This post is deliberately blank to avoid mouse-over spoilers.
Interesting. Four really top chefs (predictable from about episode 3, I think) doing a top-notch job. I agreed with Michael’s (or was it Brian’s?) comment that in prior episodes, there was usually someone who fucked up and so elimination was fairly straight-forward. These guys didn’t really make any grotesque errors (and Kevin’s pre-emptive strike on “toothsome” was beautiful.)
Having said that, I think Jennifer was the one to go. She had that slump in the middle, so if they’re judging overall (which I think they deny), she was the least consistent.
I’m hoping for Kevin to win, because I think that if one of the brothers win, it would be terrible for them and their family. Sibling rivalry can be a nasty, deadly thing.
Quickfire - The space issues didn’t seem to really phase the chefs, although Kevin was motion-sick (he’s so cute!). Grapes would be a hard ingredient to highlight, I think. Was the Voltaggio brother that won the Quickfire the one who hadn’t won one yet? I thought it would be Jennifer, since Michael Chiarello talked about stealing her dish.
Elimination Challenge - Well, that wasn’t unexpected. I was worried that my man Kevin would be auffed after serving tough meat. They all did well. I think. It really was a matter of degrees off perfection.
Did anyone else wonder if Jennifer thought Kevin threw her under the bus with his advice about cooking on the embers of the woodstove and not the flames? That’s actually good advice, I believe. But you do have to make sure your fire is maintained so you have embers to use when it comes time to put your food on.
2 Top Chef threads posted at the exact same time. Which should I post to . . . ?
I didn’t think he was trying to sabotage her, nor did I think she was trying to suggest that he was. I think she just forgot (or didn’t know) to keep the fire going.
If you admit that you forgot to do something or just didn’t realize you needed to do something, that is the kiss of death, especially for Tom. When Jen admitted that she forgot to make sure the fire was up for her duck, I knew she was out.
Also, I can’t remember the exact wording, but Brian said something along the lines of he hopes Michael does well and that they both feel that way about each other. Then Michael’s next comment was how he hoped Brian failed because this is a competition. I don’t have the exact wording, but it seems like Brian likes his brother a lot more than his brother likes him.
Non food related, why does Padma insist on dressing like a stripper? That first dress she wore was really nice, then for the elimination challenge, she comes out looking like a stripper. And a pregnant stripper at that.
I loved Kevin’s verbal jujitzu with the word “toothsome.” He could be a political strategist.
I was glad to see Jennifer go home, although I like her and REALLY don’t like Michael, I just couldn’t shake the feeling that out of all of them, she was really lucky to have gotten that far (due to near breakdown). I know it’s supposedly based only one what they do for those challenges, but Tom especially often makes comments about previous ability (we expected more from your proficiency, she’s her own worst enemy, comments like that) and I can’t believe it doesn’t matter somewhat.
I liked how Tom immediately said something about Kevin’s vegetarian dish, that the other competitors (looking at you Michael!)might think it was simple but it was very talented to take so little and make amazing taste out of it. Sweet, I hope Kevin cooks his best next week!!
Jelly Roll - I don’t know, I think Tom repects someone who can think on her feet and adapt to changing situations. According to his blog, what kicked Jennifer out was that her dishes were both too salty. the other three might have had problems with one componant of one dish, but Jennifer screwed them both up.
I guess what made me wonder was the edited shot of Jennifer at Judges Table looking at Kevin when she said she’s let the fire go out.
I never got the impression that Jennifer expected Kevin to keep her fire going (it wasn’t his responsibility) and she took full responsibility for it going out.
Still rooting for Kevin. He is no doubt the fan favorite, did you see the poll results?
I’ve really enjoyed this season. I doubt Top Chef will ever have chefs of this extreme caliber again. Any of the Top 4 could have easily won in a normal season.
Jen was the best pick to go home. She’s a talented chef, but the competition gets her rattled. She has trouble planning a dish under pressure. The other three chefs think a little quicker on their feet.
I’m still hoping a fellow Southerner wins it all. Go Kevin! I’m definitely going to his restaurant the next time I visit Atlanta.
I’m not sure how they can call this a finale when it’s really the same as any other episode, just in a different location, and functioned the same way as any other episode. Having not watched the show prior to this year, I thought this was the last one and felt misled when we realized at about 10:40 that there had to be another week left. Not that I mind watching another episode (or two, with the reunion).
I was glad to see everybody did really well in this episode. I thought the harshest judges’ comments were directed toward Michael, not Jen, and I was a little surprised they seemed to make an issue of the way she changed preparations on the duck. It didn’t seem important. But the blog makes it sound like the dishes were REALLY oversalted, not just a bit oversalted, and she lost because of that alone.
All of the vegetarian dishes looked really good, although Michael’s dish was arguably not vegetarian because of the egg. I’m not really a stickler on that because eggs are in just about everything. On another note it was nice to see Michael admit for once that he’d learned something.
Bryan was clearly going to win this one, and good for him. I do think the three remaining guys did the best all season - Jen might be about as good as they are, but she crashed and burned a couple of times. But if I could have any of the dishes they made last night I think it would have been hers.
I feel bad about Jen leaving because you know she’s going to take it harder than any of the guys would, but this was down to a factor of razor-thin margins, and while I believe they didn’t use history as a factor (since they’ve demonstrated the same rigorousness in other finales), I suppose it doesn’t come as too big a surprise that she got rattled enough to cook something good-but-not-great (which, in this company, was just not good enough).
Although I’m rooting for Kevin, I like the fact that the brothers split the victories last night–it reinforced how it really is up-in-the-air, and anyone of the three could easily take it next week. Go Yukon Cornelius! (though I’d be happy to see Iceman Bryan win as well)
This season has just dragged for me and overstayed its welcome. There were so many cheftestants to be weeded out, and the same people kept showing up on top again and again, that the weeks have just blurred together. I think Bravo needs to decide once and for all whether it wants the show to be about established professional chefs or up-and-comers and amateurs. Mixing the two together like they did this season set them up for a largely drama-free, predictable slog, IMHO.
I was sad to see Jen go last night. I’m rooting for Kevin to take it all. Once they got rid of Robin I liked the season a lot more. She was sympathetic but she wasn’t in the same league as any of the top four or even the top five.
When Jen said that she would have preferred to have grilled the duck, I said to my husband “She’s going home.” I did read Tom’s blog, but I’ve also noticed that he’s like a dog with a bone when anyone admits an error - he does not let it go.
In previous seasons, they’ve had some of the eliminated contestants come back as sous chefs for the cheftestants in the finale. I wonder who will get Robin?
It’ll be like Christmas came early if Michael is stuck with her.
Did Bryan go on without any prize? Seems sort of bitter-sweet considering Kevin landed 30 grand last week.
And his brother got a car for a quickfire challenge.
I don’t think Bryan won any special prizes at all. I guess they figured advancing to the final would be enough.