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S12.E03: The Curse Of The Bambino


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I hate Aaron so much. His casual misogyny and general asshattery is so awful that I'm not entirely sure I want to watch this season any more until he's gone.  I get that Bravo likes the drama, but he's just so vile that I am too worked up to enjoy the show at all anymore, even when they go to one of the holiest places in Boston and do a fun quickfire.

 

Also, didn't they do an almost identical ballpark challenge before?

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We have a new word for over cooked, hammered!  I just love a new silly word from time to time. 

 

There are 3 trouble makers and none of them are going to make it very far.  Aaron, Kutsuji and Kerriann.  At least they have each other to fight.  

Edited by wings707
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I'm not surprised that Ron went home, that dish didn't look all that appealing. I'm starting to learn almost everybody's names now.

 

I find both Carianne and Aaron annoying asshats. She talks a lot of shit but really can't back up what she's saying and same for Aaron, wishing someone to go home and being mean spirited doesn't paint her in the best of light. Her dish just looked unappealing as well at first sight I thought the meat looked burnt until they showed a closeup of it. Aaron just has an ego which him growing up without parental guidance people can turn out like him, but it's still irritating to see and watch, he needs to learn to not be so combative, especially with the person he chose to go against in the sudden death, still don't know her name yet. Just because she's a culinary teacher. Ugh. Grow up Aaron.

 

I'm so happy that Gregory won again and glad that Doug did well too, those two are my favorite so far this season. I'm liking Stacy a little bit more with each episode too. 

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Aaron is insufferable.  I hope both Katie and KeriAnne outlast him, if nothing else.  And I somehow just caught that he cooks at Bow and Truss.  Now I want to time travel and take back the meals I've had there.  But every time I've been there it's because someone else wants to go and I acquiese because the food is pretty good - the atmosphere is as obnoxious as he is.

 

Richard, no one cares about your salmon experience.  Shut up and talk about the food in front of you.

 

At first Adam sounded like he was blaming the convection oven for his overdone fish, so I was glad that from then on he was clear he just plain screwed up.  I'm still watching him with hesitation, waiting for him to revert to his behavior from the first episode.

 

I figured Katsuji would be safe since he acknowledged where his dish went to hell, whereas KerriAnn thought her tough short ribs were the right texture and Ron thought his giant fish ball was the proper size and it's these young whippersnappers with their "tiny" portions who are off course.

Edited by Bastet
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Ok, I am saying this as a baseball fan, but, Fenway is just a ballpark!!  It is not a church or temple or whatever.  It's just a ballpark!  While I can respect the park's history and reverence, the slobbering over the place was really overdone.  I couldn't really concentrate on the judging because every other sentence had to do with how great the place is.  Great, I get it, now move on. 

 

Happy for the winner.  Sorry to see Ron go, but I didn't think he would last long anyway.  Last week I said I would reserve judgement on Aaron and KeriAnne until the season progressed.  Well, it's progressed one week and now I think I can say they are both obnoxious.  They can go anytime.

Edited by caci
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Fenway is actually a shithole. I would call it a glorified Triple A ballpark but that would be an insult to the International League. I think the fact that there was no running water in at least one of the kitchen sinks speaks volumes and would make me not want to eat anything there. Okay, yes, I hate the Sox.

I need my darling Ming Tsai to take over as judge for Blais and Acheson, neither of whom bring anything of substance to the judging.

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I'm not a psychiatrist so i don't know for sure but I don't think Aaron's total asshattery is a result of his upbringing. I can understand he might have trouble letting people get close but I don't see it accounting for how vile he is.

I thought his sudden death dish looked and sounded awful. Katie's dish had me drooling a little and I was really hoping she'd win and Aaron would be out the door.

I didn't like the EC. For me challenges like that just set them up for failure. There seemed to be alot more misses than hits. Nothing sounded good to me.

I feel silly about this but I think it's annoying when the chefs ask each other "what's going on over there". I'd rather have Tom doing his sniff-n-sneer.

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There are 3 trouble makers and none of them are going to make it very far.  Aaron, Kutsuji and Kerriann.  At least they have each other to fight.  

