July 30, 2009

Top Chef Masters: A Grotesque Huge Ball … Terrifying

Filed under: Top Chef — Chris @ 10:09 pm

Was it just me, or was this week’s challenge kind of too easy? The chefs weren’t obligated to literally mimic the given dish (i.e., this was not Top Chef New York‘s Le Bernardin challenge), so basically the challenge was to compose a dish given a main protein, 3 or 4 key ingredients, and a general idea of how they should inter-relate. The only chef who seemed to sweat if at all was Art Smith, who for some reason was deathly afraid of having to fry an egg (he seemed to think his failure to separate and whip egg whites in the Quickfire had put him under an hex).

The Critics had to make the classic Top Chef choice: what’s worse, the reasonably well-thought-out dish with the cold, overcooked fish (Suzanne Tracht’s grouper) or the horrendously ill-conceived dish that was at least edible (Art Smith’s lamb Scotch egg)? It always ends the same way: you don’t disrespect a protein and get away with it on Top Chef. You can terrify Gael Greene, but you can’t overcook your fish.

Predictions: From now on I’ll predict the opposite of whatever I think is going to happen. I really thought Suzanne Tracht was going to go the distance. Art Smith is obviously the weakest competitor, so he’ll probably win next week. Hubert Keller, Anita Lo, and Rick Bayless can turn out perfectly prepared, refined, and delicious food without breaking a sweat, so obviously one of them will go home next week. Let’s say Anita Lo, since her performance this week was so outstanding (the highest star total yet, by a star and a half!).


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