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SobaAddict70

Top Chef

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And I think we should remember that this is TV.  Stephen is being kept around for the purpose of creating tension and bringing back viewers.  If this final contest were between Dave, Lee Ann, and Harold, how exciting would it be?  Not very --many of us would be content seeing any of the three win.  We're tuning in, gang, because we're either pro-Steven or anti-Steven.  And that's the way the show's constructed.  If it were purely a contest, not a televised contest, I think other decisions would have been made, and for other reasons.

Thanks jgm for saying this. Exactly, this is tv, so called reality tv which I can't believe that I'm watching, but I am nonetheless. It's amazing that the Stephen-haters here (some of whom are probably the same people who worship Gordon Ramsey who I personally cannot stand) don't get that. Stephen's the guy you love to hate, but I also think that he-- this may be really shocking to some of you, so hold on to something sturdy--is possibly playing to the cameras. Gee do you kinda, sorta think it's possible that's he's going all out in the overbearing obnoxious sommelier department so that he will be kept on week after week and perhaps parlay his onscreen persona into bigger and more lucrative things? Duh.

And before the Gordon Ramsey lovers fire up their keyboards about how accomplished and brilliant and talented he is and therefore has the right to treat people like shit because of those attributes let me be very clear that I don't approve of the Stephen's condecending attitude but I do believe he will go far and that he should and probably will learn to tone down his need to educate people and talk down to them. I mean, he has no chance whatsoever of winning this so-called competition and I think he knows it. He's only 24 years old people and has a lot of learning and living to do. Gordon Ramsey on the other hand is 50 plus years old and is still a gigantic tool IMHO and a very rich, famous, and successful one at that.

Oh, and before I forget: my name is divalasvegas and I STILL like Stephen. :wub:


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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I am sure this is not going to add to my popularity but what the hell...

Since I am in the group that both likes Gordon Ramsay and dislikes Stephen I thought I would toss my two cents in a bit further.

Yes, I am going to defend Gordon Ramsay. No I am not going to go all gooey over his resume, but I would like to point out that even I felt that Hell's Kitchen- while pretty entertaining IMHO -the show did purposely show him as an over-baring, verbally abusive, insensitive tyrant. And much like Simon Cowel's shtick on another Fox show, American audiences responded to it. Love him or hate him tuning in to see what he would do or say next was a big part of the show's appeal- (and yes, this is also part of Top Chef with Stephen). Fox isn't stupid they know how to edit they're programming to what they're viewers are expecting.

Hell's Kitchen editing aside, from the interviews I have read with him, his own web site (http://www.gordonramsay.com/site/index.html-) and having watched his BBC shows (Ramsay's Kitchen Nightmares gives a far better view of him) I think Ramsay is someone who is passionate about food and about his work and has extremely high standards for himself and those who work for him. I don't think that anything he asks of the contestants or the people on the BBC shows is unreasonable. He expects that those around him will give the same 100% that he does and has no patience for those who waste his time. Granted this tends to rub people the wrong way- but such is life.

At the end of the day though as Divalasvegas said this is TV- reality TV at that. And as Diva also pointed out Stephen is the guy some of us love to hate- Stephan winning or losing is not going to have any effect on my day to day life- just as Gordon yelling at Dewberry did not. (and what is it with these shows and guys that cry?) So I guess until one of the networks finally air the show I really want to see (which involves Bourdain and Ramsey browbeating Rachael Ray for her crimes against humanity until she is left in a quivering puddle of her damned EVOO and promising never to open her joker like mouth again) I will just have to agree to disagree with whom the good guys/bad guys of the TV food world are.

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Read it and weep (or not)

TOP CHEF IS BACK!

The Emmy-Nominated Producers of PROJECT RUNWAY, PROJECT GREENLIGHT

and LAST COMIC STANDING are excited to announce the second season of TOP CHEF!

Bravo is once again giving a group of talented chefs the opportunity to show America their talent and creativity! Do you think you have what it takes to become a star of the culinary world and vie to become the next “TOP CHEF?”

We are looking for trained and self-taught professional chefs as well as non-professional cooks. You do not need years of experience but you do need to be creative, highly skilled and ready to compete!

HOW TO APPLY

To schedule an interview and to find out more information about becoming the next top chef, please email us at topchefcasting@yahoo.com with a picture, resume and why you'd be perfect as the next TOP CHEF or go to BRAVOTV.COM to find out about open calls and how to submit a home tape.

In addition:

-you must be 21 years of age or older

-you must be a legal resident of the U.S.

-Neither you nor anyone in your household can be an employee or NBC or Bravo.

