Two things first off!
#1- I'm still missing cheddar from KK, Ed, Kat & Keith and Kyle (that's a lotta Ks!)
#2- I’m home!
Note: if there were snow on the ground I’d revoke that exclamation point.
I mean I do love snow but not when I'm just coming from Miami. The only thing I love when I come back from Miami is the potential for more Miami.
I came home in time to vote. And I didn’t get anything I voted for.
Add a warm Pepsi and a trucker hat to those two sentences and it’s a country western song. Get on it, Rayna aka Connie Briton! (Nashville shout out!)
The ep begins with someone saying if will.i.am weren’t so “damn nice it would be easier to hate him more.” Mexikosher tells him when he’s asleep he’s going to “hit him in the face.”
Annoyed Aaron says Mexi’s plan is to get in everyone’s head and wage a mental war on the other chefs. Really?
I thought that was Your plan, Annoyed Aaron. (btw get out of my head!)
2008 says she misses her kids and doesn’t feel like being a part of it anymore.
She can’t do the best she can if she just wants to be home with her kids. Right THAT’S the reason why you’re doing bad, because you miss your kids. It’s not because you won something in 2008 and nothing since. That award is older than one of her kids!
2008 calls her husband and cries a bit and he says she’s great and the kids don’t have the trots because, let’s face it, she’s not home making dinner and she feels better.
In the morning a note arrives asking the chefs to meet Pads at 84 Beacon Street,
it’s signed “Cheers.”
Born & Bred quickly admits that she may “have been asked to leave Cheers once.”
Not Colucci and I!
I'm pretty sure we were so welcome we coulda had jobs there by the end of the night. Shit, Colucci damn near interviewed-
But back to the ep!
Pads introduces a "very special guest" and in walks and extremely tired looking-
The chefs all yell “Norm!” and he tells them to stop because it’s a painful reminder of the millions he made.
Pads says “Boston is home to some of the oldest bars" blahblah history blahblah "by law every bar has to serve food“ (um, I don’t remember Vichyssoise at the Waltham Tavern) which leads to-
The kitchen has been stocked with good stuff, they have 30 minutes,
Time Starts Now!
Salad is making pickled cheese curds; 2008- fresh crab and beer battered onion rings with hollandaise, LaMalfa- chicken wings with spicy ponzu glaze.
Annoyed Aaron presents a burger on toasted white bread with a sunny side up egg, caramel bacon and peanut butter and mayonnaise.
That’s Pads- "I haven’t had peanut butter or mayonnaise since Salman Rushdie and I were high on Clicquot and keef and licked it off each other in front of his Damien Hirst sculpture."
Or it could have been Damien Hirst himself.
Banter- Pads asks if he gets a lot of free beer and George admits he gets his fair share of beer sent over to him but apparently he doesn’t like beer- “nobody's that good of an actor.”
Shit if that’s the truth a bunch of kids I went to high school with deserve Oscars.
Mexikosher is making a seafood tostada; Who is James Rigato is going to serve George Wendt crudite (pickled and grilled carrots and a red bean purée.) Generic is sure this is a very bad idea. He’s making black bean chilaquiles with a fried egg. Mei Lin makes fried wings with a chili vinaigrette.
will.i.am’s bacon burgers suddenly go topless! The top buns fall on to the floor- one is even missing the onions, pepper and bacon!
Pads: "My burger's looking dry," will.i.am "what happened?"
He explains and the other chefs find his "disaster" amusing upon presentation.
Then Pads says she heard will.i.am had a crush on someone on Cheers and he admits: “I did. Woody Harrelson.” Wendt tells him to take a number.
Hold Up! Did Pads out will.i.am?
I think she did…hope he didn’t mind.
will.i.am (Wendt tells him Woody is vegan anyway) and Who Is James Rigato
He does a little dance to the applause of everyone except Annoyed Aaron
who obviously wishes Eyester were there to pat his back and read him a story.
Hey, I’m just realizing they didn’t show Mel King’s dish or Aww Lil Dougie’s dishes…hmmm…
Well this guy has cleaned up since I saw him drinking in dirty chef whites at Via Matta. Stylist- ACTIVATED!
Schlow is gonna let the chefs cook in his restaurant. Pads says they have to work together in teams of three to create a classic three course Italian dinner: anti-pasta, pasta and secondi. The diners will see all the menus and the team whose menu is ordered the most wins. Everyone else- up for elimination.
