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SobaAddict70

Top Chef

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i also noticed no one mentioned miguel's duo of beef. but i remember harold askign miguel to make it and he gave direction. tiffani, on the other hand, jsut said "take dessert" to dave.

although i NEVER know what relaly happened, because they edit the hell out of everything. maybe tiffani DID give dave direction.

bringing back the finalists to help them was a VERY good decision on the producers' part. they knew it would create drama, tension, and be much more entertaining!

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the recipe for beef is pretty different than the original, look on the bravo site... and they acknowledged the concept came from miguel. harold put miguel and lee anne's names on the written menu before his own. he was smart and above board using his coworkers talents and giving them credit personally and professionally. a team effort was required and he got a great one.

tiff took the desert idea only because she was desperate.

she should have given some credit to dave, but she pretended it was her idea, when it was dave's recipe and idea both. maybe she had a garnish idea, but like a lot of dave's cooking-- they loved the taste of it. dave won more challenges than tiff or harold, people consistently loved his food.

i have a feeling with dave's dish, her contribution was plating it. she seemed a little obsessed with the plating. she had no trust for her the others in the kitchen. but that's what happens when you're a liar and a, dare i say it? snake! sss ssssss!

i also noticed no one mentioned miguel's duo of beef. but i remember harold askign miguel to make it and he gave direction. tiffani, on the other hand, jsut said "take dessert" to dave.

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First off, congrats to Harold. As most here have said, he does seem to have the right personality/talent to be a top chef and inspire others. Some other observations:

- I have to chime in on Tiffani's comment about Harold's knife finding her back! I cringed when I heard that one. To his credit, Harold ever the gentlemen softly said sorry. I wanted to jump through the tv and say "sorry for what!?"

- That said, I thought it pretty cruel of the judges to tell her during the final judging that all of the four--Miguel, Lee Anne, Stephen, and Dave--voted for Harold as top chef. How low class and cheesy Tom Colicchio and to what end?

- I'd thought Dave's desserts looked quite luscious and that while he and Stephen were hungover they both swallowed hard and gave it their all. If not then why all the kudos for the desserts and the wine pairings, especially with artichokes? Also I seem to recall Dave mentioning that there were a lot of tasks that Tiffani insisted on doing herself such as plating each dish and did not accept their offers to help.

- Unfortunately for people like Tiffani they tend to suffer from dual character flaws which entail a complete lack of regard for the feelings and dignity of others while simultaneously being ever so sensitive (read that thin skinned) when confronted with their behavior. The fact that she can't even bring herself to acknowledge this flaw speaks volumes. I'm sure the producers/editors did everything to highlight her as THE BITCH but I don't think they would have been able to orchestrate the level of disdain the others felt for her if it wasn't genuine.

- I did admire her gutsiness in planning her tasting menu, especially that diver scallop with the squid ink sauce and the artichoke dishes, and wondered if her choices might blow away Harold's more conservative approach.

- About Harold's decision to serve the fig tart with the cheese and the appropriate wine, well I thought that looked amazing and all the judges loved it. I know that these are normally separate courses but can any of you fine diners out there tell me if this is a new trend and your opinions of this type of presentation?


Edited by divalasvegas (log)

Inside me there is a thin woman screaming to get out, but I can usually keep the Bitch quiet: with CHOCOLATE!!!

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you got that right. a lot of people dislike tiff because we have suffered working under clueless egomaniacs just like her. she has a lot to learn from harold.

instead of learning anything at all about accepting responsibility for her behavior or treating people with respect, she used her lesson in "duality" as a gimmick for her menu. it's funny to me that was part of her downfall....

she'd be happy as a clam and feel vindicated with her sneaky cut throat BS if she won.

i'm sure she'll get job offers from those who share her lack of values. i hope they keep her away from the customers though.

- Unfortunately for people like Tiffani they tend to suffer from dual character flaws which entail a complete lack of regard for the feelings and dignity of others while simultaneously being ever so sensitive (read that thin skinned) when confronted with their behavior.  The fact that she can't even bring herself to acknowledge this flaw speaks volumes.  I'm sure the producers/editors did everything to highlight her as THE BITCH but I don't think they would have been able to orchestrate the level of disdain the others felt for her if it wasn't genuine.

