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David Ross

Top Chef: Seattle

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@annabelle, thanks for the clarification. No problems. :smile:

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You're welcome, huiray. It's easy to get crossed up when we can't see each other.

Re, tearing up the salmon with tongs; I was waiting for Tom to go into his patented rant about "respecting the protein" and "honoring the ingredients". I hate it when he does that. Tom, my friend, they are groceries not sacred artifacts.

During the early days of the 18th century lobster was fed to hogs since it was considered a trash food. They were very plentiful and so scorned. (Fisherman today still refer to them as bugs.) My husband had a bad experience with Asian lobster at a banquet when he was stationed in Vietnam and refuses to eat lobster in Asian restaurants to this day.

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My regular Saturday routine of wathcing reruns of recent episodes brings to mind a though about the salmon/soudough challenge. Sourdough and beer have some of the same flavor profiles-tangy, sour, salt and yeasty. Would there have been an opportunity to somehow work the sourdough starter into something with an Alaskan ale that would have accented the salmon?

I can't imagine that a "Top Chef" would just view fresh wild salmon as a pedestrian ingredient, but then again I've lived in the Northwest for 55 years so I probably have a better understanding of the reverance we have for salmon.

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My regular Saturday routine of wathcing reruns of recent episodes brings to mind a though about the salmon/soudough challenge. Sourdough and beer have some of the same flavor profiles-tangy, sour, salt and yeasty. Would there have been an opportunity to somehow work the sourdough starter into something with an Alaskan ale that would have accented the salmon?

I can't imagine that a "Top Chef" would just view fresh wild salmon as a pedestrian ingredient, but then again I've lived in the Northwest for 55 years so I probably have a better understanding of the reverance we have for salmon.

Down here, salmon isn't revered at all unless its a nice nova. A lot of chefs see it as banquet food and diners are used to overcooked broiled farm salmon. I can't eat that stuff.

But gently poached in a mirepoix is a different story indeed.

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Quite frankly I've been a little bit disappointed with this season. None of the chefs, in my opinion, stand out in any way like what we've seen with for example the Voltaggio brothers, Kevin (same season) or Richard Blais.

They're all kinda inconsistent and just... meh.

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I find them forgetable. On rewatching the rerun of last week's episode, I thought to myself "I can't even remember what they made."

That's bad. Bad for the viewer. Bad for the franchise.

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Survival on the show requires making good enough dishes and no screw-ups. To avoid screw-ups a chef should only cook what he knows well; which in these young guys may be limited to a cuisine or two.

But if they do that, the judges carp that its the same style of cooking and encourage them to branch-out. Then they screw-up.

Producers need to find more experienced chefs. But older = less telegenic. And older = less willing to risk being on the show.

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True. Top Chef Masters was a great example of that. Jonathon Waxman got sick of the whole thing around the time the crew made him a birthday cake.

I believe he said "F*ck it. I'm going to cook what I like. I don't care what the challenge is about."

And he did. And he got told to PYKAG.

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And didn't you just want to cry when you watched poor Sheldon take tongs to that salmon and chuck it into those serving bowls? Ouch.

Now *that* was pretty jarring, yes - but perhaps (again) he didn't have these rarefied notions about salmon - "it's just a food ingredient", just like if he was ripping off pulled pork from a hunk of suitably cooked pork to serve...

It didn't bother me that he was serving the salmon with tongs as long as it looked and tasted good

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But if they do that, the judges carp that its the same style of cooking and encourage them to branch-out. Then they screw-up.

And then Tom sits there and tells them that they should cook what they know, and by what they know, he means whatever he thinks their grandmother cooked as opposed to whatever they've been doing for their careers.

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See, that's a foolish notion of Tom's. Not everyone had access to a great cook of a grandmother/mother/auntie.

He should treat the chefs as individuals and not stereotype them by their ethnicity. And it's probably just me, but I am sick to death of hearing about the chefs sexual preferences since I doubt this has little if anything to do with their abilities in the kitchen.

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See, that's a foolish notion of Tom's. Not everyone had access to a great cook of a grandmother/mother/auntie.

He should treat the chefs as individuals and not stereotype them by their ethnicity. And it's probably just me, but I am sick to death of hearing about the chefs sexual preferences since I doubt this has little if anything to do with their abilities in the kitchen.

