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SobaAddict70

Top Chef

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I came across a rerun of this the other night -- was underwhelmed by all but the judges. A couple of comments: the obnoxious guy seemed to have been kicked because he is/was obnoxious. Personally, I'd have thought it was better TV to have him going head to head with the two women who were on camera so much (Lee Ann and ___?)

Second, when I read the cast bios, for chrissakes. Who cares if someone is bisexual?

Last, am I supposed to know who the host is, except that she's married to some old guy whose songs we used to sing in the car, when I was about her age?

I'm not really as cranky today as I sound. Really. :wink:


"Oh, tuna. Tuna, tuna, tuna." -Andy Bernard, The Office

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more information .. better details

Billy Joel's wife is the host, the top prize is $100,000, shot in San Francisco and the Bay area, will be featured in Food & Wine Magazine ... sounds like a good project ... not at all "Restaurant-ish"    :wink:

Olive and Peach is Katie Joel's website ...

Unlike Hell’s Kitchen, there will be no blustering, foul-mouthed celebrity Chef Ramsey to amuse us or make us cringe. With Top Chef, the contestants will be the stars. We will be privy to watching twelve aspiring chefs, with ages ranging from 23 to 54, find their way to San Francisco and work their cooking butts off, in hopes of becoming the (drum roll) Top Chef. Like Hell’s Kitchen, these contestants’ cooking backgrounds are versatile. For example, we’ll meet plain old culinary students and graduates, celebrity personal chefs, up and coming chefs, along with the token self-taught mother of three. What more could one ask for?
from Reality News Online

I tried going to the "more information... better details" site and got bombarded with popups. Just a caution.


It is good to be a BBQ Judge.  And now it is even gooder to be a Steak Cookoff Association Judge.  Life just got even better.  Woo Hoo!!!

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It's funny how it was sooo important that the irishman used his finger to taste the sauce, when not one person was shown washing their hands before joining the line!!! they were all backstage doing "something" with their hands and then they came out and plated food with those same dirty fingers. The mouth is much more sanitized than say their hair, or the floor.

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Well, while It was somewhat interesting last week, the show pretty much evaporated what little credibility it had this week with the incredibly stupid sex shop/dessert project.

You just completely lose me when cooking intersects with subjects encompassing sex/body contact and its just plain disgusting.

AND they try to have an intellectual discussion about the desserts afterwards ?????????

Give me a break.

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They thought the party would be good TV, and it sort of was, but the food and sex thing has been done to death from both sides. So to speak.

I agree, the discussion at the end was lame. Did they say anything specific about the taste of the food except that the wine guy's champagne was too dry? (I was called away during part of that.)

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I was completely turned off by tonight's program. It just went way over the edge with the bondage shop thing, really how far out to the fringe can you go???

For what it is worth, Stephen's kvetching when he thought he would win and didn't was amusing. Pompous ass.

I'm done with the show.

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Maybe they thought the whole sex shop/food thing would make good TV, but frankly, I thought they spent entirely too much time on what they thought were provocative shots of the party guests and nowhere near enough on the food. I ended up walking away from the program for awhile and just coming back to see how it ended.

It seems to me that part of the problem inherent in this show is that with so many contestants and so many multi-part dishes it's darned hard to keep straight who made what, let alone what it all tasted like.

Unlike Project Runway, it's obvious the producers don't trust their contestants, their personalities, and their skills to carry the show, so they're going for cheap "thrills".

And Katie Lee Joel is still painfully to watch.

Marcia.


Don't forget what happened to the man who suddenly got everything he wanted...he lived happily ever after. -- Willy Wonka

eGullet foodblog

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Just saw two two first episodes...

First off, I use a spoon to taste things, and it puts me off to see people use their fingers. However, that whole Kenneth Lee (the arrogant Irishman) finger-in-the-sauce thing seemed kinda contrived. No one's brought this up in this thread so far, but remember how Keller berated Lee, saying they'd have to throw the sauce out and start over again?

Lee wasn't told off for being obnoxious until he dared to ask Keller if he really HAD thrown the sauce out. I think this was a perfectly valid question, but you never saw him answer it -- you just saw the entire room falling upon Lee like a pack of famished hyenas on a quadriplegic zebra. True or false, it totally gave me the impression that the sauce hadn't been thrown out after all... Which seems pathetic and hypocritical to me...

Very "The Emperor's New Clothes" meets "Lord of the Flies," you know? The whole thing looked oddly similar to the scene from that FoodTV cooking show, where a contestant dared to offer the opinion that one of Todd English's dishes were oversalted.

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Just saw two two first episodes...

