Top Chef D.C. Episode 6 Recap

Our girl Tiffany almost snagged her first win last night. Almost.

Last night’s episode left me feeling more annoyed than ever. Sure, watching the chefs struggle with outlandish ingredients such as duck nuts and giant dinosaur-like eggs made things slightly more entertaining than usual, but I just couldn’t get past all of the scheming and plotting that went down. This show is becoming less about who’s the best chef, and more about who’s the best game-player. Don’t get me wrong, I love me some good reality TV drama. But this drama wasn’t entertaining at all. The only thing that kept me from shutting off the TV halfway through was the fact that Gail has finally graced us with her presence again. But she didn’t get much screen time because we had to watch the chefs repeatedly throw each other under the bus. Ugh.

Jump if you managed to make it through the entire episode.

For the Quick Fire Challenge, the chefs had to prepare a dish using some odd ingredients. The table was stocked with things like wild boar, ostrich, and crocodile, and rattlesnake meat. The chefs pulled knives to see who got to choose their ingredient first. Alex went with foie gras, Tiffany chose yak, Kelly got the emu eggs, and Angelo was stuck with duck kidneys. His face was priceless when he realized they were not actually duck kidneys, but duck testicles. That’s what you get for all of your scheming, Angelo.

I immediately felt sorry for the judges because most of the chefs had no idea what they were doing – especially Amanda. Did anyone catch the comically large glove and saw she used to open the emu egg? I suppose cracking it on the side of a bowl just wasn’t cutting it. Angelo’s duck testicle marshmallows sounded the most disgusting out of the bunch. Was he smoking quack crack? I mean, what was he planning to make? Rice Krispie balls? But just as everyone was starting to come to grips with their ingredients, Padma came back and told everyone to take over the dishes to their left. Twist!

Some were relieved to get rid of their original ingredients; others were not. I think Padma made the executive decision last minute because she couldn’t stand the thought of eating testicle marshmallows. In the end, Stephen (frog legs), Alex (ostrich), and Andrea (wild boar) had the worst dishes, while Kelly (emu), Tamesha (duck tongue), and Amanda (lama) had the best. Guest judge Michelle Bernstein announced that Kelly’s emu egg omelet was the winner due to its balance of texture and flavor. I guess playing it safe was the way to go.

I have a bone to pick with the guest judge. Apparently, she and Andrea are hometown rivals. Andrea was in the bottom. Coincidence? I think not.

For the Elimination Challenge the chefs were asked to prepare a cold dish. The catch is that they’ll be judging each other’s food. So, the chefs boarded the boat version of Air Force One, and began to plan how to throw the challenge their meals. After their time aboard the floating RV was up, the chefs headed back to the kitchen to start cooking.

Amanda was running around like a crazy person as per usual. Tamesha – who was still angry from the Great Sherry Debacle of Episode Two – couldn’t take it anymore, so she grabbed the giant emu saw and took care of that little problem. I wish.

Of course, Angelo innocently gave everyone tips on what to prepare. I’m not buying his Mr. Nice Guy act anymore. He’s obviously up to something. Alex said he was going to be a fair judge, but then two seconds later he said he liked Ed to vote him off. He also failed to tell Amanda about the cartilage in her food. What a jerk. And Alpha Male suspected that his competitors would try to vote him off because he’s the biggest threat, obviously. Geez.

Let’s skip the rest and move on to the judging. This was the first time we actually saw the food! Amanda prepared chicken galantine, Kevin went with tuna and veal surf and turf, Kenny whipped up a tuna and lamb duo, Alex prepared lamb, and Ed served salmon on pumpernickel bread. The judging cheftestants were harsh. They had absolutely nothing positive to say (or at least that’s how it was edited). Tom finally called BS when they said that Kevin’s lemony surf and turf lacked acidity. Thank you, Tom. They ended up nominating Kevin for the win and put Kenny up for elimination. Insert Kenny under bus.

Then it was time for the other team to judge. Tiffany prepared seared tuna, Angelo went with poached salmon, Andrea served up a trio of tartar, Stephen went with chilled beef (gross), and Tamesha chose scallops. The judging chefs seemed to vote pretty fairly because if they were strategizing, they probably would have put Angelo up for elimination. That would have been amazing to see Angelo and Kenny in the bottom! But no such luck. They voted Tiffany’s tuna the best and Tamesha’s spicy scallops the worst.

So, Kevin and Tiffany were up for the win. I was so excited because I really thought Tiffany was going to pull this one off. But my hopes were dashed when they named Kevin the winner. Better luck next week, Tiffany.

Since Kenny and Tamesha were in the bottom, we immediately knew Tamesha was going home. There was no way the judges were going to send Alpha Male home. Michelle earned back some cool points, however, when she called out Alpha Male for being too cocky. It’s about time! And we now know Angelo’s true intentions.  He tasted Tamesha’s dish! He knew it tasted like crap! He wasn’t hitting on her at all — he just wanted her out of the competition.

This show isn’t about who’s the best chef. It’s about who’s the best at playing the game. Tamesha shouldn’t have gone home last night — there are plenty of people who should have packed their knives first. (I’m looking at you, Amanda.) Let’s hope things get better next week.

2 comments on “Top Chef D.C. Episode 6 Recap

  1. I am this far (holds thumb and index finger so close together as to be almost imperceptible that they are not actually touching) from writing off this season altogether. The cooking is mostly uninteresting and the producers have clearly decided that they want the show to be more “gamey,” what with that weirdo swap of foods halfway through the quickfire. And then the unnecessary drama of having the cheftestants pick each other off at table.

    The cheftestants were naturally as catty and hypercritical of each other as possible. No other result was possible.

    I really don’t know what the h-e-double hockey sticks the producers are thinking this season. Are they trying to ramp up the melodrama by adding contrivances to make up for the fact that they selected a group of cheftestants who are lacking in charisma and personality? They totally wasted that boat prop between the quickfire and the elimination challenge, although it sure gave me lots of material to work with “Look, Kenny, there’s the double bed where President Kennedy used to ‘consult’ with Marilyn Monroe!” Of course, this group of cheftestants seems to have such little grasp of history that they might not even be aware of what a horndog he was.

    Honestly, at this point I’m looking forward to “Just Desserts” to see if it’s more interesting. And I’m hoping that TLC brings back Chef John Besh’s show. Now that was incredibly entertaining cooking TV.

  2. Skill-wise Kenny is the best most consistent chef of the season. Personality wise he’s a slug. (at least there was no fakeback this wk of his bathrobe and girls gushing that he’s the 2nd coming of Shaft or whatev)
    I’m hoping Ed, Tiff, and Kelly join Alpha Male for the Top 4. Alex, Stephen, and Amanda are all living on borrowed time IMO. The rest of ‘em I can take or leave. Angelo certainly has the potential to make it to the end (he has made SOME good dishes but factoring all the subterfuge, naming him Top Chef would leave the bitterest taste in my mouth since Ilan The Bully beat Marcel the Foam-maker in a popularity contest)