 

The impression I have of that crew is that those at the back of the pack are desperately fighting with each other to just not be last. It's easier for them to focus on the other bad chefs that they can actually compete with, as opposed the front-runners who are leagues ahead. And though Aaron is a full-on jackass (I mean, really, mocking Katie for crying about her father after a stressful day?), I did think Katsuji was acting pretty ridiculous in the stew room as well.

 

Ron thought his giant fish ball was the proper size and it's these young whippersnappers with their "tiny" portions who are off course.

 

It's always annoying to me when the knife-ee doesn't seem to be able to see or accept what the real issue is; Ron repeatedly mentioned that his problem was that his portion sizes were too big. In fact, it seemed the issue was with PROportion - this ginormous croquette plopped into a bowl of soup, which made the dish unfocused and messy. I can't imagine that a croquette that large would cook evenly or be tasty. And, in a challenge where they were supposed to elevate the food, he made his croquette with Saltines and Ritz crackers. Unironically, just like my grandmother would have. He was just out of his league.

 

Although I am not one for crying in public, I did feel for Katie being paired with Ron and Aaron, whose reactions to her melt-down were to stare uncomfortably into the middle-distance in silence. What, you're so uncomfortable with emotion that you can't reach out to touch her shoulder or something?

 

Go Gregory! And Little Doug!

 

AND ONE MORE THING. This comment could apply to virtually all cooking competition shows, but I would like to institute a permanent moratorium on use of the phrase "a play on..." It's like nails on a chalkboard at this point. I think it was used at least three times tonight by different chefs.

Edited by stanleyk
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I'm kind of numb to most sob stories at this point, but as soon as Katie mentioned her father both loving and hating the Twinkies, I formed an insta-bond and was pulling for her so hard.  

 

I enjoyed a lot of this episode.  Gregory is so likable so far, and is just killing it.  A few more background cheftestants, like Melissa, had a chance to shine.  Adam sucked it up and didn't try to blame the oven.  A lot of them seemed really into being at Fenway.  I wanted to eat almost everything.  Welcome back, Hughnibrow!  Even Katie's breakdown--tears almost always seem to make Padma's gears rust, revealing her robot innards, but she did a passable human impression tonight and squeezed out some encouragement for Katie!

 

I've decided to ignore the shit-disturbers, so really the most irritating part of watching tonight was not being able to time my FF perfectly through the commercials and having to suffer through clips of Bravo's godawful other programming.

 

ETA: Oh, screw it.  I wanted to just ignore the jerks, but then I read Hugh's blog about them.  It is truly magical (the descriptor "so lacquered-up with misogyny" almost made me lick my screen), and now I'm back in my comfort zone of full-fledged Aaron hatred.  Hugh gives the best blog of any of the judges (other than Bourdain), yet another reason I'm always thrilled to have him around.

Edited by some1105
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I'm glad Richard is not a full time judge. He was annoying during the eating so I did not miss him at judge's table.

Did one of the guests say he doesn't like pretzels? Who doesn't like pretzels?!? I can't think of a much more innocuous food.

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There's still too many chefs for me to associate faces with food, but I know I don't like Aaron or the guy with the accent & the Asian name. The food is all one big blur so far. 

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I'm not a psychiatrist so i don't know for sure but I don't think Aaron's total asshattery is a result of his upbringing. I can understand he might have trouble letting people get close but I don't see it accounting for how vile he is.

 

I actually don't give a shit about Aaron and his childhood trauma although I feel bad admitting that.  I've come to believe that if you're self-aware enough about your motivations to express that kind of thought you have to be self-aware enough to make behavioral changes.  Otherwise it comes off to me like an excuse for bad behavior, like all you really know is that trotting out pop-psychology can sometimes excuse your bullshit.  It's manipulative, in a way, and plays on the sympathies of others.

 

I may be biased in my impressions of tonight's episode, though, because of the awesomeness that was last night's Face Off finale.  This show doesn't stand up to that especially with as much Aaron as they gave us.  

 

Random Thoughts:

 

There was zero suspense around the sudden death quickfire result because they aired a clip of Katsuji vs. Aaron that we hadn't seen at that point.  That was sloppy editing.  Also, I thought something about the quickfire was off.  If part of our origin story is dumping tea as an act of defiance, and we're saying we're a nation of coffee-drinkers because of that, why would tea be the ingredient?  It's a bit like celebrating the enemy (not that they're still the enemy).