First off, I use a spoon to taste things, and it puts me off to see people use their fingers. However, that whole Kenneth Lee (the arrogant Irishman) finger-in-the-sauce thing seemed kinda contrived. No one's brought this up in this thread so far, but remember how Keller berated Lee, saying they'd have to throw the sauce out and start over again?

Lee wasn't told off for being obnoxious until he dared to ask Keller if he really HAD thrown the sauce out. I think this was a perfectly valid question, but you never saw him answer it -- you just saw the entire room falling upon Lee like a pack of famished hyenas on a quadriplegic zebra. True or false, it totally gave me the impression that the sauce hadn't been thrown out after all... Which seems pathetic and hypocritical to me...

Very "The Emperor's New Clothes" meets "Lord of the Flies," you know? The whole thing looked oddly similar to the scene from that FoodTV cooking show, where a contestant dared to offer the opinion that one of Todd English's dishes were oversalted.

Sorry to contradict you Grub but we cant give credit to TFN for Cooking Under Fire that belonged to PBS. So far TFN hasn't been that gritty.

I'll agree, the whole conflict over the sauce seemed odd. And you are right, they never did answer if the sauce was actually tossed so it seemed like big words with no action...well, except to boot the offender.

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I'll agree, the whole conflict over the sauce seemed odd.  And you are right, they never did answer if the sauce was actually tossed so it seemed like big words with no action...well, except to boot the offender.

I don't think you can be sure-- either that they didn't throw the sauce out or that K never answered the question. Week after week, I was amazed at hearing Tim Gunn's podcast about Project Runway and finding out how heavy the editing had been. Admittedly, on PR they were very blatant about posting teasers that had been edited to be misleading and then revealing what it was really about the following week, so you knew to suspect some of that.

I think they were so excited about PR that they tried to cut and paste this show into it, and they didn't allow enough for the different subject matter. The themes for the immunity challenge-- work on a line; do something with fruit-- have been interesting and revealing but the themes for the other challenges have both been really weak. A signature dish and a sexy dessert-- whoopee. I agree about not trusting the contestants enough too.

To be fair, I looked at the ending of the show when they replayed it and they did talk about the taste of the food by the top three a little bit. And seeing the wine guy's face when he didn't come in first was funny. If indeed that's when he made that face. (He's always making a face like "Who stepped in dog s***?")

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Funny about last weeks episode with the finger in the sauce, and throughout the other chefs plating, we could see them touching everything going on the plate with their hands...plating asparagus with their hands, putting on edible garnish with their hands, etc....funny

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Will we never escape Elizabeth Faulkner in the media? Why oh why must we suffer through that personality on nation wide television?

Who's next? That Fish named Shuna?

Ugh!


Edited by Brioche57 (log)

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thought: steven is 6 parts daniel franco with a splash of barry manilow.

tin foil hat theory: red-headed lesbian turned down the oven to screw over the asian girl.

carry on.

ps."and yes, i am a model *rolls eyes*"

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Sorry to contradict you Grub but we cant give credit to TFN for Cooking Under Fire that belonged to PBS.  So far TFN hasn't been that gritty.

Oh yeah, you're right -- that was on PBS, not TFN. Thanks.

Funny about last weeks episode with the finger in the sauce, and throughout the other chefs plating, we could see them touching everything going on the plate with their hands...plating asparagus with their hands, putting on edible garnish with their hands, etc....funny

My thoughts exactly.

I've got a theory, as to why they let the bratty Irishmen go so soon -- the ginger haired ac/dc gal will take his place as the major source of conflict and trauma on the show. In some of her shots, she looks halfway relaxed and friendly, but man -- in about half of her appearances, she looks like someone had just flung cat piss in her face and murdered her entire family with a cheese grater. She looks SO ANGRY.

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I'm obviously in the minority, but I thought the episode was fun. The whole sex shop thing didn't bother me at all. C'mon folks - they're in San Francisco!

I thought Tiffany's cookie on a string idea was absolutely brilliant. Too bad they didn't taste good - otherwise she would have won easily. How hard is it to make cookies that taste good!


Tammy's Tastings

Creating unique food and drink experiences

eGullet Foodblogs #1 and #2
Dinner for 40

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To me, the problem was not the sex shop, but the whole erotic food thing. Here I was relieved that all that was over for another year with Valentines just past. Agreed, you have to give Tiffani-- and, to some extent, Miguel-- credit for actually doing something performance art-y with it. I would have been with Lee Anne, reluctant to do the gimmick.

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I thought I must be some sort of major perv, because within moments of finding out what the challenge was, I had a mental list of about 20 options going.

And what's up with all these contestants whining "I'm not a pastry chef..."? What planet are they from? Most line cooks I know view pastry work with major disdain, and barely acknowledge the need for a kitchen to employ a pastry chef, although they do acknowledge that having one on the payroll ensures that they don't have to sully their golden hands with icing sugar.