Uhh...or grandfather, father or uncle? :shock: Just thought I'd add that in since we're on the subject of stereotyping.


Maybe I would have more friends if I didn't eat so much garlic?

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I don't watch the last chance show. Anyone know who is still on?

Well, since they advertise the LCK on Top Chef, and they show who is going to be competing, I guess it's not a spoiler to tell you. It's Kristen.


I don't understand why rappers have to hunch over while they stomp around the stage hollering.  It hurts my back to watch them. On the other hand, I've been thinking that perhaps I should start a rap group here at the Old Folks' Home.  Most of us already walk like that.

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I watched a marathon of LCK on the ole elliptical machine over the weekend and other than the sandwich challenge, I found the episodes probably more interesting than the show itself. Imagine a tv show focused solely on cooking without the dumb team challenges! I even kinda like the toyota prius commercials:)

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Hey --

Is the finale this week, or is it next week? I can't tell from the website / promos... I'm thinking next week, since this week they are presumably bringing the LCK winner back?

Emily

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@ Big Joe the Pro, heh. I actually had typed dad/grandpa/uncle originally and decided I was being redundant.

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Hey --

Is the finale this week, or is it next week? I can't tell from the website / promos... I'm thinking next week, since this week they are presumably bringing the LCK winner back?

Emily

The finale is a two parter airing the 20th and the 27th. This next episode ends with two chefs going to LA . I assume then that the LCK/Fan favorite nonsense will be resolved in the penultimate almost but not quite finale episode, with the 2d part of the finale being the actual finale with who knows what number of contestants.

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@ Big Joe the Pro, heh. I actually had typed dad/grandpa/uncle originally and decided I was being redundant.

Hey, no worries.

I've been rewatching season 5 (Stephan, Fabio, Carla and the guy who won). I'd forgotten how unpopular he had been with most of the contestants. He came across to the others as egotistical, bossy and hard to work with. It's really in stark contrast to this current season (the finalists all thought he was 'a great guy'), isn't it? I wonder why the big change?


Maybe I would have more friends if I didn't eat so much garlic?

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As much as I have been a fan of Top Chef over the years, I feel like the show has run its course at this point. I think this season has been only slightly better than Texas, DC and New York (S.5), but is far below the series highlights of seasons 3 (Miami), 4 (Chicago), and especially 6 (Vegas).

Bravo won't or can't do it, but I would love for Top Chef to go on hiatus for a couple of years to let the talent pool build back up and maybe tinker with the format a bit.

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I'm actually enjoying this season more than previous years. It seems that the focus has been drawn more toward more realistic cooking-related challenges and not the inane challenges of the past--like cooking with ingredients out of a 7-11 convenience store or making something chi-chi out of the hot dogs, popcorn and greasy pizza on the Staten Island Ferry. I agree that the talent pool this year hasn't felt as inspiring as the past, i.e. Hung, Blais and the Voltaggio brothers, but in general I think it's been a good group. There hasn't been a true star throughout, but there hasn't been a nasty villain, i.e. Spike or Marcel. I'd like to see the next great American Chef, but I'm also glad to have a consistent level of talent rather than one star and two outcasts.

I've endured the dreadful catering challenges over the years, but even those seem tempered this year. At least we haven't seen any woppy wedding cake challenges. Yet I wait the entire season for the finale when the Chefs have the opportunity to create their own, signature menu. My hope is that it will be a grand affair. I hope.

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Agreed, sort of.

I never saw Spike as a villain, just an operator. A knave at most. Sgt Bilko with a chef's knife. I think Bourdain called him a "crafty motherf*****"

This year is indeed better without the silly challenges and the nonsense.

Perhaps the magical elves should widen their chef search area to include other countries. They may have exhausted worthy competitors in the US.

edited because I thought some more


Edited by gfweb (log)

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Yay! The breakfast and bacon guy with the arrogant attitude and ridiculous mustache is gone! Gone after failing in LCK too!

Brooke Williamson is increasingly unlikable.


Edited by huiray (log)

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Following my last post, I think this season is much better if you include LCK which has been stellar. Maybe it's just the format of the quickfire-style challenges, but the dishes on LCK appear to have been far more creative than on the regular episodes.

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