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My greatest problem though was with Dave and Stephen. Getting drunk the night before and showing up drunk for the final cookoff - immature, disloyal and totally unprofessional. In real life they would have been fired on the spot. I lost any respect or appreciation I might have had for either Dave or Stephen.

I agree Holly. Dave is a tiresome, bitter "queen" and he grated on my nerves much more then Tiffani(and I'm no fan of hers.)

Dave's claiming his professionalism on national television was hilarious and short sighted. Isn't he unemployed right now? He certainly did himself no favors last night.

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Aside from how the show ended, was anyone turned off by the general demeaning attitude of the judges? The way they belittled everyone and the negative tone was a huge downer. I assume they were following the "rip the sheet out of them than pass one or two compliments" reality show format that's been proven effective ala Apprentice, etc. I was turned off and wanted to tell the all to f-off. :shock:


Edited by Eatmywords (log)

That wasn't chicken

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A few observations:

Dave went into the idea of working with Tiffini with a good spirit; by the second day he was disgusted with her. Both he and Stephen pointed out that they would have thought she would have treated them well, since she needed them if she was going to have any hope of winning, but she treated them poorly.

Dave had the foresight to realize that the final showdown would likely involve a full meal, including dessert, and since he knew dessert wasn't his strong point, he worked on one ahead of time, perfected it, and memorized the recipe --hoping he would need it. Tiffini should have realized the same thing, and should have figured something out ahead of time. But she didn't; she was sooooooo lucky Dave ended up on her team and was generous enough to just do it for her. It wasn't his competition. He could have hung back, with a "tell me what you want me to do" attitude, but instead he dived right in. She would have been screwed without him.

I wasn't crazy about Dave and Stephen showing up for the final day hungover. And they knew it would be televised. Not very professional, and they may pay for that in the end. Even though I have a soft spot for Dave, he and Stephen just need to grow up. Just think about how much mileage they both could have reaped from just being solid and professional all the way through.

I did notice someone who looked an awful lot like Miguel in the French Culinary Institute commercial. I checked the bios; the ones I checked didn't say anything about where the participants were educated. I also thought I heard Tiffini say that she has had no formal culinary education. Did I hear right?

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I haven't a single doubt that if the judges had hated the desserts, Tiffani would have been more than happy to give Dave the "credit" then. :rolleyes:

I have to chime in on Tiffani's comment about Harold's knife finding her back! I cringed when I heard that one. To his credit, Harold ever the gentlemen softly said sorry. I wanted to jump through the tv and say "sorry for what!?"

I was yelling at the TV myself. "What the hell are you apologizing for??!!??"

Dave's claiming his professionalism on national television was hilarious and short sighted.

Well - he did manage to show up and assist his arch nemesis. He even graciously gave her his dessert recipes. He wasn't too drunk to produce a lot of oooohs and aaahhs from the judges. Given his history with Tiffani I'm surprised he didn't actively sabotage her, even with the cameras rolling. I'd certainly have been sorely tempted. He might be a bitter queen, but she made him that way. He certainly doesn't seem to be the sort to be nasty without provocation. And his food consistently - even more so than Harold's - got raves from the judges.

Unfortunately for people like Tiffani they tend to suffer from dual character flaws which entail a complete lack of regard for the feelings and dignity of others while simultaneously being ever so sensitive (read that thin skinned) when confronted with their behavior. The fact that she can't even bring herself to acknowledge this flaw speaks volumes. I'm sure the producers/editors did everything to highlight her as THE BITCH but I don't think they would have been able to orchestrate the level of disdain the others felt for her if it wasn't genuine.

Precisely my thoughts. Hard to believe someone so bitchy and insensitive could think Harold was stabbing her in the back. I was almost laughing when she mustered up those crocodile tears because now she can't travel the world. That wasn't even what the money was supposed to be for.

I was flabberghasted that one of the duos of food chosen was ARTICHOKES to purposefully be paired with wines - big paint stripping tannic reds no less. BAD idea! Artichokes make virtually any wine taste like a sip of orange juice after brushing your teeth. Blech! Even if there had been some whites, maybe Gruner Veltliner or Txakolina offered up to pair with the artichokes, that choice was quite revealing of how little Tiff knows about wine and food pairing.

