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S18.E01: First Impressions

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On 4/1/2021 at 9:02 PM, avecsans said:

So glad my favorite show is back. I learned no names, so I can’t go into specifics. That losing dish looked totally disgusting and I thought he legitimately should have lost.

 I know that Richard Blais thought to himself, “Gee, there will be a lot of contestants and judges on the set.  How can I stand out and make everyone pay attention to me?  I know! I will pile all my hair up on top of my head and look like an  asshole!!! Yay me!!!!”  I cannot stand that man.

Was anybody else expecting a teeny-tiny surfer to come out of the wave on Richard’s head? 
Instant loathing for the guy who worked for Tom; there’s something that reads very entitled frat brat about him. 
Re: Roscoe’s Murky Broth: No broth should be that color unless it contains potpourri. 
No favorites yet, but it is good to see Gregory & Melissa again. 

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33 minutes ago, Pj3422 said:

Instant loathing for the guy who worked for Tom; there’s something that reads very entitled frat brat about him. 

He definitely is using that as a bragging point, which is an immediate turnoff. 

Loved seeing Gregory (aka Urkel) in the first segment!  He's such a delightful presence.

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On 4/2/2021 at 11:24 AM, meep.meep said:

Whoever in production chose the font and color to display the contestant's names should be fired immediately.

Agreed!!  I hope they change up the background for the talking heads at some point.  The yellow/orange of the person's name was right over the yellow/green part of the background.  Can't believe someone didn't catch that in the editing.

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14 hours ago, NYCFree said:

Is it possible they have a giant team of judges as a way of getting a paycheck to people who own restaurants that may be closed? Tom Collicchio has been pretty active in trying to help the restaurant industry this past year.

I was thinking that might have had something to do with it. It's probably why they could get all "full" chefs this season, and no sous chefs.

 

12 hours ago, rafibomb said:

I was also thrilled to see Dale, one of my OG favorites.

I always liked Dale, too.

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Have we retired his nickname?  He's no longer Angry Dale?

I rewatched.  I loved the pieces of Roscoe's art that they showed.  They should give him an easel and let him paint what's going on.

I started liking Gabriel who worked for Tom better after listening to the discussion at their hotel about how the Alpine chef had forgotten the pumpkin seeds for the Quick Fire and he immediately claimed that was why they lost.  It was funny.  They really did have the worst combination of ingredients.

Their hotel is a Kimpton - they always do great things for their customers.

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On 4/2/2021 at 12:19 AM, Maverick said:

 Watching people shop for groceries online and drive thru the pickup line is far less interesting than in store pandemonium and every so slightly more interesting than watching paint dry.

I agree. I mean, I get it, it's an adjustment due to the pandemic. However, the in person shopping usually added a special dynamic element to the challenges: there would be the person who arrived at the market to find they didn't have a key ingredient, or maybe the person ahead of them took it all; or they would see a beautiful ingredient they hadn't thought of before and get inspired; or they would be short money at the register and have to put stuff back. Lol, remember how Eddie Money got his nickname that one year, when he took too much of the team budget for his protein? Ah, good times!

On 4/2/2021 at 1:28 AM, Vermicious Knid said:

Not sure why they couldn't bring in the usual guest judges. These All-Stars have to commit to be in the bubble for at least 6 weeks, they've all got lives, careers, families. Anyone as judges would all be under the same constraints. These were the only ones willing to put their lives on hold?

I'm sure the All-Stars are welcoming the nice pay check and free publicity while their businesses are struggling if not closed all together. I think it's a great idea considering the big name guest judges this season will be doing Zoom calls and unable to taste the food. I'm hoping for a bonus segment about how they are all coping and plans for the future.

On 4/2/2021 at 9:36 AM, roctavia said:

Watched this episode in pieces since I missed the earlier start time (will it always be on early this season?) so missed some of the quickfire and all of the "this is how things are different this year" as far as judges and stuff... but that's okay. I mostly care about the cooking.

I missed the first airing because of the 8pm start time, too. But, I was able to watch the episode in it's entirety on the Bravo app.

3 minutes ago, meep.meep said:

I loved the pieces of Roscoe's art that they showed.  They should give him an easel and let him paint what's going on.

