1/10/2013 10:38:00 AM

Top Chef Seattle Episode 10: Restaurant Wars Part 1

Image via Bravo
So we're down to the final eight and Stefan is lonely without his morning smoking friend John. Wolfgang Puck is back for this week's challenge and it's to create a dish highlighting ginger in fifteen minutes. It's a Canada Dry challenge, naturally. As they're mid-prep, Stefan calls Sheldon's wok- fried ginger skirt steak a little too pedestrian and Woflgang later agrees. He puts it on the bottom along with Handlebar Josh's white chocolate and ginger soup. He asks what's the opposite of overwhelmed? Underwhelmed. Yup.

His favorites were Brooke's ginger caramel squid, Stefan's Ahi tuna with lemongrass and ginger vinaigrette and Lizzie's simple but well balanced watermelon and ginger soup. Brooke wins.

They bring out Danny Meyer to judge the elimination challenge and it's part one of Restaurant Wars. This season is different because each chef must come up with a complete restaurant concept along with a dish that represents it for this week's challenge, Bite of Seattle, and the two best will head up next week's Restaurant Wars (Part 2).

There are four sous chefs back to help. Everyone wants Kuniko and they're fighting to share her. Sheldon immediately takes Chrissy as his Filipino sister. Stefan wants Carla, he used to want to strangle (or shank) her but she's fast.

Danny Meyer tells us he met Tom at a big food event 25 years ago. Danny remembers that Tom cooked sea urchin with crab meat and mashed potatoes back in the day when he had hair (with pictures to prove it!)  and that's why Danny first wanted to meet Tom. Tom still does that dish.

Handlebar Josh's concept is Bistro George (named after his father) and his dish is seared rib eye with cauliflower puree and mushroom red wine sauce. Kristen's concept is formal French with a spin and she serves an onsen egg with camembert sauce that was a huge hit. Sheldon's concept is modern Filipino "Herbano" named after his grandfather and he makes a sour tamarind soup with pork belly, shrimp and fish. These three are on top.

The bottom three are Micah, Josie and Lizzie. Micah's concept is RAW with salmon, snapper, himachi, squid, scallop and mackerel that sounds like an overstuffed rainbow roll. Danny Meyer makes the point that we're already working in a context of really good sushi and if you're not adding something to that conversation then who needs it. Tom nods furiously in agreement and so do we.

Josie's concept is Home 305, as in Miami. They all like the concept but the Puerco asado (roast pork) and black bean chorizo croquette was dry and flavorless. The judges clearly hate Josie. She takes forever to get the food on their plates and Tom says "the Josie show" time and time again forgets the basics. Lizzie's concept is modern Italian farmhouse kitchen and she served a mustard green canderli (an Italian dumpling) that wasn’t' cooked enough. Even though Brooke's matzo ball was "offensive to [Gail's] people" and Stefan's dish was incohesive, the two of them are safe.

Kristen and Sheldon win and the next week they will face off against each other as executive chefs in their restaurants that will open in less than 48 hours. They have to staff their kitchens with the rest of the chefs before they know who's kicked off. Somehow the teams end up boys against girls.

Micah loses. His concept died in Season Six of Sex and the City. Sorry, boys.

Let the games begin! May the odds be ever in your favor.

1 comment :

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