Compensation: $100,000 in seed money and a feature in Food and Wine Magazine

no -- Principals only. Recruiters, please don't contact this job poster.

no -- Please, no phone calls about this job!

no -- Please do not contact job poster about other services, products or commercial interests.

yes -- Reposting this message elsewhere is OK.

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No more Stephen.  :biggrin:

I'll drink to that.

Woohoo! I'll drink to that as well. I thought they were going to keep him in just for TV (like Santino in Project Runway), but he really blew it after he abandoned the kitchen. I don't care how well you get the wait staff to "sweep the room"...if the food's not good and you don't pull your weight, you don't deserve to stay. Plus, I was really getting tired of his condescension :raz:

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The guy just seems to live in his own world. I don't know what's really going on in his head, but he comes across as if he thinks he's too advanced and special to be doing the mundane work the other chefs are doing, so he's going to create his own purposes.

He's got lots of talent, but he's gotta get some perspective on his place in the universe, and learn how to channel it constructively. Personally, I don't think he will. I look for him to keep hitting brick walls until he gives up on the industry --and of course it will be anybody's fault but his-- and jumps to a new career field.

I don't think Harold will end up being Top Chef, either. Harold seems to be a good "number 2" guy --the one who works diligently and holds the place together when number 1 can't be around. I'd love to see him acquire more leadership qualities. But the world needs guys like him, and I think he'll always have a place in the kitchen. He's got all of the qualities of a good Boy Scout, which isn't glamorous, but it will make him a valuable employee, and overall, a success in life.

I still think Dave needs a good shrink. There's good stuff in there if someone can help him unlock it.

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As I said last week... IMHO I feel the next on the chopping block is either Stephen or Dave. <----

Looks like I predicted right yet again. It's really "human nature" more or less. I wonder for the last one will it be Dave or Tiffani or Lee Ann that goes.

My prediction will be difficult because Dave seems to have so many peaks and valleys to his work and his emotions. Tiffani seems to lose the human focus/client focus much like Stephen in some ways. Lee Ann doesn't always follow through to completion or doesn't seem to be as exacting as she should be from others or herself.

Based upon this I think unless there's a big upset that Tiffani or Lee Ann would be the next to go unless Dave REALLY loses it. (He really DOES weep way too much, again like I've said previously take it to a therapist, your pillow or alone in your home or room.)

If you're the betting sort I'd lean toward Tiffani. My brief thoughts on Harold is that he usually treads somewhere in the middle ground and is pretty professional and even-tempered and on an even keel most of the time.


Edited by Anonymouze (log)

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(He really DOES weep way too much, again like I've said previously take it to a therapist, your pillow or alone in your home or room.)

I still think Dave needs a good shrink.  There's good stuff in there if someone can help him unlock it.

Hey now, leave my Dave alone!! :wink: He didn't cry once this evening... I was very proud! :smile: (I just can't help it... he may not be the "top chef," but I like him, I really like him!)


"Many people believe the names of In 'n Out and Steak 'n Shake perfectly describe the contrast in bedroom techniques between the coast and the heartland." ~Roger Ebert

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Dave is growing on me (i just wish I could kick his ass through my TV screen "quit your boo-hooing!")

Stephen definitely deserved to be axed. He really has no clue about the BOH (neither do I but at least I know I have no clue).

If the previews of next week are to be interpreted, my money would be on Tiffani to go next. Unfortunate, IMO (I don't have a problem with her at all) but I think that's how it will go down.

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I'm glad Stephen finally got dumped, rather than Lee Anne -- after all that talk about Miguel and "Top Sous Chef..."

It seemed completely contrived that Lee Anne was the other head on the chopping block -- she WON the challenge of selling the menu, right? She did better at that, than any of her competitors, but her reward was that she was held responsible when it went bad -- only the real reason why it went south didn't seem so much to be the contestants, much less Lee Anne. It was the contrived nature of the challenge itself (serve it the next day, and get everything out of a supermarket), which the contestants were only made aware of after the menu had been picked.

Talking about contrived, what the HELL were the judges smoking, talking about the standards THEY were used to in wedding receptions for the Rich and Famous -- I don't think Billy frikkin' Joel had his wedding catered out of a supermarket, in 24 hours... Some of this stuff just really escapes me.

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I think Harold, Lee Ann and Tiffani would be about right for the final three and probably what a lot of people would have predicted early on. I cannot imagine Dave not being the one to leave next based on cooking skill, but of course there are other factors.