His artwork was gorgeous! Giving me a little Basquiat. I would love to see more of his pieces. I thought it was the kiss of death when he said he cooks to pay the bills though. Poor guy, first out sucks. He handled it very gracefully. Whaa...!? He smokes meats from 3am to 10pm!? When does he sleep? Gail said the meets were amazing.... annd, now I'm hungry.

It was great to have the old gang back. Padma still looking super model stunning, Tom's eyes sparkling with mischief, and I gasped when Gail walked in, in that white dress. They do a great show. It's soo nice to have some normalcy after this crazy year. 

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23 minutes ago, meep.meep said:

They really did have the worst combination of ingredients.

That reminds me of a comment Padma made-- some of them asked for rather pedestrian ingredients -- that they would certainly have in the pantry! Rice vinegar? Butter? 

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1 hour ago, TazDevil said:

Agreed!!  I hope they change up the background for the talking heads at some point.  The yellow/orange of the person's name was right over the yellow/green part of the background.  Can't believe someone didn't catch that in the editing.

I think whoever did the editing forgot to take their Ritalin that morning.

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57 minutes ago, NowVoyager said:

agree. I mean, I get it, it's an adjustment due to the pandemic. However, the in person shopping usually added a special dynamic element to the challenges: there would be the person who arrived at the market to find they didn't have a key ingredient, or maybe the person ahead of them took it all; or they would see a beautiful ingredient they hadn't thought of before and get inspired; or they would be short money at the register and have to put stuff back. Lol, remember how Eddie Money got his nickname that one year, when he took too much of the team budget for his protein? Ah, good times!

Yeah, what happens if the store doesn't have an ingredient on their list?  That was always happening during the shopping trips.

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14 minutes ago, susannot said:

Both chefs have extremely impressive credentials. 

did either of them end up in the top four? I don't think so-- but I agree it will be fun to see more of them.

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On 4/1/2021 at 8:25 PM, Straycat80 said:

Padma seems different, nicer or something. 
 

I've always loved Padma.  Am I the only one?  Is it because she doesn't fawn over everyone and dares to be critical?  RBF?

 

On 4/2/2021 at 12:41 AM, eyelash said:

Why make such a big deal about having the largest kitchen ever due to safety considerations during the pandemic, but then crowd them into a kitchen at a museum for the elimination challenge?

Bravo either needs to get someone in to teach them about measurements/geometry or just give up the whole social distancing schtick.

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Just now, Leeds said:

I've always loved Padma.  Am I the only one?  Is it because she doesn't fawn over everyone and dares to be critical?  RBF?

 

I like her also. Do they hate her because she's beautiful? I think there's a reason she's been there all these years, and it's not just because she's beautiful. She has pithy comments that those of us on the TV side can understand. (Melissa I'm talking to you-- you gave rather vague and "atmospheric" comments this past week.)

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4 hours ago, dleighg said:

That reminds me of a comment Padma made-- some of them asked for rather pedestrian ingredients -- that they would certainly have in the pantry! Rice vinegar? Butter? 

I'm curious if the contestants wrote a list and the producers picked one from that list.  Like there is no way that the one ingredient would be rice vinegar, or just butter.

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39 minutes ago, dleighg said:

I like her also. Do they hate her because she's beautiful? I think there's a reason she's been there all these years, and it's not just because she's beautiful. She has pithy comments that those of us on the TV side can understand. (Melissa I'm talking to you-- you gave rather vague and "atmospheric" comments this past week.)

I will love Melissa forever, whether she speaks "vaguely" or not.  She is my Food Network crush x 1,000.

Edited by Leeds
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what was Roscoe's protein ?

If his specially / expertise is BBQ , he should have made an oven/pressure-cooker version.. Yes - it will be a little different than a meat that smoked all night "in the Pit"  but he could have made a killer sauce and some BBQ side to go with it... BBQ chicken isn't smoked all night, though.

https://www.al.com/life-and-culture/g66l-2019/02/c7245f704c7644/-rodney-scotts-whole-hog-bbq-opens-in-birmingham.html

I like that the chefs wasn't running around whole foods. nice change of pace and no built in drama - like can't find something in store, store didn't have xx, running to check out..

Edited by sATL
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5 hours ago, Cheyanne11 said:

Yeah, what happens if the store doesn't have an ingredient on their list?  That was always happening during the shopping trips.

