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Fukui San

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  1. Rewatching the episode. Kudos to the editors for slyly including the comment about Brian Voltaggio's dish "There were two sauces on the plate and they worked very well together" as a prelude to Malarkey's meltdown over diners mixing together two sauces WHICH WERE ACTUALLY TOUCHING EACH OTHER ON THE PLATE.
  2. Last time they did airplane food in a challenge, they made the point that taste buds are deadened a bit in elevation, which wasn't mentioned this time.
  3. Wouldn't Malarkey-related shenanigans just be more Malarkey by definition?
  4. Fukui San

    NFL Thread

    Let's be honest. Odds are that the Tom Brady documentary will be less like The Last Dance and more like a TB12 infomercial with football in the background.
  5. Fukui San

    The NBA

    I think Charles Oakley is the one who still seems like a buddy.
  6. I too do not remember any instance of a server simply bringing a Top Chef dish to someone else's table other than in Restaurant Wars for which effed up service is par for the course. There's first time for everything. I think Tom over the years has articulated the folly of doing duos and trios. You're essentially competing against yourself and if one part is better than the other, the judges will ask "Well, why even do the bad part?" The mixing thing is a bit of a new issue. Sometimes people do things "wrong". But if they don't taste good together why plate them together? Another thing I saw more of this episode than I can ever remember: Rubbernecking patrons! The people sitting behind the judging table during Malarkey's service couldn't help turning their heads back to see what was on camera. I imagine these had to be real patrons because extras you could instruct to mind their own business. I'm glad that no matter what happens from here on out, Stephanie has had a season to be proud of. I never knew about this restaurant in which dozens of big names wandered in and out, Zelig like.
  7. I read a Japanese food manga (graphic novel series) called Oishinbo. The plot is that there's a food rivalry between a journalist and his food overbearing scholar father involving two rival newspapers competing in a series of cooking battles that spans years. (This ties into the episode. Bear with me.) The battles would be who can cook the better salmon dish, the better rice dish, etc. The outcome would usually hinge on some minute detail about the consideration and care put into the dish. For example, one battle involved the father character saying that his old non-foodie friend once cooked a simple clams with rice dish that is better than anything his foodie son would be able to cook, which turned into a challenge. The son spared no expense to get the best clams and rice and such and made a great dish, but then the father's humble friend made a dish that was better from cheaper ingredients. The secret being that the friend painstakingly sorted through each clam and grain of rice to remove any that were imperfect to radically improve the end result. The documentary Jiro Dreams of Sushi about the first sushi place to get a Michelin star shows the same mindset in a nonfiction setting. It's not that the chef is inventing new cuisines and techniques or that he's lavishly throwing delicacies at his patrons (this is a hole in the wall literally in a subway station), he's showing ultimate care and consideration matching food to his patrons. At one point he explains that he cuts a slice of fish a few millimeters thicker for the person with the bigger appetite, and the notices when a patron is left handed and places the dish to that person's left hand side. It's observation, knowledge, judgement, effort, and skill more than inspiration and innovation. I think the challenge actually did an excellent job in presenting this foreign mindset and that the chefs were game to the challenge. Every course conceptually fit within the parameters well enough, to my knowledge. I compare that again to the ill-fated All Stars dim sum challenge in which I would straightaway eliminate 1/3 of the dishes conceptually as inappropriate. I think the actual cooking facilities turned out to be a bigger obstacle than the Kaiseki parameters. Having to McGyver a grill sunk Karen (who couldn't choose not to grill), and having to rely on an unfamiliar steamer adversely affected Melissa. I think that's my only complaint about the challenge setup, that they weren't provided the specific equipment to do their required techniques.
  8. Some of you haven't watched dozens of episodes of original Iron Chef Japan and it shows. Just kidding. I haven't had Kaiseki myself, but I'm sure it'd be incredibly tasty to even skeptical diners. Japanese cuisine has it's own set of rules that sets it apart, like putting square foods in round containers and round food in square containers, having inedible but natural decorations on the plate, etc. I'm glad that the chefs are sometimes challenged to do something different and specific and that they seem to have risen to the occasion, unlike, say, the dim sum challenge in All Stars 1.
  9. Fukui San

    NFL Thread

    Don't worry. I'll be sure to give an exhaustive point by point recap of this series here when it airs.
  10. Well, I'm moving to California this summer, pandemic willing, so this is good info to know.
  11. It literally never crossed my mind that Kevin's "Land of Fruit and Nuts" comment was anything but referring to California's agriculture sector, which produces some ungodly percentage of the nation's output. Like, more than half.
  12. After Kevin beat Karen, they brought in all five active chefs and said "If Kevin can beat 2 out of 3 in a head to head matchup, he's back in." He did.
  13. I did appreciate? I guess? Kevin copping to "loosely interpreting" food from other cultures to inspire his dishes.
  14. The Japanese are... a little intense about knife skills.
  15. Gregory has bad eyesight but makes up for it with other senses. So, he's Daredevil? You're going to the Olympics in Tokyo! Well, I got some bad news for you guys... I think all of those athletes are retired from Olympic competition, but I could be wrong. Good of Melissa to assign everyone their best course. Remember Spike trying to sabotage everyone every time he had the advantage of choosing and it always backfiring in his face? Good times. One thing that occurred to me while watching Last Chance Kitchen (no spoilers). I don't remember seeing one Sous Vide or foam this season. But liquid nitrogen ice cream is in. How have culinary trends changed.
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