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S17.E02: The Jonathan Gold Standard

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23 hours ago, rehoboth said:

I can't get passed scallops and cooked cabbage paired together.  Did Eric replace duck with scallops?  Did he explain the thinking process there?  Every time they came up on the screen, I involuntarily went ewww.

I wonder why Eric didn't go with pork after Lisa grabbed all the duck?  Maybe it's not too African but nothing goes better with braised red cabbage.  I also want to note that Lisa has not changed one bit.

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3 hours ago, susannot said:

I also want to note that Lisa has not changed one bit.

I think she may have finally taken a bath, so that's a change, I guess.

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Ok episode-I like these chef-testants (other than Lisa), but I did not need to see 20 minutes of them driving around in their BMWs and eating at these great restaurants. With so much time spent on that, especially with sooooo many people still in, there was not enough time to focus on the dishes or what went into it. We saw Karyn make dumplings, but I had no idea what she did with the lamb? I still dont know what LeeAnne or Gregory did....or how they did it. Yes, I know that it is a result of it being early in the season, but I would have preferred more time on the dishes they made and not on the Indian restaurant or the taco truck etc.....

I would love to know how quickly the judges start talking about the dishes in a setting like this-are they down to 3 best and 3 worst by the time they get out of the car....or should I say BMW. The bottom three was probably set before they pulled away from the curb.

By the way....what time did these guys eat all these meals. Looks like it was all before lunch and that the restaurants all opened just to serve them. Doesn't suck!

Thrilled that Yukon won the challenge, particularly after all he has been through. I am enjoying his increased confidence which comes up to the edge of cockiness, but doesn't cross over.

And, it is clear to see that Kevin and Bryan V and probably Gregory are not even breaking a sweat yet in coming up with and creating dishes. They are not taking the easy way out and just trying to survive and it feels like they will keep pushing it all the way through the season.

Edited by AriAu
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On 3/27/2020 at 10:42 AM, carrps said:

Did the show mention that there's a movie called City of Gold about him?

Yes!  It's a lovely documentary, well worth the viewing.   It was lovely of TC to devote a challenge to him.

I'm back in full watch mode after using the last couple of seasons as just background noise and not caring much about who won or lost.  So far I'd like to see any combo of Gregory, Kevin, Brian V and Nini make it to the end.  I really didn't need to see Jen again, or Malarkey.  

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I liked this episode a lot. It was nice to see everyone being respectful to everyone, as I've heard that some people were jerks on their seasons. Here, all seem very friendly and supportive.

Comment depth ranges:

1) Eric has the most beautiful skin I've ever seen. Gorgeous man. I didn't understand the issue with the duck. He asked for duck breasts, they didn't have them, then the androgynous person asked for whole duck and got them, and Eric was mad. Don't get that. Was he mad that he didn't improvise and/or ask about more cuts of duck? That's his fault. 

2) Angelo went from being a hottie on his season that I watched to elderly. What the heck? He talks, walks, and acts like he is 85 years old. Did he just take massive amounts  of cocaine? His mind seems gone.

3) Stephanie's thing sounded good. The only Padma wanted was a small dab of something tart. The other judge was ready to advocate for Angelo's tuna, like he tortured it. That was the harshest comment I've ever heard on this show. It seemed clear he was gone. Padma knows Angela and has probably had sex with  him, so she was defending him. But I'm jaded cuz I know the Top Chef people all sleep with each other (I used to date one).

4) Angelo and Joe were the right people to leave in the past. I think that some of the older people will be up next. Jen Carrol is still working as a chef, she has a chef job and still hustles (drug and alcohol problems, ahem...). Bryan V. I don't think is really ever cooking that much, he's just a business person now. 

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8 hours ago, seltzer3 said:

From what I remembered Jen was really gracious in her first season's elimination. 

What I will always remember about Jen is her masterful putdown of Mike Isabella in the Las Vegas season.  I think it was in the 2nd episode before a lot of the chefs got to know one another.  It was a team challenge and I believe Jen won immunity in the QF so technically she didn't have to cook.  Mike suggested she act as (some French kitchen title I don't remember) because he wanted her out of the way, and he obviously figured that as a woman she'd just listen to him and take a subservient role. But she said "OK, you want me to be that, I'll be that, but I'm going to interpret that job my way".  And instead of sitting back she was down in the weeds with the chefs making sure every dish that went out met her requirements.  She was a tiger.