When I did the online grocery either I could check a box for ok-for-substitutions (which I later learned applied to the whole entire order) or do without. One time the shopper called me, and took pictures which the best choice, which was nice.

The experience taught me something about by myself - I didn't know I was that picky of a grocery shopper. 

Edited by sATL
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nevermind. question answered in a prior thread

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6 hours ago, dleighg said:

That reminds me of a comment Padma made-- some of them asked for rather pedestrian ingredients -- that they would certainly have in the pantry! Rice vinegar? Butter? 

 

1 hour ago, seltzer3 said:

I'm curious if the contestants wrote a list and the producers picked one from that list.  Like there is no way that the one ingredient would be rice vinegar, or just butter.

Based on the snippets I heard, I wonder if what happened was they were asked to name the one thing they can't live without, a crucial component of their cooking. And a couple of them took it literally, and said something like butter. Fine French cuisine guy definitely needs butter! They answered the question rather than playing the game. Others knew to pick something they couldn't live without that the kitchen wouldn't necessarily have, like the plantains and the caul fat.

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I'm so glad this show is back-both because I really enjoy it and that there are few shows that I enjoy being broadcast right now.  

I know that it's been stated several times, but...sheesch Blais, could you be any more obvious in your pursuit of attention?  I get tired of seeing some of the former contestants all over t.v.-syndicated shows, food network (seemingly ALL shows) and continual pop-ups on Top Chef.  There are so many I enjoy and so many I am just so over (not just Blais).  And, as if the hair alone wasn't enough, he HAS to answer Padma's question about if any of the competing chefs were nervous (and he has to pipe up that he's nervous...for them).  Probably the primary reason I am so over him is that he is just everywhere.  Judging, competing, analyzing, etc.  Can't miss him if he never leaves.  But, I secretly smile inside when I see him because I know that whatever he does, no matter how many shows he is on, he will never be the winner of his original season (go Stephanie).

I liked Roscoe-especially after seeing some of his amazing art, but he may have felt that he needed to 'step up' his cooking in the competition and just completely missed the mark.  Oh well.  There are a few others that don't seem up to the talent level, but they, too, may just have been nervous during the first elimination.  

The next person I would be happy to see go is sound effects chef as I just find that annoying and cloying.  And, it makes everyone else have to try to interpret what is happening rather than one just using their words.  It also seems "attention getting" as the focus will be on her and what she means.  Right now she can have a seat next to Blais.  

I will know more names as the show goes on and more people are eliminated.  However, I thought that a LOT of the dishes looked so good!  

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8 hours ago, sATL said:

I guess the preimire wasn't the time and place to pay final respects to Chef Floyd Cardoz, winner of season 3 of Bravo's Top Chef Masters. 

Cardoz died on March 25, 2020, so the show paid tribute to him via a title card last season, at the beginning of Season 17 Episode 2, "The Jonathan Gold Experience" (which was broadcast on March 26, 2020).

Cardoz.thumb.jpg.86d87c3bcbbbfc9ef873f83d0e2718a5.jpg

Edited by Corgi-ears
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18 hours ago, Leeds said:

I've always loved Padma.  Am I the only one?  Is it because she doesn't fawn over everyone and dares to be critical?  RBF?

 

Bravo either needs to get someone in to teach them about measurements/geometry or just give up the whole social distancing schtick.

You're not the only one. I love Padma, so much in fact that I follow her on Instagram. I think she can be offputting to some, but I feel she's genuine and isn't afraid to speak her mind.

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I think they chose the right person to go home, but I think the publicity of being on this show will really be a boost for Roscoe, and his various careers.  

Edited by CrazyInAlabama
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On 4/3/2021 at 9:32 AM, jackjill89 said:

Me too. I know my cheftestants -- especially the end ones. I Googled him and was shocked to learn he came in second on his season! Huh? I still don't remember him. Looked at photos from the season... nothing.  I must have found him completely unremarkable. 

I googled him too!  still nothing.  The invisible chef!

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I don't hate Richard, but one of his mannerisms that really bugs me for whatever reason is when he's at the table and a dish comes out and he immediately dives forward like one of those bobbing-head birds and sticks his nose almost into the dish to smell it.  It's not that he smells it, it's something about the dive.  So when I saw his hair I said "at least he can't bob into the food or his hair will get in it."  But then he had it slicked back at table!  