Do we think that Stephen just let that one pass through as revenge?? :hmmm:


Katie M. Loeb
Booze Muse, Spiritual Advisor

Author: Shake, Stir, Pour:Fresh Homegrown Cocktails

Cheers!
Bartendrix,Intoxicologist, Beverage Consultant, Philadelphia, PA
Captain Liberty of the Good Varietals, Aphrodite of Alcohol

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Well - he did manage to show up and assist his arch nemesis.  He even graciously gave her his dessert recipes.  He wasn't too drunk to produce a lot of oooohs and aaahhs from the judges.  Given his history with Tiffani I'm surprised he didn't actively sabotage her, even with the cameras rolling.  I'd certainly have been sorely tempted.  He might be a bitter queen, but she made him that way.  He certainly doesn't seem to be the sort to be nasty without provocation.  And his food consistently - even more so than Harold's - got raves from the judges.

...

I was flabberghasted that one of the duos of food chosen was ARTICHOKES to purposefully be paired with wines - big paint stripping tannic reds no less.  BAD idea!  Artichokes make virtually any wine taste like a sip of orange juice after brushing your teeth.  Blech!  Even if there had been some whites, maybe Gruner Veltliner or Txakolina offered up to pair with the artichokes, that choice was quite revealing of how little Tiff knows about wine and food pairing.

Do we think that Stephen just let that one pass through as revenge?? :hmmm:

While I was first annoyed that Dave and Stephen showed up to work drunk, I realized that it is quite possible this was taped shortly after the reunion and/or the quickfire challenge. If you'd just been voted off the island, moments from victory, you might want to go out and get a little drunk too. Still not "professional" but slightly less than intentionally f**king with Tiffani.

She said something about the things she paired the artichokes with as making them more palatable with the wine. And this dish wasn't singled out as a poor pairing. Is there ANY chance that it worked?


The Kitchn

Nina Callaway

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while dave's dessert contribution was very generous, i'm quite sure he was aware that everyoen would ifnd out it was his. he got his last shot at exposure there.

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She said something about the things she paired the artichokes with as making them more palatable with the wine. And this dish wasn't singled out as a poor pairing. Is there ANY chance that it worked?

I just watch a little of the rebroadcast of the final show and caught the judges' comments on the wine pairing with the artichoke dishes. Overall, the concensus was that the pairing worked.

Also, that lovely artichoke risotto came with a gorgeous piece of pork belly on top. Could that have facilitated the wine pairing? Actually, who cares, it was pork belly. :wub:

Edited for additional comments.


Edited by divalasvegas (log)

Inside me there is a thin woman screaming to get out, but I can usually keep the Bitch quiet: with CHOCOLATE!!!

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She said something about the things she paired the artichokes with as making them more palatable with the wine. And this dish wasn't singled out as a poor pairing. Is there ANY chance that it worked?

I just watch a little of the rebroadcast of the final show and caught the judges' comments on the wine pairing with the artichoke dishes. Overall, the concensus was that the pairing worked.

I'll have to watch again in rerun. I could have sworn I heard Tom and someone else say that it didn't work.

edited to add:

Also, that lovely artichoke risotto came with a gorgeous piece of pork belly on top. Could that have facilitated the wine pairing? Actually, who cares, it was pork belly. :wub: 

That's valid. What could be bad about pork belly and anything to wash it down with? :wub:


Katie M. Loeb
Booze Muse, Spiritual Advisor

Author: Shake, Stir, Pour:Fresh Homegrown Cocktails

Cheers!
Bartendrix,Intoxicologist, Beverage Consultant, Philadelphia, PA
Captain Liberty of the Good Varietals, Aphrodite of Alcohol

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In the past, arguments were made in Tiffany's defence, to the effect that this is a competition, and not a popularity contest. Hence, you do what you need to do, in order to win -- popular or not. I don't agree with that, but for the sake of argument, if I were to accept this notion, then Stephen and Dave should do whatever they need to do, in order to sabotage her. You can't say "it's a competition" when Tiffany behaves badly, only to turn around and say "oooh, that'd never fly in real life" when others do it...