 

Richard says a lot of words and reaches for metaphors/references, but he doesn't actually say very much.  I hope he relaxes and just critiques the food.

 

New Orleans is a much more interesting and entertaining city than Boston, at least so far.  Cops/Firemen, then baseball?  That's all pretty standard stuff.  Hopefully it gets better.  

 

So Ron talked about how his chosen career isn't exactly great for marriage and family but he's sacrificing to provide for his son.  Then I thought I heard KeriAnn explain that she's on the show because she gave birth and wants to show her offspring that it's important to go for your dreams even if it means leaving your offspring behind (and even if you're kind of a jerk as you seek fame/fortune).  

 

Generally speaking I'm over people who reproduce going on a reality show as some kind of parenting technique, or as a method of showing that your life doesn't end when you have kids, but this was mildly interesting, imho.  On the one hand you have KeriAnn and Ron, choosing to sacrifice time with their kids.  On the other you have Aaron, arguing that not spending enough time with your kids can turn them into dysfunctional people.  Maybe Ron needs to change careers and KeriAnn needs to drop her big dreams so they can focus on parenting, lest their children grow up to be Aaron.  It's kind of neat how that can all be wrapped up together. 

 

Not so neat, after watching I'm more focused on the stupid characters than the cooking.

Edited by phoenix780
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I don't know if Hugh was serious, but I kind of agree with him that Aaron has baldly and visibly set himself up to be the bad boy chef of the season. I thought it was telling that he chooses to focus his class resentment on women when his role model is Bobby Flay, the grey eminence of the third base club over at TFN. I guess he figures he can make himself enough of a scandal and a hissing to get a few Chopped villain appearances out of it.

Also, "lonely honey badger" (Hugh again) is a genius description of him. Am I wrong, or was Katsuji actually trying to be nice when he blew up and started yelling?

Gotta say, I think Keriann isn't impressing me a lot more. Which kind of saddens me, because I'm all over breaking the glass ceiling for woman chefs, and I think a lot of that is the idea that chefs can't have kids without a wife staying home with them. I just don't think, based on this past two weeks, that she's our poster girl. Last week could have been her being sucked into the vortex of Aaron's lack of charm. This week, though, if she genuinely thought she could, or did, break down the collagen in short ribs by putting them in the oven for three hours she may not understand some very basic things about cooking. Or she could just be putting a brave face on bad food, in which case, lame.

Adam and Gregory are starting to move to the front of the pack for me, along with Mei Lin and Melissa. Not holding out much hope for Katie, but I'd like her to last longer than Aaron, at least.

Also, Ming is yummy with longer hair.

Edited by Julia
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First - too much KeriAnn.  Too much KeriAnn.  I don't need her constant commentary on everything.  Her voice annoys me and I want to get to know the other chefs, so please, please, less KeriAnn.  Second - while Aaron isn't my favorite, in some things I get where he is coming from.  Katie (the instructor) seems to constantly fall back on "things she knows" and doesn't seem to like to really experiment with new techniques.  She chose to do what appeared to be a basic pasta dish for the quickfire.  The judges, generally, when faced with two things that are equally good, will go with the one that is a little more inventive.  I think this is why some contestant (Marcel) used to do all sorts of ridiculous mousses, and people will use nitrogen even when its not really necessary.  She has also been in the bottom, and she seems to get anxiety, that might be the person I would want to take on in a timed challenge.  And I know he wants to prove himself or whatever.  KeriAnn seems to be one of the most annoying people on the show, and it may all be editing, but damn.  And others have made comments about Katsji not exactly being a saint, and talking all the time.  And I have to think those comments are real, because they all were pulling against Aaron, so its not like they were calling Katsuji an asshole just to make Aaron look better.  Someone said that he will poke, and poke and poke at you, and someone said he never shuts up.  Thats a bad combination when someone is interrupting you while you are trying to talk, especially when they are making asshole comments like "well, I thought you were going to blame someone else" when you're trying to talk about what the judges said about your dish and how you fucked it up.  I don't think its unexpected to get upset with someone picking and picking and picking at you.