Yeah, without knowing how he question was worded, I don't think it's quite fair of Padma to say "why did some of you pick the things you know we have?!"   There are some things I'm antsy about if I know we're out of them in the kitchen--and one of them is butter!  

If I had been filling out that questionnaire, though, my suspicion would have been "I know how they do challenges where they make you cook with limited ingredients--they're obviously going to remove everyone's favorites from the pantry--I'll make something up and say I can't live without [insert rare ingredient here]!"  

I've been doing a lot of ordering from Whole Foods for delivery--it's actually the closest to my house!--and I generally pick no substitutions because of how I got some dry apple cake, a dessert I'm not that fond of, in place of some luscious creamy concoction, and some oat milk instead of, I think, heavy cream.  (Yeah, I know they text you, but I'm An Old and suck at checking texts!).  So we were laughing about the potential substitutes for some of the items.  

I liked the sneaky secret door/bookcase at the hotel. 

Love Gregory.  So happy to see him.

Whoever it was who talked about laying off his 30 best friends (or something like that)....so sad.  

 

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On 4/1/2021 at 9:15 PM, heatherchandler said:

I felt bad for Roscoe and his sweating.. some people just get sweaty, especially when nervous

I did too, but the moment he wiped his sweaty face during the quickfire challenge and then dropped the towel back on his workstation I wanted him gone, so I was glad he was eliminated.

Seemed like a nice enough guy, but I get too tense when I see stuff like that on cooking shows (see also: loose long hair, face-touching, double-dipping tasting spoons, and finger-licking).

Oh, god. Blais. Y’all have said everything for me but I completely agree with everyone who wants him to just get off our tvs.

Hi, Gregory! So good to see him!

Top Chef finally comes to my town...and it’s a year when I had no shot at tasting anything. I mean, it would have been a slim chance even without the pandemic, but at least there might have been a chance. Boo. 

I credit Colicchio and Top Chef with the most important thing that has improved my cooking so far: salt, salt, salt. I used to be so scared of over-salting that I hardly used any, and thanks to Tom it has become an automatic thing for me to taste as I go and season liberally.

But I haven’t worked for him or anything...

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I am so thrilled that the show is back that RichieB and his pandemic pompadour didn’t bother me at all.

I have had times when Padma has annoyed me, but mostly, I love her. And Colicchio too. This has been a horrible twelve months for the restaurant industry, and I love that they managed to put this show together and employ so many chefs who had been out of work. 

I don’t think this competition was the right fit for Roscoe. I’m sure his smoked meats are amazing; Gail even said so, which was nice given that he served a bowl of sludge. 

I’m not sure how they do it, but if I were the producers, I would give them around 200 questions about food an inspiration, so they wouldn’t know what I would be using for a challenge. And with this one, “What can’t you live with out?” Could have easily be a challenge of, “You are not going to be allowed to use this ingredient.” 

In my state, restaurants are open with limited seating, so I have been going out. (My career doesn’t let me work from home.) When I do, I tip between 40-50%. I give all my dine-in and carry out patronage to local restaurants, no chains. But wow, do I miss going food adventuring. I hadn’t quite realized how much until I watched this episode.

And yes, I know this is just me, but I wanted someone to cook their chukar (partridge) with pears, because I love a good culinary giggle.

So happy for Sara. Her food looked fantastic. 

(PS to the Columbusites, I went to The 2-1 in Westerville the other day. Skip the buffalo cauliflower, but the butter poached lobster Mac and cheese was excellent.)

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On 4/1/2021 at 10:02 PM, avecsans said:

So glad my favorite show is back. I learned no names, so I can’t go into specifics. That losing dish looked totally disgusting and I thought he legitimately should have lost.

 I know that Richard Blais thought to himself, “Gee, there will be a lot of contestants and judges on the set.  How can I stand out and make everyone pay attention to me?  I know! I will pile all my hair up on top of my head and look like an  asshole!!! Yay me!!!!”  I cannot stand that man.

Great!?  I hope he’s out next but likely will be kept around for drama

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On 4/3/2021 at 5:02 PM, Leeds said:

I've always loved Padma.  Am I the only one?  Is it because she doesn't fawn over everyone and dares to be critical?  

