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KristiB50

Bravo's Top Chef Season 2

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Would the walk in have saved him from condensation on the cold capsules at plate time? I honestly don't know.

The walk-in is the coolest spot (obviously) but not necessarily the least humid. Isomalt is pretty sturdy but not indestructable. It loses shape like a tuile in slight humidity.

The guys had 1 hour for service, anyway- taking time to work in a closed fridge wouldn't have been wise. Anyway, there's no winning for Marcel. Had he gone to work on it he would have been accused of not keeping an eye on his sous.

I'm surprised Marcel didn't have any Silica with him in that kit- he could have possibly made the spheres and stored them with that.

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I guess I don't understand why everyone slams Ilan for falling back on the stuff he knows from Casa Mono and praises Marcel for his creativity. Isn't he just as guilty for falling back on foams and other molecular gastronomy devices? It's not as if he invented isomalt. It seemed to me that he planned his meals around techniques, not around the food. That doesn't seem very inspired to me.

I agree that both Ilan and Marcel had trouble thinking beyond what they knew and were comfortable with. That's why Sam should have won... he approached each challenge with no pre-conceived notions about what he should make... he let the challenge and his ingredients decide.

Even though I despised Marcel the whole time, in the end I was actually cheering for him over Ilan. Ilan is the James Frey of cooking! No originality at all!


Edited by fischwlu (log)

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The walk-in is the coolest spot (obviously) but not necessarily the least humid.

In Hawaii the walk-in is probably both the coolest and least humid. One component of air conditioning is removing the humidity in the air (which is why all a/c systems have condensate drains). This is also why things tend to dry out in the refrigerator.

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I guess I don't understand why everyone slams Ilan for falling back on the stuff he knows from Casa Mono and praises Marcel for his creativity. Isn't he just as guilty for falling back on foams and other molecular gastronomy devices? It's not as if he invented isomalt. It seemed to me that he planned his meals around techniques, not around the food. That doesn't seem very inspired to me.

I agree that both Ilan and Marcel had trouble thinking beyond what they knew and were comfortable with. That's why Sam should have won... he approached each challenge with no pre-conceived notions about what he should make... he let the challenge and his ingredients decide.

Even though I despised Marcel the whole time, in the end I was actually cheering for him over Ilan. Ilan is the James Frey of cooking! No originality at all!

I think it is the difference between using baking soda because it is called for in a recipe, or using the baking soda for something else because you understand what the tool does.

Both have a solid background. Marcel and Ilan were contemporaries at CIA, so both have the fundamentals or they wouldn't have walked out of the door.

Sam is going to do very good things. He lost out to Ilan for a reason, although I am having trouble wrapping my brain around it even now.

Oh well, you win Bravo. It just sort of tickles me that Bravo has a more widely viewed "food" show than Food Network.

I do like snark from a distance.

:biggrin:

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Apropos of nothing, did Padma look seriously stoned or drunk to anyone else this time around? The way she picked her plate up and was all staring at it from eye level was bizarre.


"d00d where r u???"

"im in ur kichen cookin ur f00dz!"

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Andy Dehnart of realityblurred.com offers an insightful take on TC2 at msnbc.com:

More disturbing was the way Ilan appeared to revel in his bullying of Marcel, and the way the editing of the show worked hard to support Ilan's thesis that Marcel deserved what he received. Compared to Harold Dieterle, the affable, pleasant and talented Season One winner, Ilan's behavior was often disgraceful . . .
The defining moment of the season came a few weeks ago when some of the remaining five competitors decided, after a night of drinking, to shave their own heads, and then shave Marcel's. At least, that's what viewers saw. After Ilan and Elia shaved their heads, Cliff woke Marcel, and as Ilan cheered him on, wrestled Marcel to the ground and held him in a headlock. As a result, Cliff was sent home for violating the show's rules.

That wasn't quite what happened, however. Careful viewers noticed that, in one of those scenes, Elia still had all of her hair, and was on the floor laughing as Marcel angrily stormed off. In other words, she and Ilan shaved their heads only after their attempted hazing of Marcel went awry. Editing the scene out of order seemed designed to protect the show's integrity, which was waning episode by episode as interpersonal conflict took over.

'Top Chef' fails the taste test

=R=


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

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I, for one, was glad to see Ilan win. Marcel is very, very immature and is not a well rounded chef by any stretch of the imagination. Did anyone see Marcel in the post-show interviews on the Bravo website? Marcel sat there like someone who was trying to be Mr. Bad***. He was talking and acting the same way. Marcel is not at all comfortable with who he is. He always puts on a front acting like someone he is not. The boy need to grow up. This is part of the reason Marcel did not win. Marcel did not win because:

1. He is very immature (not that Ilan is not a bit immature himself, but he is nowhere near Marcel)

2. He has no idea who he really is.

3. He has no people skills.

4. He shot himself in the foot with all the other chefs because of his arrogance and his immature attitudes. All the chefs seriously disliked him. He was not smart because if you are hated by all the chefs and you make it to the end, they are not going to go the extra mile to help you.