 

Aaron certainly isn't my favorite person, right now I like Gregory, and I think his backstory is interesting.  Lets hear more from Gregory, and less from KeriAnn.  I don't need her narrating this season.

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This show is doing what Food Network Star did with loudmouth blonde mommy Sarah -- killing us with Keriann THs and all of her facial expressions. Is this the new thing in a cooking competition now? Beat us over the head with an obnoxious woman and an equally obnoxious man? Aaron can STFU with blaming his upbringing for his shitty attitude. I know plenty of people who had it a lot worse than he did and they are some of the nicest people on the planet.

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The impression I have of that crew is that those at the back of the pack are desperately fighting with each other to just not be last. It's easier for them to focus on the other bad chefs that they can actually compete with, as opposed the front-runners who are leagues ahead. And though Aaron is a full-on jackass (I mean, really, mocking Katie for crying about her father after a stressful day?), I did think Katsuji was acting pretty ridiculous in the stew room as well.

 

I ordered the episode on Amazon, when did Aaron say something to Katie about crying about her dad?  I wonder if Amazon doesn't show the entire show.  If so, thats kind of a waste of $2.00

 

I'm glad Richard is not a full time judge. He was annoying during the eating so I did not miss him at judge's table.

Did one of the guests say he doesn't like pretzels? Who doesn't like pretzels?!? I can't think of a much more innocuous food.

I know right?  It was the sportscaster, I was shocked.  It is one of the few times I thought an opinion was objectively wrong, like maybe he just didn't know what a pretzel is.

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I ordered the episode on Amazon, when did Aaron say something to Katie about crying about her dad?  I wonder if Amazon doesn't show the entire show.  If so, thats kind of a waste of $2.00

 

 

You can watch the full episodes on Bravo and many other sites are free, as well. 

 

Kerriann, Aaron and Kutsuji will not make it far.  We are seeing a lot of them because it is the only footage the editors have that is interesting.  

 

Double elimination next week, maybe we will get lucky and knock 2 of them out!  

 

Hugh's blog is excellent!

http://www.bravotv.com/top-chef/season-12/blogs/hugh-acheson/hugh-where-theres-a-will-theres-a-fenway?page=0,3  

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-----Katsuji actually trying to be nice when he blew up and started yelling?----

 

 

RealityGal beats me to it.  But yeah, everything RealityGal saying is what I observed of the episode.  Something about Katsuji is offputting to me since episode 1 and was pleasantly surprise that he portrayed himself decently in episode 2.  I must said I like mostly all the contestants even Ron the one that just went home.  As for those who are drama queen at the moments, I just hope it played up the tension for future sudden death challenges.  Because they basically seemed to incorporate last chance kitchen to the main show (and eliminate last chance kitchen altogether).  Even knowing the result, the sudden death quickfire this time around is quite intense since I know more about the chefs and actually has investment on whether they got kick out or not. 

 

This whole immediate feedback thing make it easy to know where everyone stand.

 

The Great

1) Gregory Gourdet

2-3) Melissa King and Katie Weinner

 

The Good

4) Doug Adams- probably had the 4th best dish, Hugh spoke quite fondly of his dish

5) Stacy Cogswell

6) Rebecca LaMalfa- Rebecca is flying really low under the radar.  The compliment to her dish is rather mild as if there is no flaw to it but there aren't much standout either.  Hugh doesn't even mentioned her in his blog.  Even the dishes that screw up the protein had more praises on other components of the dish.  Looking back, I don't think she did anything worthy.  Her dish wasn't among the dishes that were compliment.  Even last week when she was part of the winning team, nothing was said about the components she did.  In comparision, Katie also did vegetable components and were praised for that while Rebecca get like zero feedback.

 

The imperfect

7) Aaron Grissom- nice presentation and some flavor but has some texture issue

8 and 9) Mei Lin and Adam Harvey- the good components are good.  The proteins are horrible.  Adam Harvey's fish is hammered.  And Tom did used the word "horrible to describe Mei Lin's protein.

 

The bad

10) James Rigato- Dennis Eckersley did say he can't continue after a few bites

11) Katsuji Tanabe- Ron wasn't impressed with the dish when he interview by Blais, but the judge did say it was better than Keriann.  So I guess her rib must be that tough.