Those are two reasons. Also she’s smart and loves food. Taste the Nation, her limited series, is on Hulu, but the Gullah Geechee episode is on YouTubeand really well done.

Quote

for her quick, confident and disdainful shoot down of “Tom Colicchio garnishes with thyme stems!” with, “Well, that’s his food, not ours.” 👏👏

Good call. I can’t imagine Tom being impressed with that, knowing some guy who used to work for him is cooking.

Also, hi, Kwame! Saw him on a F&W Zoom festival. He was best in show, a knowledgeable and charming communicator.

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Watching the episode again, I noticed that during the prep for the Elimination Challenge, they cut away from Shota as he was about to do the amazing Japanese knife skill that I saw Morimoto do so many times on the various Iron Chef incarnations. As Sasha Graumann was telling him how much she liked his laugh, he had a daikon or some other root vegetable in his hand and he was about to casually cut it into a continuous sheet like in this video because he's a properly trained Japanese chef and that's how they roll.

I hadn't realized the first time around that the dish Roscoe was making was Duck Adobo. Not sure how it went so horrifyingly wrong. Adobo is braising in soy sauce, vinegar, and broth. The ones I've seen boil down the leftover cooking liquid into something more of a sauce than his soup.

It occurs to me that the Elimination Challenge could have been "Now use your ingredient you can't live without with the assigned bird in the Elimination Challenge". However that may have clashed with the blind tasting.

The wording of "ingredient you can't live without" led some chefs to choose the basic stuff they use in everything and others to choose  signature stuff that's kind of showy. You never know what they're going to do with the info, or even if they had other questions in that questionnaire that may pop up later.

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16 hours ago, Jobiska said:

I don't hate Richard, but one of his mannerisms that really bugs me for whatever reason is when he's at the table and a dish comes out and he immediately dives forward like one of those bobbing-head birds and sticks his nose almost into the dish to smell it.  It's not that he smells it, it's something about the dive.  So when I saw his hair I said "at least he can't bob into the food or his hair will get in it." 

One thing that really bug me is how he pronounces "important", it makes my ears bleed.

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On 4/2/2021 at 11:33 PM, gorgy said:

I thinks it's more of them keeping the concept of guest judges but having them able to quarantine. This was filmed in the fall, so keeping as many of the on camera crew gathered in one place so they can be regularly tested was a bigger concern. 

Also, I'm guessing Top Chef alums are under some degree of contract with Bravo/Magic Elves, so it was probably cheaper and easier to contract a bunch of them to be quarantined together for a month over more famous names. 

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One of my biggest pet peeves in cooking shows is when professional chefs, foodies, and cooks who claim that food is their life mispronounce mascarpone adding the letter "r" where there is none (as in "maRscarpone").  I don't know why that one grates on me so much; it just does.  If it's a novice in the kitchen who might have heard the word wrong because they are self taught, I can excuse it, but when it's a professional? Drives me bananas! And I'm not even Italian, so, it doesn't come from a desire to have my language respected or anything like that 😄.

I am glad this show is back.  Agreed with the elimination.  Thought that perhaps the guy with the glazed bird who was on the top (not the one that worked for Tom, the other one) might have won, but we don't get to taste the food, so, I'll trust that the win was well deserved.

Count me in as a person who actually likes Tom C., Gail, and all the guest chefs (yes, including Blais, I think he's just awkward, and people make too much of little things, just my two cents).  I can take or leave Padma, don't love her, don't hate her, just neutral on her.  Then again, I rarely have the level of visceral reactions from watching TV that many other people do.  It's just TV, and when it comes to reality TV, the behind the scenes shenanigans could have a lot to do with what ends up as the finished episode, so I tend to cut people a little slack based on that alone (most of the time, although every once in a while I might lose it too, nobody is perfect). 

Guy that worked for Tom did seem to be a bit too confident and his comment that they should have won because they pulled off a good dish with the worst possible combinations of ingredients was ungracious, I thought.  Even if true, that's the sort of thing best kept to oneself because if said in the wrong tone, at the wrong time and with the wrong words (as it was done here), it comes out as "sore loser".  He didn't try the other team's dish, and they all know that at the end of the day, the best tasting dish is he one that should take the price (provided all other evaluation criteria are the same: presentation, meeting the challenge, etc.).  They were unlucky that they had such difficult ingredients to combine, but, that's the way the cookie crumbles in challenges like these.  Next time something is up to "fate" he might be the lucky one and get better ingredients or some other advantage and I doubt he'd decline a win if that were the case.  So, play with the cards you are dealt, and make the best of it.