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1 hour ago, bravofan27 said:

2) Angelo went from being a hottie on his season that I watched to elderly. What the heck? He talks, walks, and acts like he is 85 years old. Did he just take massive amounts  of cocaine? His mind seems gone.

His kid has had health issues, pretty serious it sounds like, all the stress probably aged him.

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Is lee ann trying to get eliminated?   It's not just that she did cheese and fish but she obviously felt like she should acknowledge it to everyone to make sure they knew she was aware of the unlikely pairing.

How many jumpsuits does Nini own in those wild colors?  I like that she has a look but by the time you put your chef's jacket on doesn't that make going to the bathroom a PITA?

Padma's white dress with her nipples showing thru her dress was all kinds of distracting for the entire episode.   Gail looks like she's getting younger.  She's a good quiet foil but not real compelling as a judge.  Tom was crabby but he said he was under the weather so that explained a lot.  Ruth was the perfect judge....she had clear opinions both ways which made for good TV.

Wish they would have shown more of Kevin's cook.   How the terrine was turned into a deep fry and then the ratio for the apple butter.

Jen is getting the softer edit for sure this season.

Malarkey attempting to just tell people the dish is good so there is no room for actual judgement lol.   Nice try Malarkey!   The splatter plate didn't look appetizing.

Didn't realize Kevin was so sick.  Good for him to have health redemption.  His season was so hard.

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Oh yeah, whoever Gail went to does excellent work.

I was also happy that Nini did well. Looking forward to what she’ll do, as a victim of Restaurant Week, she left too early in her season.

Edited by buttersister
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I love Gail so it's a bonus that she's back on top of it being an All Stars season. Yes I'm still fangirling that it's All Stars.

I think Stephanie's dish was just "meh" whereas it sounded like the judges found Angelo's broth plain offensive.

The top dishes all looked yummy but I would have loved to eat Bryan's dish the most. It looked really yummy and I love meat 😋

Can someone tell me what matzo ball soup tastes like? Is the ball/dumpling very wet and squishy? Is it an acquired taste or easy to eat? Aussie here so heard of it but have never tasted it and probably won't ever get a chance to.

 

Edited by Mellowyellow
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5 minutes ago, Mellowyellow said:

Can someone tell me what matzo ball soup tastes like?

I've made it a few times (I'm not Jewish so probably don't know exactly what the matzo ball *should* taste like). It's a nice soft dough ball-- similar in some ways to a regular flour dumpling like in pork and sour kraut with dumplings (which is something my Pennsylvania farm grandparents would make-- that may not help you much either!) It mostly tastes of the broth it's cooked in. Which I imagine is why the massa ball intrigued the judges, since corn meal has a more pronounced taste.

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The thing with Eric's food is that the dishes that don't work all sound (from this episode and his last season) to have technical issues that get described in really unappealing terms. I think they used the phrase gritty this time-and I remember similar criticism last time. I am guessing that a lot of his dishes would benefit from low and slow cooking and the time constraints of TC are not to his benefit. His personality is so great though, of everyone, if he had a cooking show I would tune in! 

Jen-I like her even if sometimes she makes me wince. She's really rough-she knows it. She seems like she can hold it together and then BOOM, it just comes out. I guess I find her genuine and entertaining and....she almost always cooks something I would like to eat. Tom C seems to really like her/they seem on familiar terms. I wonder if that is part of the issue, too-that sometimes he treats her as a peer and on this show it's a different relationship and that ratchets up her anger.

Unpopular opinions. I love both Brian M and Bryan V. I wish the judges were not so down on Brian M-he has such a good attitude and yes-he's a kitchen sinker, but his food looks delicious and pretty. Bryan V just seems sweet to me. Maybe the contrast with his brother. His food also always looks good. 

LeAnn I don't get. She is the contestant for me that everyone is like "OH watch out" but I am not sure why yet? Maybe her food just doesn't thrill me. 