12) Keriann Von Raesfeld

13) Ron Eyester

 

 

As for the blogs, I wished Gail was in this episode because at least her blog post can fill me in some of the details on the dishes rather than the gameplay (Richard) and or just humors (Hugh).  The four frontrunners at this point is Greg, and I gonna put Mellisa and Dougie before Mei Lin.  

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Re. pretzels: I like soft pretzels, but not hard pretzels -- they're too hard for me (I like a crispier crunch like potato chips) and I don't like the visible salt to such a degree (I'll brush it off soft pretzels too). I'm half-Pennsylvania Dutch no less, so I should like pretzels.

 

I wanted Melissa to win the quickfire: I like Gregory, but I feel like we've seen a lot of him already, and I'd like to share the wealth. Waiting for the inevitable lobster roll and/or New England clam chowder challenge, as well as Boston baked beans (I also don't like baked beans). But, as an upstate New Yorker currently ensconced in maple syrup season (which I could drink by the gallon), I'm hoping for a maple syrup quickfire.

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Gregory is running away with this, like Paul Qui did in his season.  Didn't Paul also talk about overcoming addiction?  I find Gregory's story inspiring.

 

I thought everyone knew that braised short ribs take at least 4 hours.

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This show is doing what Food Network Star did with loudmouth blonde mommy Sarah -- killing us with Keriann THs and all of her facial expressions. Is this the new thing in a cooking competition now? Beat us over the head with an obnoxious woman and an equally obnoxious man? Aaron can STFU with blaming his upbringing for his shitty attitude. I know plenty of people who had it a lot worse than he did and they are some of the nicest people on the planet.

Yes! There was so much KeriAnn last night and she was reminding me of someone - then this morning it struck me: Sarah on the last Food Network Star.  I like KeriAnn better than Sarah but I don't want to hear from her constantly throughout the show.  Plus I really don't like KeriAnn that well.  Aaron is horrible.  He like to study people and find out which buttons to push, then PUSH them.

 

Go, Katie!  Fellow Minnesotan and Twins fan!  I'm glad she made a good dessert but she should remember not to criticize her food until she hears first from the judges.  I am more and more impressed with Gregory. I really saw the Urkel resemblance tonight and now I call him Urkel in my mind.

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As a Bostonian who is not a huge sports fan, I love Fenway Park! It isn't a "cathedral" because of it's architecture or physical appearance (although, again, I love the place). I think Cubs fans have the same affinity for Wrigley Field. These stadiums are relics compared to the huge, shiny new parks. They have a lot of issues that come with being old.  However, even non-fans speak of the presence of history when they walk into these old parks for the first time.

 

To the long suffering Sox fans (and semi-fans), Fenway IS a cathedral. From April to October, her parishioners enter &  pray to St. Teddy & St. Yaz. They read the Gospel of the Boston Herald. They promise God all sort of  future good behavior if only the Sox could make it to playoffs.

 

Back to the show - I think I could tolerate Aaron a micron more if he'd just lose that stupid hat.  I don't know what that style is called, but I hate those stupid hats.  For me when I hear the word "ass-hat", those stupid hats are what i envision.  I don't see any evidence that he is as good a chef as he thinks he is.  That can be said for Keriann and Katsuji too IMO.  Still too many "middle of the pack" contestants for me.  I usually get more into it when there are 10 or less chefs left.

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Yikes! To me, Aaron and Kerrianne are more obnoxious than Ilan Hall, Sam Talbot, Battleax Betty, Lisa Fernandes, Heather Terhune and Sarah Grueneberg all rolled up in a fatty, greasy fishball combined. I suppose we'll be seeing a lot more of them in the near future. I just hope that the flameout is magnificent.

 

And speaking of obnoxious things, when Richard Blais recalled his salmon moment, I was shouting like a madman that that musciata salmon should have sent him home then and there, never to be seen again! I said that at the time and I still say it now. Man, do I still say it now.

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Ok, I am saying this as a baseball fan, but, Fenway is just a ballpark!!  It is not a church or temple or whatever.  It's just a ballpark!  While I can respect the park's history and reverence, the slobbering over the place was really overdone.  I couldn't really concentrate on the judging because every other sentence had to do with how great the place is.  Great, I get it, now move on. 