Damn this is like mini-Restaurant Wars, yo!
Then Pads lays it on them- immunity was even more important because two chefs are going home.
In case they didn't get it: "It’s a Double Elimination."
Salad rethinks that salad she was going to make.
Tomorrow they have two hours to prep for sixty people and OH SNAP they get to pick their own teams!
Generic locks eyes with Mei, they nod, he looks up and notices Aww Lil Dougie and…Done.
2008 doesn’t want to be stuck with Annoyed Aaron who strolls over to will.i.am and Mexikosher- “Who you guys doing? You two? Alright let’s do it. We’ll work well together.”
To further illustrate his discontent the Cameras catch this passive aggressive almost kick in the ass not he way out-
Immediately the water simmers for these three Executive Chefs- Annoyed Aaron wants to use words diners will be familiar with on the menu- roasted, caramelized, marinated.
Mexikosher says there’s a better word for marinated: “macerated.”
When I think of that word I think of cherries. The maraschino cherries that I thought were Real cherries until we could afford the ones that didn’t come in a jar full of liquid diabetes.
Mexikosher says macerated sounds “more complex.” Annoyed Aaron asks for a better name for the dish Mexi suggests:
Mei Lin, Generic and Aww Lil Dougie are all Sous, they know how to make food but don’t usually menu write. “We execute.” Aww Lil Dougie wants to do a warm radicchio salad.
Here's a classic shot of Generic—
Who is James Rigato? A chef who wants to make lamb or red meat because he thinks it will sell.
He grew up in an Italian family.
He makes Italian food. “But not only that” he got a Food and Wine nomination for best chef.
He doesn’t want to make seafood but Mel King and 2008 apply a little pressure and Who is James Rigato? A man that yields. To be fair they asked: "Are you okay with us doing fish?" He says yes.
In the Via Matta Kitchen there's an argument over space!
Annoyed asks if Mexikosher is okay and he answers: "I don't want to talk to you. You know how we are, no talking in the kitchen you and me."
Mei Lin says she’s known as the Fish Bitch at Michael Voltaggio’s restaurant. Really?
I’m known as the bitch who will cut a bitch if you mess with my man! (Pictured here in his glory.)
Oh to be a spoon…
Meanwhile Mel King is pulling out fresh ravioli. In two hours. Yep.
Salad, Born & Bred and LaMalfa are doing seafood, homemade pasta and red meat.
This just in!
Schlow who, let’s be honest, should probably create a serving spoon that looks like plow and call it a Schlow (get at me, Kid, I got millions of 'em) is going to be in the kitchen expediting for the entiiiiiiire service.
No pressure there.
Colicchio wishes them luck (without talking to any of them unless they chose not to show us that part- honestly there's lot of stuff we're not seeing in this ep), leaves and Annoyed Aaron berates Mexikosher because his ingredients are all over his station and he can’t work.
You can imagine what the area looks like. Oh, you don’t have to-
Yeah that’s pretty much my tiny kitchen sans all those stainless steel containers and the dairy, of course. I got room for bupkiss!
Annoyed Aaron (to Mexikosher): “I need your help to clear your station, okay? Come on, you just totally shit all over me!”
will.i.am pleads for them to get it together.
Annoyed: “I just got shit on, Dude.”
Schlow announces he wants it as quiet as possible so things will go smoothly. Hey, Schlow is watching everyone! It's his kitchen! Shaddap!
Here come the Judge!
Pads is lovely in curls (a first!) and some odd number with embroidered flowers that call attention to her vagina.
She's trailed by Blais, Colicchio and, even though she looks a bit like her, Not Anne Hathaway.
The talented Emmy Rossum (which Autocorrect wants to make Possum) was recently a guest judge on the season finale of Project Runway and, in my opinion, hyper critical about minutiae.
Semi-annoying. Maybe she can date Aaron!
Now I’ve heard tale told that some Poolers (Kat and KK) and Pals were actually in this episode-
I have yet to see them (I'm using that pause button like a MF) but rest assured when/if I do I will freeze and photograph the shit outta them! I did hear that most of these peeps weren't pleased with their foods- SHOCKER! Please weigh in Poolers and I'll feature it in the next blob (aka blog.)