Now that the competition is over, the contestants should be free to talk about it -- so where is LEE ANNE'S BLOG? Someone pointed to it in this thread a few weeks ago, but it went 404 within a day or two (which made perfect sense, since the competition was still going). She only made two or three entries, but they were damn funny, and very well written. I'd really like to read more of that stuff... Does anyone know if she's moved her blog to a different location or something like that?

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I got caught up in the LOST finale last night and missed the TC finale...luckily it was on late this afternoon. thoughts:

RE a comment by Tess:

"but in my opinion a man would not have been portrayed as a villain for acting the way she did."

PLEASE! Tiffani was not portrayed in a negative light because she was a female, a lesbian, or red-haired! It was quite simply her own doing and her own personality. She was a bitch, end of story. There were plenty of women on that show, and none of them came off like her. Besides, IIRC, more men were portrayed as villains - Stephen for sure with his general condescension and candice flamefest, Miguel throwing Andrea "under the bus", and of course Ken.

Re the unprofessionalism of Dave and Stephen:

I guess what goes around comes around. In the real world, you deal with unprofessional people. In the real world, they could've been canned on the spot and told to go home. Top Chef is not the real world, it's a reality tv show...and all that implies. Tiffani certainly didn't try and forge solid relationships to garner some loyalty. For everyone who thinks that they came off negatively on a public stage, there are probably people who agreed with what they did. They had absolutely no incentive to do more than they did. Tiffani would steal all the glory (dessert) and and pass off all the blame. She certainly wouldn't share any of the winnings, whereas I can see Harold flying Miguel and Leeanne out for a celebratory trip. More importantly, as others have noted, Dave still pulled off what was apparently a ridiculously good dessert. He could've stuck some fish bones in there if he really wanted to sink her ship. I have a feeling they will have plenty of job offerings as a result of this show.

Re the panel and next season:

Tom says in his blog that he's no Tim Gunn. Duh. Thanks Captain Obvious. Perhaps he should stick with the judging and let someone else play the role of the mentor. Oh, and am I the only one who doesn't believe that the film crew doesn't have video of someone adjusting the oven temps? I find that hard to believe. "back and to the left. back and to the left." The truth is out there. Speaking of blogs, why didn't Katie get one? That girl is as wooden as my end table. Surely an english major could type up some kind of drivel that would top off her heavily medicated speaking style. There simply must be some kind of fresh faced tart who can read with a little more enthusiam than the future ex-wife of Billy Joel. The last thing I would like to see next season is a little more openness with regards to judging. While I think that the scoring on Iron Chef America can be a little bogus at times, at least it's out there. Perhaps people still wouldn't be satisfied if they saw Miguel scored an 87 while Candice scored a 73, but at least the results would seem a little more valid. I think Leeane and Dave probably got screwed somewhere along the way...moreso than the other contestants.

I guess I'm done and will pack my knives now. My back has fallen into eGullet's collective knife.

(I hope fat guy gives me an awkward and unnecessary "sorry" :biggrin: )


Edited by carpetbagger, esq. (log)

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My greatest problem though was with Dave and Stephen.  Getting drunk the night before and showing up drunk for the final cookoff - immature, disloyal and totally unprofessional.  In real life they would have been fired on the spot. 

it was a game, TV- not real life. in one fell swoop of a bender, they got to party down + rattle her cage big time. to me, that's some very efficient multitasking. :laugh:

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I apologize if this has been previous addressed, but does anyone know where Harold is opening his restaurant in Manhattan?

Thanks!

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it was a game, TV- not real life.  in one fell swoop of a bender, they got to party down + rattle her cage big time. to me, that's some very efficient multitasking.  :laugh:

:laugh: Right on! That's some funny shit right there...


Katie M. Loeb
Booze Muse, Spiritual Advisor

Author: Shake, Stir, Pour:Fresh Homegrown Cocktails

Cheers!
Bartendrix,Intoxicologist, Beverage Consultant, Philadelphia, PA
Captain Liberty of the Good Varietals, Aphrodite of Alcohol

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I apologize if this has been previous addressed, but does anyone know where Harold is opening his restaurant in Manhattan?

