Top Chef

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Let the Bons Mots Roll!

The cheftestants file into the Stew Room. They chatter about who's getting sent home; Melissa is pretty sure it's going to be her. She thinks her dish was creative. Really? Fish tacos? Creative? Padma comes in and asks for Jamie, Stefan, and Ariane, but she has to ask for them by the names of their dishes, since she still doesn't know who made what. Those three file in to Judges' Table and are told that they are the top three. Colicchio enjoyed the flavors and felt it really showed what Stefan can do, which was part of the challenge. Toby Young thought it was "unmistakably German." Jamie explains that her dish was meant to redeem herself after her scallop disaster last week. Toby Young thinks the anise-y flavor of the fennel complimented the caramel-y flavor of the scallops. Jamie breaks into a grin when Jean-Christophe tells her it was a great recipe. Ariane was pleased with her dish as well. Colicchio is happy that she used the pineapple well, cooking it and incorporating it into the dish instead of just sprinkling it on top or whatever. Padma lets Novelli announce the winner, since he's the guest judge. He announces that the winner is...Jamie. She breaks out in a broad grin and Ariane and Stefan hug her because she finally won. She interviews, "Watch out guys. Somebody to reckon with here." I hope the producers goaded her into making that comment, because it was pretty gross.

The top three return to the Stew Room and inform Melissa, Eugene, and Carla that they need to head to Judges' Table. Padma tells them that they were on the bottom and two of them will be eliminated. Carla says that she wanted to make a vegetarian dish, and she compromised by adding the scallops. She wanted to build flavors, and knows that she may not be full of pizzazz. When she says pizzazz, she makes a Fosse gesture, complete with jazz hands, and Colicchio looks like he's trying really hard not to crack up. Toby Young's main complaint was that it tasted bitter, and Carla realizes that she should have put the gremolata into the risotto. Colicchio agrees and seems pleased that Carla had a specific suggestion on how to improve her dish. Melissa thought it was really helpful to be critiqued, even though it was harsh. Colicchio wants to know what she would have changed, probably looking for something like what Carla just said. Melissa just says she would have made a different dish, but doesn't inform us what that dish would be. Colicchio tells her she had "a failure of imagination." Melissa knows she has made the dish taste better in the past. Jean-Christophe thought her dish was bland, and Toby didn't like the unpleasant smell. Melissa didn't think the dish was "that bad," and I feel like she's said that a lot in front of the judges. They ask her why she served up such crap, and she says she didn't think it was crap. And yet, I think the judges don't lie.

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Top Chef

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