I'm excited for this season, pandemic restrictions and all! Show me the food!!

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On 4/1/2021 at 7:45 PM, CSunshine76 said:

As usual, Richard Blaise is a DB with his obnoxious comments and hair.

Dude that worked for Tom? Please stop telling us every time the camera is on you. We get it, you think that means something. Tom will likely be harder on you, so good luck with that bro.

Yeah, he worked my last nerve from the get-go, when he humble bragged to his team that they had to do whatever the way he wanted because "I used to work for Tom and that's how he did it".  In contrast, adored the woman on his team who said something to the effect of "that's not us/we're not working for Tom right now". 

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On 4/2/2021 at 11:56 AM, glitterpussy said:

He just opened a new restaurant here in San Diego, Ember & Rye. I think he is in the kitchen, at least for now. I haven't been yet, but in my opinion his other place here, Juniper & Ivy, got much much better after he stopped cooking there 🙂 When he was there, he was super standoffish and acted like he was above talking to guests and whatnot.  His fast food chicken place next door, The Crack Shack, is OK. 

I did enjoy some of his more out-there dishes because we don't have a lot of that in SD and he comes up with some fun things, but as a person he grates.  The hair last night was absurd. Why does San Diego end up with him AND Malarkey?

My fave so far this season is Sara. She's, like, the epitome of Portland in human form, haha.

Agree on all fronts, although to be fair, I don't think he was in the kitchen at Juniper and Ivy for long. We started going a little while after it opened, but I think he wasn't in the kitchen much even then, and I thought it was really good. Definitely super interesting. Yeah, he's not so interested in interacting with the plebes though. Have not been to Ember & Rye.  I feel a desperate need for Crack Shack now.  So, his food, to me?  Good and interesting.  Malarkey is practically his clone, and why DO we have all the jerks?

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On 4/4/2021 at 4:53 PM, BlackberryJam said:

IPS to the Columbusites, I went to The 2-1 in Westerville the other day. Skip the buffalo cauliflower, but the butter poached lobster Mac and cheese was excellent.)

Hi BlackberryJam!  Are you a Columbusite?  We should get together.  I have not been there and Westerville is a little out of my comfort zone.  Would never order the cauliflower anyway but the lobster mac "n' cheese sounds delicious.  My friends and I are now fully vaccinated so we plan to get together for coffee and bagels in the Short North.  Of all the foods I have been missing, a perfect bagel is # 1.

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I am interested to see the chef who was talking about plaintains . 

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2 hours ago, susannot said:

Hi BlackberryJam!  Are you a Columbusite?  We should get together.  I have not been there and Westerville is a little out of my comfort zone.  Would never order the cauliflower anyway but the lobster mac "n' cheese sounds delicious.  My friends and I are now fully vaccinated so we plan to get together for coffee and bagels in the Short North.  Of all the foods I have been missing, a perfect bagel is # 1.

I was in Westerville for work, although I am an Ohioan! People may mock us for being Midwest hicks, but we are the eighth most populous state, ranked sixth in the number of colleges/universities, including the third largest public university in the US, and a nice ranking in agricultural receipts. Ohio grows/raises a lot of food, providing lots of local meat and produce for restaurants. We get the farmersonly.com ad push for a reason.

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On 4/3/2021 at 1:38 PM, dleighg said:

That reminds me of a comment Padma made-- some of them asked for rather pedestrian ingredients -- that they would certainly have in the pantry! Rice vinegar? Butter? 

I thought it was what ingredient was most important to them?

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18 minutes ago, LennieBriscoe said:

I thought it was what ingredient was most important to them?

I think it was "what could they not cook without," and certainly they could interpret that in many ways. But it does seem that asking for something a bit unusual would make more sense.