 

And this was exactly what I was afraid of when watching the Boston season. There seems to be such an inferiority/little brother complex to NYC, that anything Bostonian needs validation and propped up like, "LOOK AT ME! LOOK AT ME! I'm special too!!!!"

 

To be fair, I'm originally from Chicago, and my hometown is much the same way. It is exhausting having to validate someone's/some place's importance.

 

It's just a venue. If you are a die hard Red Sox fan, I am sure it is a religious experience. For the rest of us, the backdrop is not more important than the food.

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Fenway is actually a shithole. I would call it a glorified Triple A ballpark but that would be an insult to the International League. I think the fact that there was no running water in at least one of the kitchen sinks speaks volumes and would make me not want to eat anything there. Okay, yes, I hate the Sox.

 

 

Hate the Sox all you want, but Fenway is a beautiful ball park, especially since the new ownership has invested a lot in sprucing it up.

 

Aaron fully converted me to dislike, tonight.  I particularly don't like it when you guys go after older women because they think that older women are so weak.  I was also annoyed with Ron's attitude, from the beginning where he seemed to think that either Aaron or Keri Ann should go home merely because of their demeanor, even though his team had the worst dish, to his entire attitude about portion size and fine dining.

 

We're still in that part of the season where the number of cheftestants is so large that it is difficult to know any of them.  I was happy to see Kerri recover nicely from her attack of nerves.

 

And this was exactly what I was afraid of when watching the Boston season. There seems to be such an inferiority/little brother complex to NYC, that anything Bostonian needs validation and propped up like, "LOOK AT ME! LOOK AT ME! I'm special too!!!!"

 

You know, it is entirely possible for people in Boston to have feelings about our city that aren't actually in relation to anything that New York does. Really, truly.  Dan Shaughnessy's comments about Fenway actually had nothing to do with New York - people in Boston, especially Red Sox fans, actually genuinely feel that strongly about Fenway with or without reference to how New York feels about the Yankees or Yankee Stadium or whatever. And don't worry - Bostonians always feel we are more special than anyone else in the country, again, with or without NYC. It is part of the reason that the rest of the country seems to hate us without much provocation.

 

I would suggest that if people stopped watching the show with whatever filter they have about Boston, they might enjoy it more.  Because, so far, I have been pleasantly surprised at how not-stereotype-driven they are (except that I have had enough with the colonial history challenges, and I like colonial history).

Edited by eleanorofaquitaine
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I think I could tolerate Aaron a micron more if he'd just lose that stupid hat.  I don't know what that style is called, but I hate those stupid hats.

 

They're called gangsta rapper hats. I hate them too because I think it makes the person look stupid. And well...with Aaron, if the shoe fits....

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And this was exactly what I was afraid of when watching the Boston season. There seems to be such an inferiority/little brother complex to NYC, that anything Bostonian needs validation and propped up like, "LOOK AT ME! LOOK AT ME! I'm special too!!!!"

 

Shea was special. The new place is an exurban shopping mall, albeit one with good food. That other place in the Bronx is seriously graceless and ugly to the point that having paid for it with my taxes I'm kind of offended. Boston really has nothing to feel bad about there, if they actually do.

 

The bostonians I know, most of whom are former New Yorkers, really aren't terribly impressed with New York one way or another.

They're called gangsta rapper hats. I hate them too because I think it makes the person look stupid. And well...with Aaron, if the shoe fits....

I always thought they were called gimme caps, because businesses print their logos on them a lot.

Edited by Julia
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Did one of the guests say he doesn't like pretzels? Who doesn't like pretzels?!? I can't think of a much more innocuous food.

In Hugh's blog he said that it was also the first time the sportscaster had eaten a scallop.  He must be one of those picky eaters.

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I am beyond confused and obviously have not paid close enough attention. In the elimination quickfires, if the chef who lost the quickfire (Aaron) wins the elimination round, is no one eliminated? He picked Katie for the elimination challenge, yes? Yet she was in the second challenge at Fenway. So is it only a risk to be eliminated if the original loser loses the elimination round? I thought it was whoever lost the elimination round is gone, knives packed. I'm confused.

 

Stacy is growing on me which I didn't expect. I like Gregory as well. I really enjoyed Melissa too and hope she makes it far. I think at the moment, those are my top three.