 

 

 

 

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54 minutes ago, Heathrowe said:

Bryan V just seems sweet to me. Maybe the contrast with his brother. His food also always looks good. 

 

Bryan V's food does look good and he seems like a solid, stand-up guy. I remember there being a lot of drama in his season involving an older woman chef who was a cancer survivor. Can't remember her name but Eli and Mike Isabella and some of the others were always crapping all over her. Bryan seemed to stay above all the petty bickering and taunting and was friendly with everyone. He was like Switzerland. She was on his team during Restaurant Wars. She made the dessert (a galette) that everyone really liked.

IIRC, his brother ended up winning one of the elimination challenges using Bryan's recipe for the deconstructed buffalo wings. My memory may be fuzzy on that one. 

Edited by wlk68
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2 hours ago, wlk68 said:

Bryan V's food does look good and he seems like a solid, stand-up guy. I remember there being a lot of drama in his season involving an older woman chef who was a cancer survivor. Can't remember her name but Eli and Mike Isabella and some of the others were always crapping all over her. Bryan seemed to stay above all the petty bickering and taunting and was friendly with everyone. He was like Switzerland. She was on his team during Restaurant Wars. She made the dessert (a galette) that everyone really liked.

IIRC, his brother ended up winning one of the elimination challenges using Bryan's recipe for the deconstructed buffalo wings. My memory may be fuzzy on that one. 

Robin was the older woman and while I wanted to like her, she had the personality of a buzz saw. Doesn’t justify Eli and Mike though.  I remember one stew room scene while Robin was a Judge’s Table and Eli was bitching about her, Michael V. kept responding to Eli saying things like, “and then you had sex,” and “because you wanted to have sex with her.” It cracked me up, Michael giving it back to Eli saying the problem was just sexual tension with Robin. Michael V. Later got into it with Robin during Restaurant Wars, but he was totally controlling in team challenges.

I’d liked Bryan V. And he seemed sweet, until the episode when Michael V won 10K as team leader and Michael V wanted to split it with the whole team and Bryan V was a pissy bitch and said Michael V could keep his share, angry because he didn’t win. From that point, I always thought Bryan V was putting on a show.

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My memory of Robin (thanks for the memory jog!) in RW was that she was making Michael V's dessert recipe...and messing it up. Adding unnecessary touches. I was on Michael's side on this one. She was also annoying to me. Through my TV. So, I get the issues. Piling on and being nasty are not the way to handle those issues, though.

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On 3/26/2020 at 11:27 PM, buttersister said:

i was worried for Stephanie until Ruth said Angelo's tuna had died in vain. Ouch.

That was when I literally said out loud, "Bye, Angelo", there's no way he was coming back from a comment like that. 

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23 hours ago, aquarian1 said:

His kid has had health issues, pretty serious it sounds like, all the stress probably aged him.

Didn't Angelo have a serious drug problem for a few years?  (Serous enough that I read about it here.)  That can't have helped. 

For some reason, Angelo now reminds me of Rick Bayless, who is several decades older. 

Edited by Quilt Fairy

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3 hours ago, Fostersmom said:

That was when I literally said out loud, "Bye, Angelo", there's no way he was coming back from a comment like that. 

I half expected a trap door to open beneath him.

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3) Stephanie's thing sounded good. The only Padma wanted was a small dab of something tart. The other judge was ready to advocate for Angelo's tuna, like he tortured it. That was the harshest comment I've ever heard on this show. It seemed clear he was gone. Padma knows Angela and has probably had sex with  him, so she was defending him. But I'm jaded cuz I know the Top Chef people all sleep with each other (I used to date one).

 

Oh, c'mon BravoFan27.  You cannot leave us hanging after a comment like that.  Tell us more.  We want ALL the juicy stuff.

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5 hours ago, carrps said:

My memory of Robin (thanks for the memory jog!) in RW was that she was making Michael V's dessert recipe...and messing it up. Adding unnecessary touches. I was on Michael's side on this one. She was also annoying to me. Through my TV. So, I get the issues. Piling on and being nasty are not the way to handle those issues, though.