All the diners receive all four menus (man a P.A. was at Kinko’s all night putting this shit together!) and Not Anne Hathaway has a problem with the word macerated (friggin Mexikosher…)
Right away purple team: Annoyed Aaron, will.i.am, Mexikosher and blue team: Salad, LaMalfa and Born & Bred get the first orders.
As the Judges ask for the purple team's menu, Not Anne Hathaway asks if the server can make sure the chef knows she’s gluten free.
I'd like to go on record as saying Salad has the best reaction shots.
But Salad gets to work on a zucchini pasta like it’s no thang. Salad- in her salad element!
Pads and Not Anne Hathaway basically do a gluten free commercial. Yawn but this is potentially be disastrous! Almost like me being there and saying I’m vegan, which, btw, could have happened since KK was nice enough to call and ask me if I wanted to be at this tasting but
#1- I was miles away and had just come out of acupuncture (Translation: I was so mellow I might have tried to braid Padma’s hair) and
#2- I realized…I’m vegan!
What the hell am I gonna eat? I mean, I have trouble eating in my own home!
First dish up!
Pads calls it “beautiful” and Blais admires how he did it. High praise for the Annoyed One!
Mexi is happy he has immunity since he is clueless how to make his dish gluten free
(remember he's used to adding ingredients, not subtracting them.)
Not Anne Hathaway says she thinks she has the filling for what everyone else got.
Blais: “That bothers me as a chef you have someone that's gluten free and you don't really think it through…” Pads says the peas were bad and Colicchio doesn’t like Mexi’s pasta, calls it dry. Blais wishes he has the gluten free plate- Not Gluten Free But Wishing I Was Cause That Plate Looks Better BURN!
Pads: “...that sweet onion is just melting in my mouth.” Colicchio likes the acidity and in the kitchen Schlow scarfs it down and says it’s cooked perfectly.
Finally the other two teams get some play-someone has ordered from their menus but only three from Mel King, 2008 and Who Is James Rigato and one. ONE from Generic, Mei and Aww Lil Dougie.
Mei Lin is pissed off but: “If we make sure our fucking food tastes good, we're not going home.”
Blais: "Why do a salad when so much is on the line? And now I’m anxious. I’m anxious for Doug’s anti-pasti.”
He’s anxious and Doug is nervous and Not Anne Hathaway says it looks a lot like cole slaw.
(See what I mean about her?)
TRANSLATION- Slow your roll with the comments, this is my show.
Blais proclaims it’s tasty. Whew!
Generic’s entree takes the form of a polenta cake for Not Anne, everyone else gets:
Mei’s branzino looks beautiful:
Finally Who is James Rigato, 2008 and Mel King get some play.
Blais: This “looks a lot better than is sounds…”
Blais says it’s from a different era. The Swayze era, perhaps?
Not Anne loves her gluten-free version of Mel King’s dish. Much better than Mexikosher’s:
2008’s dish is met with-
Born & Bred realizes the veggiea on her dish are overcooked towards the end of the night and she didn’t bring any extra. That’s not gonna bode well...
After the jump we learn that perhaps Annoyed Aaron’s messy station is his own fault- apparently he leaves his stuff everywhere and then says things like “Which one of you stole my tasting spoon?” because that’s what someone would do, steal a tasting spoon.
And spoons are in short supply in a restaurant.
If this guy thinks he can come over here and make me a meal and mess up my tiny kitchen and leave his his goddamn anonymous black baseball hats lying around he has another thing coming and it’s not me because he is
I think I understand what’s happening here.
Emmy Rossum was in the movie PHANTOM OF THE OPERA. Singing. She has an amazing, operatic voice; has actually sun on several soundtracks and can probably crack a wine glass with a High C if you give her a shot at it.
But who starred, sang and won an Oscar in LES MISERABLE? Anne Hathaway.
And who does Emmy Rossum look like? Yeah.
So now she’s in Shameless which I haven’t seen and people like (Pooler Brownie loves it) but you gotta think- that shit bothers Emmy Rossum. She thought she’d get that role. I certainly did.
Hell I bet they showed a photo of Anne Hathaway for a minute Emmy thought it was a photo of HER! Hathaway- "America’s Sweetheart" with the bigger eyes and bigger mouth got the part.
Hathaway who is four years older than Emmy!
So, now here’s Emmy complaining about uncharred fennel. It should have been charred!