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In Hugh's blog he said that it was also the first time the sportscaster had eaten a scallop.  He must be one of those picky eaters.

 

Or one who only eats dinner at whichever stadium he's broadcasting from. Sports guys usually opt for burgers or dogs, steaks or chops. From my own personal experience dating one once. :)

 

I thought it was whoever lost the elimination round is gone, knives packed. I'm confused.

 

I think they change the rules to suit whomever is in the bottom, if they want to keep the person around for drama.

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I thought everyone knew that braised short ribs take at least 4 hours.

I make braised short ribs all the time--in 3 hours. falling off the bone.

 

You know, it is entirely possible for people in Boston to have feelings about our city that aren't actually in relation to anything that New York does. Really, truly.  Dan Shaughnessy's comments about Fenway actually had nothing to do with New York - people in Boston, especially Red Sox fans, actually genuinely feel that strongly about Fenway with or without reference to how New York feels about the Yankees or Yankee Stadium or whatever. And don't worry - Bostonians always feel we are more special than anyone else in the country, again, with or without NYC. It is part of the reason that the rest of the country seems to hate us without much provocation.

 

I would suggest that if people stopped watching the show with whatever filter they have about Boston, they might enjoy it more.  Because, so far, I have been pleasantly surprised at how not-stereotype-driven they are (except that I have had enough with the colonial history challenges, and I like colonial history).

 

Hahaha, Eleanor, I agree. We don't care about New York. New Yorkers think we do, but we don't. Really. We love our town and are fiercely loyal to our sports teams and institutions because they are awesome!

 

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(Decades-long) New Yorker here who will never get over the loss of Shea: I and many of my fellow New Yorkers (even, ahem, Yankees fans) can relate to many Bostonians' veneration of Fenway, to the feeling of goin' to church.  I'm not saying it's just a New York/Boston thing to love baseball and certain stadiums.  It's more that I want to put it out there that part of the "New York/Boston baseball rivalry" tradition is that it requires both sides to participate--the rivalry may not be always "friendly", but it's comfortable because it's tradition, and in that way we need each other, and there's siblinghood in that.  I was so thrilled for the Sox in 2004, because I thought it would make the rivalry friendlier.

 

I also have no problem with this season's tributes to first responders.  God knows New Yorkers don't universally venerate cops without reservation.  There are serious police conduct, corruption and brutality issues in our city, and the public discourse on those issues is active and ongoing.  It is possible to take those issues seriously, and also to show respect for the very real sacrifice and bravery inherent in how they have performed during seriously traumatic events.  

 

Every city is going to have its cultural touchstones, some of which are going to make natives of that city groan (I can hear it coming about the Cheers bar), and some of which aren't going to make sense to people who don't live there.  It's a fact of life in New York and Boston that our Bravest, our Finest and our baseball teams happen to be cultural totems, imperfect though they are.  Thus they're going to be easy things to use as framing devices on a show like this--just like they cooked with tea (despite our pro-coffee statistics) because it makes for an easy Padma soundbite about the Boston Tea Party.  

 

ETA:  I also agree that most New Yorkers and Bostonians don't sit around thinking about each other all that much (particularly outside of baseball season).  I think the biggest thing we have in common is loving our cities, not hating each others'.

Edited by some1105
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I may be cold hearted, and getting more so each passing day, but I think Katie was trumping up her "dead father sadness," or it was producer-driven. Bringing it up at the judge's table while they were tasting her food, I just rolled my eyes.

 

And a part of me thinks that one of the reasons Ron went home was that he is not as "camera ready" as Keriann is.

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Every city is going to have its cultural touchstones, some of which are going to make natives of that city groan (I can hear it coming about the Cheers bar), and some of which aren't going to make sense to people who don't live there.  It's a fact of life in New York and Boston that our Bravest, our Finest and our baseball teams happen to be cultural totems, imperfect though they are.  Thus they're going to be easy things to use as framing devices on a show like this--just like they cooked with tea (despite our pro-coffee statistics) because it makes for an easy Padma soundbite about the Boston Tea Party.  

 

ETA:  I also agree that most New Yorkers and Bostonians don't sit around thinking about each other all that much (particularly outside of baseball season).  I think the biggest thing we have in common is loving our cities, not hating each others'.