5. He needs to learn how to run a kitchen. The focus of an executive chef is just as much on the kitchen as it is on the food.

Don't get me wrong. Marcel is very creative and has a great love and vision for food. He does have a passion. I actually think his passion is much stronger than Ilan's passion. However, he really needs to grow up and will never make anything of himself until he does. He also needs to learn that chefs don't make food for themselves, they make it for others. Once he loses that "it's all about me" attitude, he will be a great chef. If he adopts good attitudes and humbles himself, he will be a much greater chef than Ilan will ever be.

That's just my 2 cents.


--- KensethFan

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As much as I loved Marcel and thought that Ilan was a complete and utter weenie, as soon as the judges started talking about "giving it to the one that was most ready right now" I knew it had to go to Ilan. Now, whether or not that should have been the deciding criteria is debatable, but Ilan definitely has more of the skills that would be needed to be a "top chef." Top Chef of a totally derivative restaurant, probably, but Marcel does need to get more comfortable in his own skin before he's ready for that role.


Tammy's Tastings

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eGullet Foodblogs #1 and #2
Dinner for 40

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The walk-in is the coolest spot (obviously) but not necessarily the least humid. Isomalt is pretty sturdy but not indestructable. It loses shape like a tuile in slight humidity.

In part that is how refrigerators work, by removing moisture from the environment. Hence the drip pans on the bottom of home units and a hose leading to a drain on commercial units.

This is why some produce wilts if not stored in an airtight package. As to the condensation issue I don’t think it would have been a factor since he would not have been in there long enough for the cold to be a factor.

I agree that both sides had some issues like Marcel not inventorying his Mes before they left or ideally the night prep was finished. I am glad Marcel lost I just think his arrogance got in the way. The whole Master Cook bit was just too stupid for words.

It is not enough to copy someone else’s technique; you also should understand how it works. Like in one of the earlier episodes where he waxes poetic about needing a temperature controlled bat, Chef C retorts that it is not needed to do Sous vide.


Edited by WHT (log)

Living hard will take its toll...

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PS, I think the right person won even if I don't agree with the reasons.


Edited by WHT (log)

Living hard will take its toll...

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In part that is how refrigerators work, by removing moisture from the environment. Hence the drip pans on the bottom of home units and a hose leading to a drain on commercial units.

I agree that both sides had some issues like Marcel not inventorying his Mes before they left or ideally the night prep was finished. I am glad Marcel lost I just think his arrogance got in the way. The whole Master Cook bit was just too stupid for words.

Okay now I just feel like a douche because every walk-in I've known has been grossly dank and wet. :sad:

And not rehash this, but what's wrong with calling himself a master cook? Look at any job listing for a Vegas megarestaurant. Master cook is what it's called. Blame the folks for thinking that its anything more than what it is. (Though I feel getting any Marcel hater to see things differently is pointless.)


Edited by gingersweetiepie (log)

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Elia admitted that they shaved their heads afterwards on her Chow.com interview.  She may well have not known about the plan until Cliff attacked Marcel, but that's not really relevant anymore.

I listened to some of the Chow.com interviews. Very interesting and entertaining -- Sam and Elia are thinking about starting a restaurant together, which I think could be a great success if they can pull off the logistics before their 15 minutes are up. Sam and Mike also came up with a great challenge for TC3: catch your own food and cook it. How cool would that be? :smile:

P.S. Mikey's interview was hilarious. He talked about the quack of a dentist who extracted his wisdom tooth. I burst out laughing several times while listening to it at work.

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  Sam and Mike also came up with a great challenge for TC3: catch your own food and cook it. How cool would that be?  :smile:

Perhaps far too cool for words. How long would some of the shrinking violets have lasted if they had had to kill, gut, de-feather and butcher a turkey for "Thanksgiving?"


This whole love/hate thing would be a lot easier if it was just hate.

Bring me your finest food, stuffed with your second finest!

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You know, what makes me really sad is if this whole interpersonal childish absurd infighting stupidity hadn't happened, we might have had a final where Sam and Cliff were competing for the title, and THEN we might have seen a show that was truly about who could put together better food.

Sigh.