She should have been Fantine!
The Phaaaaaaantom of Anne Hathaway is theeeeeeere, inside her miiiiiimd.
When Born & Bred’s plate arrives
Blais likes the flavor, Not Anne Hathaway thought it wasn’t that bad.
Schlow joins them at their table and they all agree that Annoyed Aaron killed it and if Mexikosher didn’t have immunity he’d be out.
Aww Lil Dougie didn’t have the prettiest salad but it was delicious.
Pads thinks 2008 and Mel King “are safe” which prompts this from Blais-
In a rare move, Pads introduces Not Anne Hathaway to the chefs she thanks them for the accommodation of her gluten allergy.
I told you they’d make a good couple…
Schlow said the diners have spoken- the winning team is-
Colicchio makes it a point of saying that Mexikosher's ravioli was the weakest course and if they didn’t sell that many, he would be going home. He neglects to mention the immunity. Hmmm...
Blais tells the orange team they need to work on putting together a menu but Pads announces they liked their dishes so they’re safe.
Now the bad news-
Colicchio grills Born & Bred like she grilled the vegetables.
Born & Bred proclaimed the vegetables tasted were good and she liked them a lot.
Blais: “There’s a difference between standing behind your dish and being honest when they’re annihilated." Oh.
Blais told LaMalfa her fennel lacked sauce and char and really reminded him of mediocre room service.
Colicchio questions Who Is James Rigato over the proper oil to vinegar equation. (It's 3-1 for those of you keeping score at home.)
But Who Is James Rigato? He’s someone who has his own idea of “what It-Tal-Yon” means to him and Oh! Suddenly a bus has arrived so he can throw his teammates under it:
“I was a little bit ruled out as far as red meat and a different approach and team harmony became an issue, maybe to my detriment with that dish.”
He says he thought his dish was seasoned well “maybe they weren’t Top Chef quality.”
Pads nods as if you to say- you understand the reality TV show rule- we think you’re wrong, you realize, apologize and accept that instead of standing by your vegetables that, earlier in the kitchen, you mentioned were overcooked. Damn, Born & Bred you know two chefs are going home!!!
The ones Pads asks to pack their knives and go are-
LaMalfa and Who Is James Rigato.
Wow (and secretly whew.)
Colicchio inserts a salt lick into the wound by saying they got lost in their dishes and they had seen them before and James’ tattoos are excessive.
LaMalfa says she’s wants another chance. And she’s hoping to get that in Last Chance Kitchen-
OH SNAP! ARE THEY DOING THAT THIS SEASON?!
Okay, just checked, hasn’t started yet. Phew. I don't have the bandwidth for that yet, yo!
But wait! Annoyed Aaron is losing another confidante!
Who Is James Rigato: “Keep in touch.”
Who Was James Rigato?
He was a chef that should have done "a louder, more seasonal dish.”
He’s 29. He’s young. He has a lot of learn. He’s gonna "go back to Michigan and put" his "best food forward."
And then he’s gonna get a tattoo of that foot on his foot.
The chef’s go head to head in in the Quickfire and they end up in...Watertown???
At the Assembly Square Mall?
Maybe they’ll cook in Bed Bath and Beyond?
OH that reminds me, I gotta buy some scrubby gloves which also reminds me- I’m gonna come out with a new album: MC Scrubby Gloves!
First single? Lather.
You'll all get a free cassette single though cause I know your name! Till next time, Poolers!
Splitz- Mei Lin
Kyle- wil.i.am and Mei Lin
LB- 2008 and Mei Lin
Meriden- will.i.am and Mel King
Rich E.- Aww Lil Dougie and Mei Lin
Colucci- Aww Lil Dougie
Jenna- Mei Lin
Mari- Born & Bred and Mei Lin
Kat- Born & Bred
Keith- Aww Lil Dougie and will.i.am
Martha- will.i.am and Mei Lin
Karen Logue- Aww Lil Dougie and Mei Lin
Jet- will.i.am and Mei Lin
Brownie- Mel King
Lucy- Aww Lil Dougie and Mel King
Holly- Generic and Mei Lin
Greg- 2008 and will.i.am
Q- Mei Lin
Elli P.- Annoyed Aaron
KK- Mei Lin
Ed Kearns- Aww Lil Dougie and Mel King
Me- Born & Bred