I hated that wedding challenge. I'm tired of the team challenges because of the amount of backbiting and stuff they seem to lead to. They are fair enough given the concerns of restaurants in the real world, but a challenge where nobody does very well and all the customers are disappointed is just stupid.

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Did Stephan actually do anything as a "chef" in the last few episodes? I think he deserved to go some time ago, he was all talk and no do, a real waste of everyones time.

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Did Stephan actually do anything as a "chef" in the last few episodes? I think he deserved to go some time ago, he was all talk and no do, a real waste of everyones time.

As much as I think he was ready to go, that's why I don't like the back-to-back team challenges. They hit him in his exact weakness twice. Even if he hadn't been acting like a tool, it would have been natural for him to fall into the wine guy role. Which is why he probably wouldn't have come in first anyway: the show's not Top Sommelier. But I would have liked to see him and Dave each do one dish before leaving. (Assuming Dave leaves next; I hope to god not Tiffani.)

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Grub, we were tivo-pausing it every five seconds during the judging to ask ourselves what they were smoking - and the answer is, I don't know.

I couldn't believe that they had them plan a menu without knowing they'd only have a day to execute it. No one in their right mind would put salmon on a menu, knowing they'd have to deal with what was available at a supermarket.

I was surprised none of them objected during the judging to the standards that were expected for this ridiculous scenario - then again, that's the Tiffani role and maybe she's learned her lesson.

The only thing I can think is that they were told before the quickfire challenge about the timeframe, and editing made it look differently. But still. They did a dame fine job given what they were working with.


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Hey now, leave my Dave alone!!  :wink:  He didn't cry once this evening... I was very proud!  :smile:  (I just can't help it... he may not be the "top chef," but I like him, I really like him!)

I like Dave a lot, too, but until he acquires more well-deserved confidence in himself, he's not going to have the ability to lead a kitchen. He showed us that he is definitely competent and experienced. To earn the Top Chef title, though, he needs a thicker skin. And I did see him rubbing his eyes a couple of times. . . :huh:

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I hated that wedding challenge.

I did too... I thought it kind of made for an impossible challenge and a boring episode.


"Many people believe the names of In 'n Out and Steak 'n Shake perfectly describe the contrast in bedroom techniques between the coast and the heartland." ~Roger Ebert

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And I think we should remember that this is TV.  Stephen is being kept around for the purpose of creating tension and bringing back viewers.  If this final contest were between Dave, Lee Ann, and Harold, how exciting would it be?  Not very --many of us would be content seeing any of the three win.  We're tuning in, gang, because we're either pro-Steven or anti-Steven.  And that's the way the show's constructed.  If it were purely a contest, not a televised contest, I think other decisions would have been made, and for other reasons.

Yeah, but I think Tiffany can be equally un-likeable (personality-wise,) personally!

Ugh! Tiffany! Her horrible comments about not pandering to ten year olds--I want her to cook for my ten year old--Stilton is his favorite cheese; he loves steak and kidney pie, and sushi is a favorite treat.

What she going to do if some hot shot celebrity brings their kid to her restaurant and requests a cheeseburger? Will she pander to Jet Travolta (but not to some far more deserving kids at a Boys and Girls Club)? :wink:


S. Cue

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Y'know, after this week's show was over, I realized it was not fun to watch. I just felt bad for pretty much everyone: the Scotts, who were clearly excited by the menu at first but rather sad when looking back at the end; Leeann, who was upset by her failure to produce the menu she pitched (due in part to her own fault as well as lots of other things); the other chefs, who knew they didn't do as well food-wise as they could/should have and were tired out of their gourds mentally and physically; and the guests, some of whom had less-than-great meals.

I do think the judges seemed to have high expectations of what the food/experience should be, given the restrictions and rules placed on the chefs. Basically, it seemed like the chefs were almost set up to fail - they weren't told of the 16hour deadline before planning menus (time would have been a huge consideration when it came to complexity); they weren't allowed to source premium ingredients; they were given only one hour to shop; they felt like they had to execute the menu chosen by the Scotts with few changes... I bet if they did swap out the salmon for a fresher fish, the judges would have called 'em on the carpet for not producing the menu the clients approved.

That said, Steven was the right choice to go, although I don't think Leeann reined him very well - especially since she experienced his FOH attitude in the previous challenge. I'm sure the hotel had a service captain or manager or someone that would take care of service instruction; I'm sure they've done a zillion other wedding and banquets and know what they're doing! Steven should have been in the kitchen, at least washing and de-stickering the Chinese spoons if nothing else. Interesting that the wedding planner commented on the lovely "sweeping" service, but according to Tom's blog on the Bravo site, that was only done for the head table - not for the other tables. Yeesh.

