Top Chef Season 5, Penultimate Episode: Down to the Fab 4.

I’m going to brush over most of this episode to get to handicapping the finale, except for a few things.  Yes, I got wood when Fabio said he was going to cut his thumb off and sear it on the grill to finish the competition.  And I thought the Last Meal challenge was a great one, and more over one where innovation was not at a premium.  The horror of impending death really brings out the need for comfort for some reason, and comfort dishes are about bold warm flavors with a minimum of gastriques.  It’s about what your mom made for you.  And beyond that, it is alot less about what mom made, but that mom was the one making it. 

So Leah left, which was the right choice I feel.  And now Hosea has “one more person to win for”.  Well now you have one less person to win for, because if your girlfriend back home stuck with you through the kissing and the cuddling, she sure as hell just left you for that comment. 


and now, the belabored Beatles comparison of the final four!!!!


Fabio = John


Fabio is as cool as John Lennon, before he met Yoko and went crazy.  A welcoming, inviting, ego-less cool that brooks no detractors.  His soul is pure, his intentions noble.  He loses his way sometimes, when his imagination strays too far from center.  But at his best, he is the best in us and the best of us.  I really hope he wins.


Stefan = Paul


Undeniably talented, but in a calculated, measured, meticulous fashion.  Stefan, like Paul, is the one you don’t want to like, even though you begrudgingly do.  He has gotten this far in the competition by not making mistakes.  Obviously the odds-on favorite, and if he did win no one would be surprised.  But no one would be too happy about it either. 


Hosea = Ringo


Hosea is the guy who shows great promise but just never quite gets the job done.  Sure they let him sing on a few songs, but they are always the dumb ones that sound like nursery rhymes.  I like Hosea, and not just because he dislikes Stefan, all though that is a point in his favor for sure.  He just never seems to bring it when it needs to be brung.  I hope he proves me wrong.


Carla = George


Mystical, mercurial, maybe just batsh*t crazy.  You never know what you are going to get with Carla.  It could be something as great as “If I Needed Someone”, or as not so much as “Octopus’s Garden”.  She is peaking at the right time though, and if she stays on course she might just win this thing.  But how long can she keep a straight trajectory before something goes in to retrograde and throws her off??


So who is going to win?  I really hope Fabio does, but Stefan probably will.  But it wouldn’t be any fun if I didn’t pick an underdog, so the official Citizen Chef prediction for the winner of Top Chef Season 5 is……



Never bet against batsh*t crazy.


~Citizen Chef

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