Thanks!

i would suggest bookmarking his restaurant's website

his wiki says he's still searching for a location and financing...although his myspace page says he's looking the west village area.

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I watched all the episodes and want to add my thoughts.

The show taken in totality was really good viewing, with a good mix of

personalities and talents in various areas of the kitchen.

I enjoyed the competition until the penultimate episode. I believe the

end was predetermined and if this was so, took the viewing public for

fools.

It is my thought the producers did not and could not see Dave meet

Harold in the finals. Harold clearly to me, came across as having the

overall abilities and was most centered in terms of cooking, dealing with staff

and the overall business end of heading a restaurant.

Dave's personality just did not meet that post.

The problem for me was that in terms of taste, Dave far and away won over

Tiffany. It seemed none of her dishes did much for any of the people tasting

them, yet she won over Dave. Incredible.

I do not think the producers wanted the chance of having a final challenge with

Dave versus Harold. Know why. Because based on taste, Dave had a damn good chance of winning and those involved did not view him as Top Chef material.

I cannot believe most viewers did not see all of this coming.

It was truly a no brainer. There was simply no chance in hell that sullen Tiffany was going to win the challenge over Harold.

That did it for me and I resent the notion that the audience was played with in such

an arrogant and demeaning manner.

It was almost as if there was a a little picture of that arrogant twit Stephan in the corner of the t.v. screen with his shit eaten grin looking down on us.

Just my impressions.

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I watched all the episodes and want to add my thoughts.

The show taken in totality was really good viewing, with a good mix of

personalities and talents in various areas of the kitchen.

I enjoyed the competition until the penultimate episode.  I believe the

end was predetermined and if this was so, took the viewing public for

fools.

It is my thought the producers did not and could not see Dave meet

Harold in the finals.  Harold clearly to me, came across as having the

overall abilities and was most centered in terms of cooking, dealing with staff

and the overall business end of heading a restaurant.

Dave's personality just did not meet that post. 

The problem for me was that in terms of taste, Dave far and away won over

Tiffany.  It seemed none of her dishes did much for any of the people tasting

them, yet she won over Dave.  Incredible.

I do not think the producers wanted the chance of having a final challenge with

Dave versus Harold.  Know why.  Because based on taste, Dave had a damn good chance of winning and those involved did not view him as Top Chef material.

I cannot believe most viewers did not see all of this coming. 

It was truly a no brainer.  There was simply no chance in hell that sullen Tiffany was going to win the challenge over Harold.

That did it for me and I resent the notion that the audience was played with in such

an arrogant and demeaning manner. 

It was almost as if there was a a little picture of that arrogant twit Stephan in the corner of the t.v. screen with his shit eaten grin looking down on us.

Just my impressions.

What Howard said. For all the (many) faults of the Next Food Network Star, they were at least upfront about their goal. They were making their judgements largely on what, according to their market research, would appeal to the food network viewer. With TC, you had to pay really close attention to discover that the judges' "decisions" were made in concert with the producers'. Many times the judges had to tap dance all over the place trying to 'justify' a decision that was so obviously not theirs, but Bravo's. I really hate "Reality TV" and this is one of the reasons why.

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I watched all the episodes and want to add my thoughts.

The show taken in totality was really good viewing, with a good mix of

personalities and talents in various areas of the kitchen.

I enjoyed the competition until the penultimate episode.  I believe the

end was predetermined and if this was so, took the viewing public for

fools.

It is my thought the producers did not and could not see Dave meet

Harold in the finals.  Harold clearly to me, came across as having the

overall abilities and was most centered in terms of cooking, dealing with staff

and the overall business end of heading a restaurant.

Dave's personality just did not meet that post. 

The problem for me was that in terms of taste, Dave far and away won over

Tiffany.  It seemed none of her dishes did much for any of the people tasting

them, yet she won over Dave.  Incredible.

I do not think the producers wanted the chance of having a final challenge with

Dave versus Harold.  Know why.  Because based on taste, Dave had a damn good chance of winning and those involved did not view him as Top Chef material.

I cannot believe most viewers did not see all of this coming. 

It was truly a no brainer.  There was simply no chance in hell that sullen Tiffany was going to win the challenge over Harold.