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Avishar Barua’s unlikely journey from Ohio State pre-med to ‘Top Chef’ (columbusalive.com)

Interesting article about our Columbus contestant.  His immigrant doctor father insisisted that he become a doctor.  He tried at OSU medical school.  How many times have we seen this with immigrant chefs that long to cook instead of fulfull their parents' dreams for them  I am happy to see them succeed and do what they want in America.

Just now, susannot said:

Avishar Barua’s unlikely journey from Ohio State pre-med to ‘Top Chef’ (columbusalive.com)

Interesting article about our Columbus contestant.  His immigrant doctor father insisisted that he become a doctor.  He tried at OSU medical school.  How many times have we seen this with immigrant chefs that long to cook instead of fulfull their parents' dreams for them  I am happy to see them succeed and do what they want in America.

https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=&cad=rja&uact=8&ved=2ahUKEwiVzrG5xu3vAhXNLc0KHbT1BNUQFjAAegQIBBAD&url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.columbusalive.com%2Fstory%2Fentertainment%2Fdining%2F2021%2F04%2F01%2Favishar-baruas-unlikely-journey-ohio-state-pre-med-top-chef%2F4833365001%2F&usg=AOvVaw0QOSdkeW8si7sLrsp4h8Se

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On 4/4/2021 at 4:53 PM, BlackberryJam said:

 

(PS to the Columbusites, I went to The 2-1 in Westerville the other day. Skip the buffalo cauliflower, but the butter poached lobster Mac and cheese was excellent.)

 

On 4/5/2021 at 8:24 PM, susannot said:

Hi BlackberryJam!  Are you a Columbusite?  We should get together.  I have not been there and Westerville is a little out of my comfort zone.  Would never order the cauliflower anyway but the lobster mac "n' cheese sounds delicious.  My friends and I are now fully vaccinated so we plan to get together for coffee and bagels in the Short North.  Of all the foods I have been missing, a perfect bagel is # 1.

Columbus represent!!! I was so excited to see a chef from Columbus but was not aware of his restaurant. And I live relatively close to it!  The menu looks so good! Unfortunately I have been dealing with food intolerance issues lately so my minimal diet does not work well with eating out. Boo! Some day - for now I just hope that he can rebound from the first ep and do well on TC

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Gregory!!!! I was so distraught when he left last season I'm thrilled to see him again.

Hoping to see more of him!!! Delightful man!

I'm so glad to the show is back. I really felt for the poor chef (the athlete) who forgot her soup and then they let her sweat it out, not knowing if she was in the bottom group!

Re Padma: Very fond of her. I find her authentic (which in my book doesn't necessarily translate to nicey nice rainbows all the time) and there have been many instances where I've felt that she's handled emotional contestants/situations very well.

Plus I totally fangirled when she was there last season, looking incredibly beautiful and rattling off Italian. It was a very 😍😍😍 moment for me.

 

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On 4/4/2021 at 9:39 PM, buttersister said:

Those are two reasons. Also she’s smart and loves food. Taste the Nation, her limited series, is on Hulu, but the Gullah Geechee episode is on YouTube and really well done.

I admit to not knowing much about Padma (I'm a more recent 'convert' to Top Chef), but I saw her being interviewed some months ago and was impressed by her down-to-earth smarts and her wit.  Very likeable!

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7 hours ago, slaterain said:

 

Columbus represent!!! I was so excited to see a chef from Columbus but was not aware of his restaurant. And I live relatively close to it!  The menu looks so good! Unfortunately I have been dealing with food intolerance issues lately so my minimal diet does not work well with eating out. Boo! Some day - for now I just hope that he can rebound from the first ep and do well on TC

Columbus rules!  Let's make plans to gather at Avishar's restaurant and toast him, win or lose.

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I like Padma because she is multifaceted and seems genuinely kind. The thing that irks me is when she gets preachy and judgmental off screen but I just read or listen, give a slight eye roll and go on liking her anyway. I did give her back some points that I took away from her on my likable scale. Taken away because of her being a sneak towards the father of her child. Gave them back when she worked it out after he fought back about it and that they seem to now be on very good terms as a family unit. It wasn't even for any kind of abuse or neglect, she just wanted (and I mean wanted, not thought) a different bazillionaire to be the Daddy, lol. Which, cool life Padma! 

