Top Chef, Season 4 Episode 4: Zoi Is Whiny

MM: Episode 4, “Film Food”, did not disappoint. They started out with a very tough Quickfire being judged by none other than Daniel Boulud. The challenge was to showcase three “techniques”. This challenge really brought to light a lot of the things we’ve been talking about before, where the challenges have really stepped up everyone’s game, separating the weak from the strong early on. Honestly, I felt confident for about three of the chefs, and that was about it.

CC: Yeah, it was pretty apparent that this was a harder challenge for some than for others. I thought what the winners all had in common was that they made composed plates that happen to have evident knife skills, where the others were obviously just making a pile of brunoise this and baton that.

MM: Some were just doing a generic veggie platter – case in point, the chick who didn’t season her zucchini before throwing it on the grill. You can grill a hunk of zucchini – uh, good job.

CC: “Oops, I forgot people were still going to actually eat this.”

MM: (Laughs.)

CC: The winner’s plate looked amazing though, and I’m glad to see my current favorite faux-hawk d00d in the top 3.

MM: Although I knew we were going to see a lot of chefs struggling with the challenge, I was shocked at just how many said the technique challenge “wasn’t their thing.”

CC: Proponents of the new “no cutting” style of cooking that’s all the rage in Hollywood.

MM: So the winner, Heung II, was given immunity and allowed to choose the team he would be on for the Elimination Challenge. Or is it Heung Deux?

CC: (Laughs.) And he picked my boy, uhm, what is his real name?

MM: Richard.

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CC: The elimination challenge I thought was a really cool idea, making a dish inspired by a movie. My favorite movie is Fight Club, but that doesn’t translate well to food unless you want to serve a really rare steak or maybe some homemade napalm.

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MM: Mashed potatoes with some sort of new-fangled contraption that explodes gravy onto the eater. I’m sure your boy Richard could figure out a device for that.

CC: I did like that it was still all about the food though. They let one team get away with using Top Secret as an excuse to cook beef, because the dish was good.

MM: Even though Mark had never heard of “A Christmas Story”, I thought their dish was extremely appropriate. Thematically, I think that one was my favorite.

CC: I thought they were going to get knocked for using quail instead of duck.

MM: So did I, but they presented it somewhat well. Quail with cranberry dressing and an egg roll – I thought it was hilarious.

CC: I thought the Willy Wonka plate was great, and I have to begrudgingly give Andrew, aka K-Fed #1, props for making a hydrocolloid… But then I take them away again for wanting to dress up like an Oompa Loompa.

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MM: I’d give negative points for that.

CC: So let’s talk about hot lesbian girl whining. Not a fan.

MM: Yeah, she’s been featured in the last couple of episodes doing that. There’s a lot of crying and complaining going on with her, and I find it unbecoming of a Top Chef. She’s been in the bottom a couple of times now.

CC: Her whining is beginning to outweigh her hotness, which to be honest is only propped up by her lesbianness.

MM: There is no hotness and has never been any. Sorry.

CC: You prefer your lesbians more butch?

MM: I don’t know if I would say that, but I think her girlfriend is a little more put together and she has cool hair. That said, I wouldn’t go out on a date with her, no.

CC: I’m sorry I’m making up the rest of this conversation in my head and it is MUCH hotter. I am surprised none of the team picked a “foodie” movie, like Big Night or Eat Drink Man Woman or something like that.

MM: Now we didn’t even talk about the other loser dish yet: Good Morning, Vietnam, the Vietnamese dish. Manuel was voted off because he didn’t step up and put his opinion in about the dish, and just went along with whatever his partner was saying.But I don’t know if I agree with that decision.

CC: I thought Spike was going home for that one for sure. The judges said they had to make the decision “their own way” so I’m assuming they brought past performance into account.

MM: Let’s back up a second, because I have to get this out – I thought the whole Judges’ Table for the losing teams was decided strangely. It seemed the only reason the “Talk to Her” team was brought to the Judges’ Table was because they did not make the connection between the dish and the movie as well as they should have, although the judges all agreed that the dish was good. There were harsher things said about some of the other dishes, such as the pasta dish.

CC: Which is what saved them in the end.

MM: Well, I can understand that the judges would not be happy that they may not have followed the whole movie connection as well as they could have, but the dish was a really good dish. It just seemed to me that some other team with a weaker dish should have been there. The only reason they were there wasn’t because of the food, it was because of their dumb explanation about the movie. I get why they were not happy with the team, but I don’t think that warranted the Judges’ Table.

CC: I don’t remember them being too critical about any of the dishes, so I assumed Spike and memo’s dish was the clear loser. Oh, but Manuel’s speech at the end, that was classy I thought. He thanked both chefs and the judges panel, and then talking to the other contestants he said, “I’ve never been surrounded by a more talented group of people,” or something to that effect.

MM: That was nice, but I don’t think he should have gone home for Spike’s complete and utter douchiness. That isn’t a word, but you get my meaning.

CC: So here’s the debut of a new feature in this series: EXPERT PREDICTIONS -IONS -IONS -IONS …. Where we predict the next Chef to get the heave-ho! Had to stop myself from saying “getting the axe”.

MM: Ok, so the next Chef to go… I have a couple of least favorites that I think will be gone in the next couple of episodes: Nikki, Spike, Zoi. Actually, scratch that. I think Ryan will be gone before Zoi is.

CC: Yeah, I was going to mention Ryan as my sleeper d00fus. Ryan and the K-Fed twins would be my ‘want to go’. But what is your answer to who is GOING to go??

MM: I think it’s a toss up between Nikki and Ryan.

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CC: I’m gonna go with, somewhat regrettably, Zoi.

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MM: Let it go, dude. It’s OK.

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