Top Chef
Fire and Ice

Episode Report Card
Kim: C | Grade It Now!
YOU GRADE IT
You're Hot and You're Cold

Tom comes in to talk to the cheftestants. Paul explains that he's making a bouillabaisse and plans to have ice and snow in the dish, and then pour the broth over it tableside so that it all melts together. Tom wonders what happened to Paul in the Quickfire and Paul says that Lindsay and Sarah just made better dishes. Paul is the best. No excuses. No false bravado. Just admits that his dish wasn't the best. Lindsay explains her dish to Tom, and it seems like a lot of random elements that don't necessarily go together. Tom asks her about her disastrous halibut dish during Restaurant Wars, and Lindsay actually doesn't throw Beverly under the bus for once. Sarah is making cannelloni topped with a spiced mousse or sformata that will melt onto the hot pasta and make the sauce. Or so she hopes.

One hour until service. All three of them agree that they're in the weeds, and they wish they were given sous chefs to help them out. Well, the staff arrives to help them out, and it includes bartenders and cocktail servers. Sarah's cocktail has a ton of citrus and she hopes it will be a palate cleanser. Paul makes a Thai chile foam to put on top of his cocktail that will look like snow. Sarah explains that she's making a mousse and freezing it on the anti-griddle, which is, as the name suggests, a griddle that makes things cold instead of cooking them. Except that her mousse gets too frozen and Sarah is worried that her dish won't come together properly. Sarah tastes Lindsay's food and says it seems good. Lindsay interviews that she needs to focus on her food and not their friendship, though.

Time's up and Paul wishes he had another hour. The judges arrive and the food is being served in an open-air pavilion so it's freezing out. The judges also joke about how there's no secret Last Last Chance Kitchen, so this is it for the chefs. Emeril wonders if maybe Beverly is hiding under the table. She probably totally is. Would you really be that surprised to see Bev on the edges of the crowd, running into people and pillars and apologizing?

Paul is first to serve, and he interviews that he's really not feeling his dish so he's worried. But it's time to serve, so the food goes out. His dish is King crab with lobster broth and lemon snow and his cocktail is "the Pan Am" featuring Kaffir lime, Thai chilies, palm sugar, and rum. The judges note that they have varying amounts of snow on their dish. I thought the broth was supposed to be poured tableside? I guess Paul ditched that idea due to logistics. The cheftestants also don't get to explain their dishes to the judges like they usually do. Tom is REALLY mad that Paul included a piece of arugula as a garnish; he argues that if you're going to use arugula, it should have a purpose in the dish as a whole. Tom likes the cocktail, although he thinks it's a little sweet. Padma wants it to have more heat and Emeril reminds her that they scolded Paul for adding too much heat to his dish in the Quickfire, so he might be gun-shy. The guest judge says that the flavors were all great but pouring the hot broth over all the garnishes made everything meld into a warm soup. Wasn't that kind of the point?

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Top Chef

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