian opinion anyway). In a competition, bad decision making is a weakness... apparently an important weakness to not have because I thought over-cooked seafood was going to be the one to go.


It's kinda like wrestling a gorilla... you don't stop when you're tired, you stop when the gorilla is tired.

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The lightweights that I had in mind were the early eliminations from the previous TC. Like the one still in cooking school and his equally green friend.

Some of these guys still seem inexperienced, but not to that extreme.

The deep fried steak was indeed a WTF moment. Is chicharron Spanish for charcoal?

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Yeah, that deep-fried steak, served to Chef Puck at CUT no less, was really awful. My guess is that the rib it was cut from was prime grade, probably aged in the coolers at CUT. The poor dufe didn't seem to have a clue that he was crucifying a beautiful piece of meat. I thought the judges went easy on him.

If he sticks around for judgement in front of Robuchon, he better show a higher level of skill in treating the ingredients.

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Or to put it in Tom C. terms: "Honor thy protein"...


Those who do not remember the pasta are doomed to reheat it.

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LOL

I'm finding that whole honoring of the protein bit tiresome. I prefer to think of it as "not screwing up a good piece of meat"

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Looks like an interesting group, but this is the second time in the series that people have actually bled onto the food while in a competition. I'm sorry but that is wrong. If the food couldn't be used due to their competence, then the bloody food should not count as a successful completion of the project. :angry:

Rhonda

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Looks like an interesting group, but this is the second time in the series that people have actually bled onto the food while in a competition.  I'm sorry but that is wrong.  If the food couldn't be used due to their competence, then the bloody food should not count as a successful completion of the project. :angry:

Rhonda

I don't think the cheftestant in question actually bled into the food. Things like this happen, she/he (Can't remember at the moment) took care of it and moved on. Just like you would if you were on the line (it's happened to me). Hell I did it with people watching (we have/had a 16 place table in the kitchen) me. I felt it as soon as I did it, removed myself from the line - bandaged it up, put a glove on and returned to what I was doing. And didn't so much as have a drop of blood anywhere on the line or in food for that matter.


Edited by TimmDavis (log)

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If you are in Atlanta, and want to try that deep-fried steak...

Hector Santiago and Top Chef: cigars, women and fried steak

If you’d like to judge for yourself, head over to Pura Vida tonight, where the special is … Top Chef promo music here, please … deep-fried steak in a smoky brine for $11. Owner (and Hector’s lovely wife) Leslie Santiago tells me the plan is to offer a special of whatever Hector cooks on Top Chef each week from Thursday through Monday nights.

At least he has had more time to tinker with it...

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