Top Chef Vegas Baby!

I am so excited for a new season! What little I know about the contestants makes me very excited. We have award winners and real chefs! It looks like more than one James Beard nominee and a chef de cuisine for Eric Ripert. 3 are from Atlanta and I find it odd that out of so few… BTW I think Ash from New York needs to not feel so special. I personally am not shocked to see a gay chef so I don’t understand why he feels so isolated. I love that it was assumed that Jennifer was a pastry chef and not the chef (she is the one who works for Eric Ripert).

Quickfire Challenge:
They got broke into teams of 4 to do the Mise en Place relay race. This is always an awesome one! Instead of the knife block we got poker chips. Robin pulled a gold chip that got her out of the relay race and she got immunity for the elimination challenge. They have to chuck 15 clams, peel 20 prawns, clean 5 lobsters, and butcher 2 chops off the prime rib.

Preeti has never opened a clam and was trying to do it like an oyster. The whole competition really on came down to 2 of the teams, black and blue. The blue team (Jennifer, Mattin, Jesse, and Bryan) won. Then the 4 team members had to do a cook off to determine a winner. The winner was to receive $15,000. Robin had the option to trade in her immunity to compete for the $15,000. They had to make a dish with the ingredient they dealt with in the relay. The bottom 2 were Brian and Mattin. The winner was Jennifer.

Elimination Challenge:
They each must cook a dish based on a vice. Each team will have 1 member up for the overall win and 1 member up for elimination. Wolfgang Puck will be the judge. They have $150 budget, 30 minutes to shop and 2 hours to cook. They are cooking at Puck’s kitchen.

A lot of the vices seemed tied to alcohol;). Hector deep fried a rib eye! On one hand it seems so wrong but on the other…is deep frying ever really wrong;)? Robin is going to benefit from immunity because she didn’t have time to put the sauce on the plate. We also have 1 of them serving gigantic chile relleno. I already don’t like Mike I.

Wolfgang liked Eli’s scallops. Tom and Wolfgang were not cool with the idea of deep frying the steak. Bryan’s dish seemed to do well. The steak looked so yummy! Jennifer’s fish was a hit as was her sauce. Jesse’s chicken breast was dry and that can’t be over looked. Mattin’s buffalo was good but they didn’t get why he served zucchini with it. I feel bad that Ash had to serve his halibut after Jennifer. I want those bacon donuts with chocolate sauce. Ron had to much on the plate but the fish was cooked well. Jen’s chile relleno didn’t go well, Tom really disliked it. The donuts were dense but the sauce was good. Michael’s lamb was done well and presented well. Eve’s dish was a mess and didn’t show complication. Kevin had the cutest concept and the artic char was done well too.

Judges Table:
So first up are Ron, Mike, Kevin and Jennifer whom we all assume are the winners. The overall winner was Kevin and his dish about procrastination. Next up were Hector, Jen, Jesse and Eve. None of them in either group surprised me. Eve said she played down her sauce. Tom really hit Eve for not searing her scallops. Jen got hit for poorly cooking her seitan in the relleno. Hector defended his deep fried steak but Wolfgang said not in America. One of the things the judges talked about was the difference between those who knew their mistakes, like Jesse, and those who didn’t, like Eve and Jen.

In the end Jen was the first to go. She seemed to think that is was because she used seitan. But Tom said that it was badly seasoned period and it didn’t matter what protein she used.

Good start to a new season! I am excited for next week.

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