I was in the midst of Corona upset stomach when I had to look at that pink(!!) broth with meat (that looked like raw chicken soaking in its juice and not a cooked dish) so I was of course gagging. I do hope that that chef gets through some rounds of LCK so viewers and other people in the food world can see that he can cook. I was shocked when they showed his age as 44. I thought he was at least in his fifties. He has a great personality and seems to have allowed himself to pursue what pleases him in his short life so far. 

I have seen Shota(sp?) on something within the last year but I can't place where yet. Right now he is the one that I want to win.

This episodes winner along with the athlete lady annoy me so far. I want them to go far but their dramatics annoy for now. 

I want to be annoyed with sound effect lady just for the sound effects but so far I am not. If it gets too precious then she can go.

Did they state if the blind judging is going to be a thing the whole season or a one off or a just until Tom's previous worker is maybe gone? 

The guest judge that can go already is Melissa. Melissa is quickly becoming my Brooke. Sure they are both great cooks, get props from many chefs but their personalities just irk me. As far as Blaise, I think he is brought back as an inside joke, one that he isn't on the inside of. I can go for some Padma snark on him all season. He irked me recently because Rachel Ray happened to be on my tv and was doing a zoom with him. He had his wife and two daughters on and he was going to be cooking fish with the two daughters. But! he couldn't stop talking and holding his face into the screen and you could see the two girls waiting to start and their mother finally quietly leading them through the cooking of the fish, start to finish, several dredges then putting it in the pan. She would quietly confirm what they were doing, they would look to him and he wasn't doing anything but talking to the camera, so they would look back to their mother for guidance. He reminds me of Michael Muhney in that aspect of how his brain is wired in that I don't even think they are aware of the ignoring of others or that they are capable of stopping it, unless they are receptive to therapy or behavior modification (they aren't!! haha).

Agree with the janky camera work and popups that have to be paused in order to read. I still can't figure out if one of the popups about Kwawme (sp?) said he is part of Food & Wine now? He is my favorite guest judge. I do hope that with the money Gregory might be pulling in this season that he has enough to open up the restaurant he wanted to last season. He does seem to still be in a bit of pain during this episode. 

Edited by stewedsquash
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35 minutes ago, stewedsquash said:

I have seen Shota(sp?) on something within the last year but I can't place where yet. Right now he is the one that I want to win.

According to his imdb page(!) he was on Beat Bobby Flay in 2018. Could that be it? 

 

43 minutes ago, stewedsquash said:

I do hope that with the money Gregory might be pulling in this season that he has enough to open up the restaurant he wanted to last season.

Kann is open! I’m between vaccine doses and I’ll be restaurant-shy for a while even after I’m all charged up, but I am definitely pulling for him to succeed. I hope he continues to hang in there.

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According to an earlier poster Shota was on the show Iron Chef Gauntlet that Stephanie Izard won.

 

Team @AsianSensation!!

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3 hours ago, sharifa70 said:

According to his imdb page(!) he was on Beat Bobby Flay in 2018. Could that be it? 

 

Kann is open! I’m between vaccine doses and I’ll be restaurant-shy for a while even after I’m all charged up, but I am definitely pulling for him to succeed. I hope he continues to hang in there.

I don't watch that show. I do like Bobby Flay, just don't like the show. But I do think that is where I saw him when I was flipping channels and I got interested in Shota being onscreen. I keep remembering him doing a tempura and that he won. 

 

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On 4/1/2021 at 10:40 PM, Msample said:

When Tom said “this is fear in a bowl” I knew that guy was toast.

Blais, fuck you and your hair.

Every time I saw him and that dumb Ace Ventura hair I started complaining and my husband told me to stop. I said I could possibly not watch him AND his hair and not complain because it was too hideous. Now that it is all over and I never have to see that hair again, I'll chalk it up to COVID19. He does have great  hair. Maybe it just got really long and that's what the stylist decided to do with it (which would have also been a good time for a cut...)

This casting was a huge pivot from the past. Now we have these super nice, quiet, somewhat feminine men, and the loud boisterous ones are the women. I wonder if given the expose of the chauvinist driven harassment of women in the restaurant world and that many of the them had been on the show at some point, they are playing it extra super safe. I also noticed that none of the chefs are from the "big" cities, which I thought was really surprising at first, but maybe it's harder to find the sweet humble chef in NYC vs. Alabama. 

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