And the chefs must have been really tired not to snap at the wedding planner when she talked about how her clients always expect excellent food and accept no less... somehow, I'm guessing her caterers have more than 17 hours to plan, source, and cook the meals for her events. Then again, maybe it was edited out :wink:

For being thrown together the way it was, the cake did look pretty good with the orchids, though. :wub:

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I thought the guest judge - the wedding planner - was useless.

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I agree about this particular challenge. It really sucked. When I realized the chefs were going to be up all night, it made my stomach hurt.

I wonder if the Scotts knew the ingredients were coming from the grocery store, and would not be of a quality they could expect if they went to a "real" caterer/wedding planner. I wonder if they knew their chefs were going to be given a nearly impossible task, that was set up to create challenges that other caterers would not have --and that the situation was almost guaranteed to create a less-than-desirable result. I feel like they were taken advantage of, on what should have been a very special day for them. Shame on Colicchio et al. I doubt Colicchio would try to serve his customers in this manner. So why did he participate in such a fiasco now? It lacks professionalism. I've lost some respect for the man. A customer is a customer, whether they're in a four-star restaurant, or participating in what's supposed to be a fun TV show.

This ain't reality TV. It's fiasco TV. :angry:

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I thought the guest judge - the wedding planner - was useless.

I thought it was a bit ironic that she made what was essentially the only positive comment about the entire reception -- praising the "sweeping" of the room -- and that Stephen, who conceived it was nixxed.

That said, he clearly abdicated the kitchen too frequently to have been considered a "Top Chef."

=R=


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After reading the comments posted by StephMac and jgm upthread about the wedding challenge--great recaps from both of you BTW--and also because I managed to miss this episode (I'll have to catch the rerun at some point), I decided to check out Colicchio's blog on this episode. I cannot emphasize enough how thoroughly disgusted and appalled I am by his comments which included:

The only fresh salmon was the farmed stuff – bland and uninspiring – but he (Harold) bought it, opting for fresh over frozen. But why didn't he and Lee Anne cruise the fishmonger and choose something both fresh and flavorful, and then rewrite the dish?

If they were indeed given only one hour to purchase the ingredients, how the Hell were they supposed to "source" the salmon? Does anyone have any idea on how much time they had between creating the menu and making the trip to the supermarket?

Frankly, with five talented, capable people on board, and a smart, focused leader like Lee Anne, they should have divvied up the shopping and then returned to the kitchen that night to remove food from their packages, prep vegetables, clean fish and meat, etc. In other words get everything set up and ready to go. Then they should have broken out the cake mix and made the cake, wrapping the individual layers tightly to maintain freshness.

And then they should have gone home and slept for 5 hours.

Okay someone has already asked the question which begs to be asked again: WHAT THE HELL WAS COLICCHIO SMOKING? Dude, put the pipe down for goodness' sake and check into the nearest rehab! What professional caterers that he knows of actually prepare for a reception for 100 people in this manner? And as for the wedding cake, which from the photo I saw on the Top Chef website, I thought it looked pretty damned good given that none of these people are pastry chefs. Also, isn't the wedding cake usually prepared by a professional bakery and not the caterers?

For me the moment of truth came when I asked Scott (or was it Scott?) which part of the meal he loved and he couldn't answer. In other words, the meal was just a string of mediocre dishes..........................................................  I felt personally let down – even embarrassed – because I had traversed the room promising a great meal, and the chefs didn't deliver. I held every one of them responsible.

Well for me the moment of truth would be that anyone would do this to a "friend" on his special day. For someone of the supposed experience of Mr. Colicchio to promise a great meal given the absurd limitations HE imposed on the chefs is beyond ludicrous. When I first heard about this particular challenge, I really couldn't fathom that he and his cohorts meant that this was going to be a real reception, for a friend no less. I wonder if Scott had any idea that he and his guests were going to the butts of a truly bad reality tv joke? Mr. Colicchio, how tacky, low class and sad.

Colicchio's Wedding Reception Comments


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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I wonder if the Scotts knew the ingredients were coming from the grocery store, and would not be of a quality they could expect if they went to a "real" caterer/wedding planner.  I wonder if they knew their chefs were going to be given a nearly impossible task, that was set up to create challenges that other caterers would not have --and that the situation was almost guaranteed to create a less-than-desirable result.  I feel like they were taken advantage of, on what should have been a very special day for them. 

Does anyone know if the Scotts really paid for this reception or if it was given to them by Bravo in exchange for the reception being used for the TV show? I think it's highly unlikely they would have forked over $3,000 for a reality cooking show stunt.


 

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