Top Chef

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Let the Bons Mots Roll!

Ariane is making a pan-seared skate wing with cauliflower puree. Didn't she already make that puree for the Martha Stewart Quickfire? That seems like cheating somehow. And it also seems like a lot of cream/yellow on the plate. As the clock winds down, everyone starts rushing. Carla has made a pea risotto with scallops, topped with gremolata. Carla explains that she has put "layers of flavor and love" in there. I don't know that I would want to eat Carla's love. That sounds messy and kind of bitter.

The dishes are brought to the table and Padma has to explain the blind tasting thing AGAIN like I think we get it by now. When Group B returns to the kitchen, they discover the television and that they'll be able to watch their food being consumed. Leah, slow on the uptake, asks, "Did they watch us?" Jamie thinks that her dish is better than any of the dishes in this round. Radhika thinks Stefan's duck is cooked well but the dumplings are too dense. Stefan is sure that everyone knows it's his dish. Fabio defends it, so maybe he knows too. Colicchio loves the flavors in the cabbage and praises it to high heavens.

Jeff's tapas trio ended up being oysters, seared tuna, avocado sorbet, and grilled peaches. Eugene thinks there's too much going on, and Colicchio thinks it's more a group of food than an actual dish. Toby Young loves it, and compares it to Tom Cruise's cameo in Tropic Thunder. Funny, that cameo made me uncomfortable and I thought it was overrated. I don't think that's what Toby Young is saying, though. Also, that was a try-hard comment. The judges move on to Ariane's skate wing, which Novelli praises as fabulous. Leah made a seared rouget with fried beans. Jamie didn't like it, but Toby Young thought it was a Pan-European take on fish and chips. Good criticism! I understand what that means! It helps me to understand why he liked the dish!

Carla's scallops are discussed next. Hosea liked the scallops but didn't like the topping. Jamie thought the gremolata was too garlicky and Colicchio adds that the garlic was raw. Groups A and B are excused. Carla tries to get philosophical about what a great opportunity it was to hear criticism like that as they leave the kitchen.

Now that the children are gone, the adults can talk. Colicchio thought Group B's food was better overall, and Toby Young was impressed by the food's quality. Colicchio hopes that the cheftestants now realize some of the mistakes they've made in past challenges. We'll find out!

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Top Chef

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