 

Agreed on this. (Also, you're right to groan about the upcoming Cheers challenge, because that is one of those places that is way more important to tourists than it is to people who live in Boston).  But yes, Bostonians really do feel that strongly about our police officers and firefighters, and God yes, Bostonians feel very, very, very strongly about the Red Sox and all of the other sports teams.  You're correct, this isn't an imitation thing for either city. I'd venture to say that each city has had similarities with our histories, and that's why there is a similarity in outlook on certain things, but in both cases, they are organic.  Boston isn't trying to be New York. New York isn't trying to be Boston.  But there are places where our outlook and mentality overlap and I guess, to some outsiders, they assume that Boston is trying to be New York because geographically, it is smaller, and it isn't the center of national media and finance.

 

And I also agree that Bostonians don't hate New York City (much as we very much do hate the Yankees). I really enjoy NYC whenever I visit, and it is a really great city.  And when I have visited, the New Yorkers I have encountered have been perfectly lovely and have always had nice things to say about Boston.

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Hahaha, Eleanor, I agree. We don't care about New York. New Yorkers think we do, but we don't. Really. We love our town and are fiercely loyal to our sports teams and institutions because they are awesome!

Actually, most of us don't think about other cities much, as far as I can tell. We have definite opinions about other boroughs, tho.

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There's been something about Katsuji that keeps jogging my memory. I thought it was just that I had seen him on Chopped, but I just realized that he reminds me of Raul Julia around the eyes and in the sound of his voice.

Edited by Harry24
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This week, though, if she genuinely thought she could, or did, break down the collagen in short ribs by putting them in the oven for three hours she may not understand some very basic things about cooking. Or she could just be putting a brave face on bad food, in which case, lame.

 

I wondered if it was the latter, too, since in the last challenge she tried to say with a straight face that they came together as a team in the kitchen.  So maybe she's seen enough "why didn't you stand behind your dish?" scenes to think she shouldn't admit to any failures in front of the judges.

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Dan Shaughnessy is a scallops connoisseur? Who knew? And Eck almost choked when he was told he should have been on the Yankees. The ongoing Keriann-Katsuji-Aaron BS has got to stop and almost did. But for Don's so wrong croquette one of them would have been gone. Best line of the night: "Sometimes a bowl of soup should just be a bowl of soup." http://tvruckus.com/2014/10/30/top-chef-boston-aaron-escaped-elimination-katsuji-unhappy/

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I don't care a flying fig about Fenway, but it's Eck!  Eck!  Eck!

(I had to look him up on Wikipedia for little meepster who was giving me the sideeye.  Her comment:  "they were certainly into their mustaches back then")

 

If they had to do a tea quickfire, couldn't they have used some real tea?  Like oolong, lapsang sochong, green, earl grey, etc.?  Why would I care what someone can make with strawberry tea?  It's not tea.

 

Gregory has worked with Chris Consentino - or at least got in a selfie with him.  Good bye Ron, or as we named challenged were starting to call you, Scarface.

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Yeah, Dennis Eckersley had a real Sam-Elliott-cum-David-Cassidy vibe going on.

 

Some of the teas were fancified versions of basic teas--there was definitely an oolong in there with some kind of wonkaberry modifier.  I blame TeaVana and David's Tea.

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Fenway was a shithole when I was a kid and my mother told me to NEVER sit down in the ladies room without three layers of paper on the seat (five at the Boston Garden). However, they've cleaned it up a lot. Too much, in fact. It's like the Disneyfied Times Square, a little too clean. 

 

 

I don't care how Disneyfied they made Fenway the fact that I can now pretty consistently get a working stall in the ladies room gets it two thumbs up from me.

 

Not to mention that the Feway Franks are still their awesomely bad self.

Edited by bosawks
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The only good thing Dan Shaugnessy has ever done for Boston was inspiring dinosaur denier Carl Everett to nickname him "Curly Haired Boy."

 

God knows I hate Shaugnessy, but Carl Everett actually called him the "curl haired boyfriend" of Gordon Edes, which is not exactly a homophobia-free remark and thus a bit hard for me to embrace.

 

I hope the show at some point starts to veer more towards "Boston cuisine" as a theme, as opposed to "Boston, the city in general."

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