Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Top Chef 6 Finale Part II

This finale definitely has some meaner elements than in previous years.

For instance, the random way of choosing sous chefs and having absolutely no say. This seems unfair way. Kevin really got hosed...has his luck finally run out? I mean, Pritti, really? Ash might be OK. Brian got the strongest hand -- Ashley was really underrated and he seems to appreciate her.
And Kevin badmouthing Pritti (or however you pronounce her name) -- his bitchface finally shows up. Has he ever said anything negative about another chef before? The stress must be really bad.

Did not recognize Jessie with her blonde hair.

Kevin's mom sounds like a cigarette and whiskey kind of gal, with that smokey voice. Kevin looked completely different without a beard. Bryan and Michael's mom was really lovely as a young woman and the boys were very cute towheads.

During a live chat at the Washington Post this a.m. -- since they're local boys -- the brothers joked that their Mom was rooting for Kevin because that meant neither son was edging out the other. Wonder if there was another underlying theme there. Also wonder if they did the live chat yesterday because they knew neither won.

Think Bryan had some sweat trickling on his forehead when he heard who the judges were. Once again he underseasons it.

Bryan definitely is not winning. It's going to be a throwdown between Michael and Kevin.

So Bryan did well on two courses, Michael on two or three, and Kevin definitely had two. But his wasn't the "chef's choice," which might edge out everything else.

Or the editors are monkeying with our brains. Which they like to do. I'm still peeved about how they made you think Lisa edged out Richard Blais when the judges were arguing all night between Blais and Stephanie.

I honestly have no idea who is going to win.

1. Kevin

2. Michael

3. Bryan

4.  Bryan

But Michael took risks and had admirable flavors in almost all his dishes. Almost all of his dishes had some element that people liked.

Kevin probably came in number 3. So is the winner Bryan or Michael. For personal reasons, I'm rooting for Bryan. But I recognize Michael's talent and his genius at finding creative ways of doing things. For instance, I'd love to try his fried broccoli.

Yep, Kevin was the first down. Poor guy, after leading the whole way -- to choke at the end. I'm not unhappy that Michael won, but I still wish it was Kevin or Bryan who had.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Top Chef 6 Finale Part I

Whoo hoo! Best season of Top Chef ever.

My friend J and I took the Napa Valley Wine Train...she does a lot of freelance for airline magazines so we got a few freebies, including the train, a bistro (owned by Thomas Keller) and a resort. The train was sort of fun, the food OK, the tour....well, touristy.

Note that Padma has water instead of wine. I like grapes as fruit. I don't like them mixed with other things. Especially in entrees. So I probably would have wanted to try Michael's because he used grape leaves, something I love. And wine sauce. Plus grapes. And good on Jennifer for using other favors really well. I hoped she was going to win the Prius since Chiarelli said he was going to put it on his menu. But Michael did use the widest variety of grapes.

Someone suggested that Kevin was really good at playing the usual Top Chef game, being a little conservative and realizing limits. But in the finale, you have to go all out. So I'm guessing it might really come down to the brothers. Jennifer seems good but lacks flash. Same with Kevin...he can manage complex flavors but can he really wow?

Jen's getting the loser edit here. And she's making her usual mistake of not knowing where she wants to go.

It's funny how they all fall back into their usual patterns, despite the three-month hiatus. Bryan always seems overly ambitious ands ends up in the weeds. Jen always seems a little unfocused. Michael always wants to show off. Kevin always does what he loves.

I have to agree with Michael about fresh eggs. Our farmer's market had an Amish (or Mennonite?) vendor that provided fresh eggs. I may never be able to eat normal eggs ever again. The yolks really are orange, instead of yellow. And they do have more flavor. My ambition, once the season begins again, is to learn how to make pasta using fresh eggs.

Hmmmmmm. They're not offering a lot of criticism. The judging is going to come down to minor details, like the lack of seasoning in Bryan's food, the runnyness of Michael's eggs, the "ropiness" of Kevin's beef. Liked all the talk of the "ducky duckiness" of Jen's duck.

I'm the vineyard, they raved about Jen's duck, now they're blasting it at judge's table. What's up with that? But as much as I love Jen, if it comes down to her or Kevin, I'll pick her to go. Bryan seems the clear winner from the discussion at judges' table.

But the editing monkeys could be deceiving us. During season 4 finale, they made it seem as though the difficult choice was between Stephanie and Lisa, when it was between Richard and Stephanie.

Bryan has the nerdiest laugh. But congrats!

Dang. Sorry to see her leave. And their reasoning actually seems kind of lame.  But it's so great to have talented chefs that there is no one you're rooting against  because they're not as good as the others, as in other seasons. Being jerks, on the other hand....