My memory is that Robin won a previous challenge with her dessert recipe.  When she ended up on Michael V's team for Restaurant Wars, he wanted to use her recipe (some kind of a pear gallette) and elevate it.  I have always resisted a rewatch of Season 6 because of the way the boys treated Robin.

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On 3/28/2020 at 4:11 PM, AriAu said:

Ok episode-I like these chef-testants (other than Lisa), but I did not need to see 20 minutes of them driving around in their BMWs and eating at these great restaurants. With so much time spent on that, especially with sooooo many people still in, there was not enough time to focus on the dishes or what went into it. We saw Karyn make dumplings, but I had no idea what she did with the lamb? I still dont know what LeeAnne or Gregory did....or how they did it. Yes, I know that it is a result of it being early in the season, but I would have preferred more time on the dishes they made and not on the Indian restaurant or the taco truck etc.....

I feel like you missed the entire point of this episode. This is probably my favorite Top Chef episode of all time.

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On 3/28/2020 at 5:11 PM, AriAu said:

And, it is clear to see that Kevin and Bryan V and probably Gregory are not even breaking a sweat yet in coming up with and creating dishes. They are not taking the easy way out and just trying to survive and it feels like they will keep pushing it all the way through the season.

My dream top 3

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I really liked this episode. After the first episode I wasn't too interested in watching more, but this second episode was the type of episode I like best.  I like episodes where the challenge is not defined detail - create a dish inspired by one of these restaurants - and the chefs can create what they like as long as the inspiration can be seen in the dish. So now I'm looking forward to the next episode!

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On 3/29/2020 at 9:26 AM, Mellowyellow said:

I love Gail so it's a bonus that she's back on top of it being an All Stars season. Yes I'm still fangirling that it's All Stars.

I think Stephanie's dish was just "meh" whereas it sounded like the judges found Angelo's broth plain offensive.

The top dishes all looked yummy but I would have loved to eat Bryan's dish the most. It looked really yummy and I love meat 😋

Can someone tell me what matzo ball soup tastes like? Is the ball/dumpling very wet and squishy? Is it an acquired taste or easy to eat? Aussie here so heard of it but have never tasted it and probably won't ever get a chance to.

 

So a matzo ball is basically matzo meal (ground up matzo, like a bland cracker) usually mixed with egg and sometimes seltzer for fluffiness, and then cooked in chicken soup. It's soft, very flavorful if the broth is flavored properly, and if you like chicken noodle soup you'd like it. It's quite tasty. My guess is that you absolutely can get it in Australia if you went to a deli or restaurant that offers Jewish food. 

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On 3/26/2020 at 10:17 PM, BlackberryJam said:

I started a re-watch of Angelo’s first season and remembered why I loathed him. The peanut butter mousse school lunch team fiasco, skeeving on Tamesha, giving chefs bad advice. Ugh.

This is what I remember as well. And whether the advice given was wanted or unwanted, I thought those that did follow his advice would wind up getting eliminated, leading to rumors that he was deliberately leading folks astray as a game play tactic. Either way, not sad to see him go this early.

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On 3/29/2020 at 6:26 AM, Mellowyellow said:

Can someone tell me what matzo ball soup tastes like? Is the ball/dumpling very wet and squishy? Is it an acquired taste or easy to eat? Aussie here so heard of it but have never tasted it and probably won't ever get a chance to.

 

To expand on what others have said, the better matzo balls use "schmaltz" or chicken fat for the fat component -- you use matzo meal (or grind matzos yourself, as I do), salt, fat, eggs, and a liquid.  This is the part that's somewhat controversial.  If you like light matzo balls, some people use club soda.  I actually use the soup broth itself, since I like them somewhere between dense and fluffy.  I also render the chicken fat with onions, which gives the matzo balls a great taste.

I recently got an induction cook top when I renovated my kitchen, and my old pots won't work on it.  Right now, I sure could go for some matzo ball soup 😞

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There was SO MUCH in this episode, and I still wanted more - more of the cheftestants touring LA, more of the cheftestants cooking, more critiquing of each of their dishes. We often get Quickfire and Elimination dishes that are either glazed over or skipped completely - I cannot comprehend why Bravo will give Project Runway 90 minutes each week that’s almost all chitchat And sewing montages but Top Chef gets whittled down to an hour. 

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