Do I sound bitter? :laugh:


Marsha Lynch aka "zilla369"

Has anyone ever actually seen a bandit making out?

Uh-huh: just as I thought. Stereotyping.

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I thought I must be some sort of major perv, because within moments of finding out what the challenge was, I had a mental list of about 20 options going.

I'd love to hear some of your ideas, in fact!

My problem with the topic is partly occupational-- I used to do some writing for publications that always wanted that kind of thing and I got really tired of it. And I'd be told to ask some list of people for their favorite erotic foods and then get answers we couldn't use. (But I don't do that any more so I'm not looking to steal your ideas, just curious.)

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I was completely turned off by tonight's program.  It just went way over the edge with the bondage shop thing, really how far out to the fringe can you go??? 

For what it is worth, Stephen's kvetching when he thought he would win and didn't was amusing.  Pompous ass.

I'm done with the show.

This was the first episode that i was able to catch and was SO dissappointed. What a terrible show! The theme was not interesting, the desserts were not interesting, and the contestants are not interesting. At least I don't have to waste my time anymore on this. It is just a repeat of all the other reality shows with no redeeming value at all.


It is good to be a BBQ Judge.  And now it is even gooder to be a Steak Cookoff Association Judge.  Life just got even better.  Woo Hoo!!!

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I loved the first, cooking-intensive episode but I didn't enjoy the second one nearly as much. I thought the 'theme' in the second installment felt completely glommed on and sent the erroneous message that food and cooking -- without the additional titillation factor -- aren't compelling enough on their own. Rather than focusing on "restaurant food," this exercise evoked memories of bad caterers and lousy bakeries. And I'll bet that if one interviewed 100 top chefs, less than 5 of those chefs would equate food with sexiness. :wacko:

Still, I'll stay with it for now because, based on the first installment, I'm hopeful that the focus of the show will remain on the food and the cooking.

And is it just me or is Tom Colicchio a dead ringer for Cal Ripken Jr?

=R=


"Hey, hey, careful man! There's a beverage here!" --The Dude, The Big Lebowski

LTHForum.com -- The definitive Chicago-based culinary chat site

ronnie_suburban 'at' yahoo.com

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I'll be sticking with it too. I thought the line cooking thing was cool. I have a feeling that in general the immunity challenges are going to be more interesting because they don't feel they have to come up with a gimmick like the sex shop.

So far, out of all the contestants, the one I would like to have a meal by is Lee Anne. Although Tiffani's pumpkin thing looked delicious too. I like Miguel the best as a contestant but I'm not sure his food is my favorite.

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I think (and hope) that we'll start to see more of the actual cooking once a few more people get eliminated. When they have to show what 11 people are doing, the time spent on each is going to be really minimal. Not to mention that there are that many more opportunities for "interesting" interpersonal content.


Tammy's Tastings

Creating unique food and drink experiences

eGullet Foodblogs #1 and #2
Dinner for 40

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Just watched this week's episode.  Stephen still owns.  For all his pretentiousness I think he's quite talented, especially for being only 24; he seems to know his stuff.  Candace is terrible beyond all belief.  An underwear cake, give me a break.

You're fooled too? Stephen is a bullshit artist of the highest degree. All those little cups of fruit with various flavors in the "quickfire" round? Someone pointed out that he didn't even taste a lot of them. That's way worse than an inedible garnish. If you only have 10 minutes to prepare something and you make 25 little dishes, it's cheating if you don't even make them taste good, but pretend as if they would. I'm not sure why the judge didn't taste them.

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Just watched this week's episode.  Stephen still owns.  For all his pretentiousness I think he's quite talented, especially for being only 24; he seems to know his stuff.  Candace is terrible beyond all belief.  An underwear cake, give me a break.

You're fooled too? Stephen is a bullshit artist of the highest degree. All those little cups of fruit with various flavors in the "quickfire" round? Someone pointed out that he didn't even taste a lot of them. That's way worse than an inedible garnish. If you only have 10 minutes to prepare something and you make 25 little dishes, it's cheating if you don't even make them taste good, but pretend as if they would. I'm not sure why the judge didn't taste them.

I have found all of the dishes Stephen has created so far to be among the most creative and usually the only dishes I would "want" to try. Candice's little hearts of fruit had me laughing out loud. And I would rather see someone experiment with something new and original than have someone use a trite, terrible hotel garnish on what was ultimately a task to measure creativity. I appreciate Harold (does anyone else think he looks kind of like Jack from Lost?) and Lee Anne. They at least know what they're doing. The fact of the matter is that Stephen has been at the top of each of the challenges so far, haughty attitude notwithstanding.

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