This episode was a throwback to 1950s dining, but the only person who knows anything about the ’50s is John Tesar. Nobody else on Top Chef is old enough to remember the mid-20th century. So, obviously, Tesar stole the show. Again. In the first few minutes, we remember why General CJ and Josh Valentine hated on Tesar so much in the Stew Room. Oh yeah, it’s because he turned his back on Kuniko last episode. (Ugh, Kuniko, why did you get yourself eliminated?) Tesar takes this opportunity to call himself the “most hated chef in Dallas” for the umpteenth time since this season has started. And we’re only on episode four, right? Goodness gracious.
Round 1: Quickfire Challenge
The chefs have to conquer two primal cuts of meat. Two very dead, very heavy cows are “blank canvasses” for the cheftestants’ butchering. Tesar goes after the oxtail with Micah, Josh makes fancy meatballs, and Eliza (who I forgot even existed until now) grills flank steak with cherry cognac. How pretty. General CJ thinks he’s the best chef in the room, but he also thinks his biggest competition is Tesar.
“I want to beat John bad because he was annoying the night prior, and I know he is a contender.”
Too bad, CJ. Tesar wins this round with his braised oxtail and potato gnocchi. You’re going to have to wipe that goofy smile off Tesar’s face next time… if there is a next time.
Round 2: Elimination
Padma tells her little people they have to revive the original 1950s menu of Canlis, one of the nicest fine-dining restaurants in Seattle. Things start getting heated once the cheftestants split up the menu. Josh, who keeps reminding us that he’s from Oklahoma, has the French onion soup.
“Have you made French onion soup? Because that was like my first job at a French restaurant in 1975,” says Tesar. Ouch. That’s one way to make friends, I guess.
CJ, who is seriously annoyed at Tesar, tells us that “John’s going to expedite because he has immunity. And, as he’ll tell you, he’s opened, like, 96 restaurants and he can do anything.”
Model Asian, Kristen, is stuck with two easy sides: onions and mushrooms. But she’s gotta make this work. Carla has squab, and Chrissy gets the Canlis special salad. Bad move there, girlfriend, bad move. Special salads are a female dog to make. The judges eat and confer, and they decide to award Model Asian with $10,000 for her onions and mushrooms. Really? Really?? Even Kristen can’t believe she won $10,000 for onions and mushrooms. This goes to show you how much the other dishes sucked. But now Carla, Chrissy, CJ, and Josh are on the chopping block. Josh’s French onion soup was cold, and CJ’s kebab with rice pilaf was mushy.
Guess who gets eliminated? Desiree will be happy to hear that her Italian mama, Carla, is gone because of her badly cooked squab, and so is Chrissy. Dangit. Chrissy was cool, even if she did overdress the special salad.
Looks like the Tesar Haters are back in the game.