Cooking and writing and writing about cooking at the SIMMER blog

Pop culture commentary at Intrepid Media

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Today I read that Ilan worked as a line cook at Tom Colicchio's restaurant!

Very disappointing that this was not addressed on the show, esp. when contrasted with the explicit disclaimer staged for the much less worrisome connection cheftestant Mike had with TGI Friday's.

Canned eels. Pfui.


Priscilla

Writer, cook, & c. ● #TacoFriday observant ● Twitter Instagram

 

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Today I read that Ilan worked as a line cook at Tom Colicchio's restaurant!

Very disappointing that this was not addressed on the show, esp. when contrasted with the explicit disclaimer staged for the much less worrisome connection cheftestant Mike had with TGI Friday's.

It was adressed, albeit briefly. Ironically, as I understand it, Ilan was fired from Craft because he couldn't get along with the Chef de Cuisine.


Sometimes When You Are Right, You Can Still Be Wrong. ~De La Vega

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Do you remember where this was covered?

In his winner's interview on the Food & Wine website, Ilan says he didn't get along with the chef at Craft and was fired, but that today they are "good friends." Or similar.


Priscilla

Writer, cook, & c. ● #TacoFriday observant ● Twitter Instagram

 

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Do you remember where this was covered?

In his winner's interview on the Food & Wine website, Ilan says he didn't get along with the chef at Craft and was fired, but that today they are "good friends."  Or similar.

I don't recall when I heard it, sorry.

I also didn't see the F&W thing, but Ilan is such a bullshit artist I think I'd only take the other guy's word for it.


Sometimes When You Are Right, You Can Still Be Wrong. ~De La Vega

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PS, I think the right person won even if I don't agree with the reasons.

I liked the way the show ended, either menu looked to be worthy of a major fine dining restaurant. I would pay for either one.

I would LOVE to see Ilan compete on Iron Chef America...if Top Chef were on the Food Network I bet we'd see that.


Edited by Elrushbo (log)

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I don't know that I'd pay for canned eels on a menu when he had the

bounty of Hawaii at his hands with no budget whatsoever.


"You can't miss with a ham 'n' egger......"

Ervin D. Williams 9/1/1921 - 6/8/2004

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Okay now I just feel like a douche because every walk-in I've known has been grossly dank and wet.  :sad: 

And not rehash this, but what's wrong with calling himself a master cook?  Look at any job listing for a Vegas megarestaurant.  Master cook is what it's called.  Blame the folks for thinking that its anything more than what it is.  (Though I feel getting any Marcel hater to see things differently is pointless.)

To hate a TV actor is ridiculous. If I where in a position looking for someone to work in food development he would be on my short list. In order to hate someone you have to have a personal and emotional connection, which does not exit; it’s just a show. We both know if we got to see the raw footage we would be bored out of our skulls.

The master cook thing is about inflection and inference and what he tries to make of it. He tries to infer that it is something more than it is. Giving the allusion that it may be a step under The CIA Master Chef program. To hear him say it is worlds away from asking some dude in a bar what he does and have him answer (master chef over at MGM.) delivered in a flat dry tone punctuated by a sip of beer.

I have enough licenses, certifications, permits, attaboys and awards from over the years to make an extensive and maybe impressive display. Bag that as some are so unrelated to the average situation. What good is talking computer certs or sales awards if you are looking to be a line cook? But my food service sanitation license and having taken certain courses may be enough to seal the deal. Back when I was with Tandy they had all kinds of interesting titles that I could use. My cards only said one of two things; Sales Rep. or manager.

I too have been in some real bad walk-ins and I know what you are talking about, they are usually the result of improper maintenance and located in smaller places than a four star hotel. The salad course was his downfall either with or without his encapsulation. He did some interesting thing in some of the shows but as pointed out by others that it is more show than substance. Than again it is o n l y a reality show.


Living hard will take its toll...

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I don't know that I'd pay for canned eels on a menu when he had the

bounty of Hawaii at his hands with no budget whatsoever.

Yeah...I'd have picked Marcel's menu. I'm suprised it turned out the way it did, sounded like the judges were complaining about the eel thing and Ilan doing what was safe.

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This season was a wash. However, I will be hopeful that TC3 brings stronger and more mature chefs. Kinda like Project Runway. Season two contestants were forgetable and the winner made dresses which reminded me of my worst bridesmaid debacle. She was no Jay, and Ilan is no Harold. Or Tiffany. Or LeAnn.

Only Sam, and perhaps Cliff, could stand shoulder to shoulder with Harold.

Hope springs eternal for the next season. Let's see some talent!


Edited by monavano (log)

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Harold carried himself with dignity and respect. Which was seriously lacking in season two.


Robert R

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