That did it for me and I resent the notion that the audience was played with in such

an arrogant and demeaning manner. 

It was almost as if there was a a little picture of that arrogant twit Stephan in the corner of the t.v. screen with his shit eaten grin looking down on us.

Just my impressions.

What Howard said. For all the (many) faults of the Next Food Network Star, they were at least upfront about their goal. They were making their judgements largely on what, according to their market research, would appeal to the food network viewer. With TC, you had to pay really close attention to discover that the judges' "decisions" were made in concert with the producers'. Many times the judges had to tap dance all over the place trying to 'justify' a decision that was so obviously not theirs, but Bravo's. I really hate "Reality TV" and this is one of the reasons why.

You truly see through everything. Nah, you don't. Dave F-ed up majorly when he forgot to include a third dish, it doesn't matter that nobody eating it noticed, he did not finish and was disqualified, same as Miguel and his falafel buns. I agree Dave has better taste, but clearly the judges were justified in their decision to disqualify Dave. It's like the guy who's in the lead in the 26th mile of a marathon and breaks a foot. I agree with carpetbagger, esq. that Dave can go places, and if I wasn't straight, I'd be a Dave groupie, but he DNQ'd out, so save the drama. I thought Tiffani almost pulled it off last ep., her food struck me as better than Harold's, but she wouldn't shut her mouth and be humble for once so she loses. Plus the regular judges were so poisoned against her by now (for good reason) that they were fired up to trash her as much and as vociferously as possible. It may take some time, but hopefully she finds some corner of the world to call her own and makes the best of it. She's obviously intelligent, I wouldn't be suprised if she manages to wake up a bit.

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Well you're right, you know, there is a whole world of culinary technique and traditions which everyone is exposed to at one time or another. We didn't taste anything on this show, but we have taste perceptions that help us relate to one another's cooking these are developed through one's own cooking, and by eating others food. It's these perceived tastes we are talking about when we say one's tastes better than another. It can also be our perception of the judges' table reactions as well. It is at best a combination of the two. I for one like to preface all my statments about the contestant's food by I thought, or in my opinion. By using this language I am admitting a degree of uncertainty, which would still exist if I am there actually tasting it, because after all, nobody I've ever met is worthy of ultimately judging anyone about anything. I also respect most people who communicate in this way as well.

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Did anyone here actually taste any of these dishes?  Perhaps we should be talking about "perceived taste."

=R=

That's a major problem with this show as opposed to Project Runway. The viewer is way too dependent on what people say, and generally they don't say it in much depth. It's also hard to keep track of what happened. After each episode of Project Runway, there would be a detailed rundown with pictures and comments on each designer's work. On this show, the blogs were less detailed when you really needed them to be more, IMO. (And, they were more devoted to justifying decisions whereas Tim Gunn, not a judge, could say what he pleased.)

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I only saw the last episode and the Napa episode where Lee Anne was kicked off, so maybe I shouldn't comment on this - and as with Kim Shook, I hate reality shows, too. It will completely bias what I'm about to say.

I hated the two cookie cutter brunettes who flanked Colicchio as judges. I could only differentiate them by their petulance and charmlessness. (Charmless was Billie Joel's current wife - Petulant was the one who sat on the other side). What kind of street creds do they have that would earn them those seats? Colicchio had genuine screen presence as well as mastery in his field, and everything he had to say carried weight. They had neither.

I hated it that the really interesting stuff - e.g., the conversations of the luminaries who were actually eating the food - was given such short shrift, and that instead, we had to watch endless, repeated close-ups of the contestants' strained faces during the judging sessions. Crap TV.

I didn't see the earlier episodes, so I don't know anything about the personality problems that Tiffani and Stephen seemed to possess (and which must have been the highlights of the shows, judging from the feedback). For me, what set Harold apart during the final episode was seeing him ask the wait staff how each course was being received - he was paying attention to that, rather than to besting anyone, and it was that focus which will get him someplace. It was interesting to see that he had genuinely earned the privilege of being called "chef" by Lee Anne, and that he was graceful enough to ask her to still call him Harold.

Tiffani was so focussed on winning, she forgot what the bigger picture was all about.


Edited by H. du Bois (log)

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