I Hate Jill Zarin Top Chef All Stars Jan 6, 2010
Why do I care so much? I really love this show and when all of these great chef’s get booted off and the lazy, slow and less talented Jamie gets to stick around its frustrating for viewers.
I loved the Quick Fire Challenge, Chef Tom Colicchio prepared a dish as quickly as he cold and the contestants will have that same amount of time to make their best dish. After a mere eight and a half minutes, Chef Tom had prepared a nice fish dish. Chef Tom said that this was the first and last time he’d ever do this, I’m not sure if he meant cooking at all or cooking with a clock on him, but I think he should do it more often. I liked this challenge.
The chefs all commented on how wonderfully organized and methodical Chef Tom was with each move carefully orchestrated as he expertly prepared his masterpiece. The chefs who tasted the dish agreed that it was delicious and then that same time 8:37 exactly was put on the clock and the contest was on. The only real instruction given to the chef’s was to avoid preparing an uncooked dish for obvious reasons.
I’m not a fan of Marcel but it was a genius move to go and swipe the remaining fish from Chef Tom’s table rather than join the gang scrambling into the kitchen pushing each other to secure ingredients. Even Tre who is not a fan of Marcel’s said he had to respect him for that. I don’t know about “respect” Tre but I’ll give Marcel points for thinking of it first.
When the eight and a half minutes were up, Angelo was called out for doing exactly what he was told not to do, prepare a dish that required no cooking. Angelo along with Dale’s soggy noodle and Jamie’s one clam were all on the bottom.
As promised, Top Chef All Stars stakes are higher than ever, Padma announced that the winner of this challenge would not only win immunity, something they all covet, but they’d also win a brand new car! Marcel’s fish dish utilizing Tom’s leftover ingredients and Richard who made a foie gras dish landed in the top three but winner Mike Isabella’s fish won him a Toyota Prius and immunity.
The Elimination Challenge involved all thirteen chefs preparing a lunch tasting menu in a Chinese Restaurant in Chinatown. As the chefs went back to their home away from home and discussed what they would prepare, I always want to scream at the TV as some of the chefs volunteer to do dining room duty, expediting or even offer to prepare more than one dish.
I really don’t understand why Top Chef requires them to do this part, it really isn’t fair that a few of them have to take their attention away from just preparing their dish and handle other parts of the service. This has been the downfall of so many chefs that I would have thought by now, Top Chef Producers would learn how unfair this practice can be for the chefs. It is frustrating for viewers because I would have liked to see how the challenge would play out on a level playing field.
As the camera focused on Casey volunteering to handle the front of the house, I knew something was going to go wrong but when she purchased a huge bag of chicken feet it was clear that she was doomed. What on earth was this woman thinking? I’m all for going big or going home, but chicken feet are difficult to cook to begin with, then for Casey to abandon her station and allow someone else to take over the cooking was not the smartest thing she’s ever done. Clearly Antonia wasn’t going to focus on Casey’s dish when she had her own to worry about. Antonia also put her name on another dish with Jamie leaving her no time to even get any of Casey’s dishes up to the dining room.
I cannot believe that 13 chefs can’t get food out of the kitchen. As Casey was serving what little food was coming out of the kitchen, she realized that none of her chicken feet dishes were coming out, that should have been her first clue that no one was going to help her get her dish out. At that point, she just should have tossed the chicken feet out and not served anything and by right, she would have been safe just like Jamie had been for serving absolutely nothing.
This challenge was a complete fiasco, Chef Tom even had to come down into the kitchen to tell the chefs to get moving and get more food up to the diners. As the trays with very little food began to circulate the dining room, the diners were even grabbing plates off the tray just so that they would get something to eat. One diner noted that they were giving the small amount of food to the children and the adults were going without. They made it sound like they hadn’t eaten in days and had to ration the food. It was almost comical until you remember that these are supposed to be 13 of the finest chefs in the country and they can’t seem to feed a dining room full of guests.
Probably the most annoying scene was Dale taking time out to wipe some dirt off of his shoe and explaining that he was getting 12-13 dishes out at a time. As everyone else was running around like chicken missing their feet because they were sitting on Casey’s station being ignored, Dale was taking his sweet time but making his dishes perfect.
Another problem with this challenge was that speed wasn’t being judged, the chefs were instructed that they were to feed all of these people but no points were taken off if you only sent up enough food to feed the judges as the diners weren’t part of the judging process.
The top four chefs called in to judges table were Tiffany, Angelo, Fabio and Dale. These four chefs were not in the dining room, were not expediting food and all made just one dish. When will these chefs learn? It was frustrating watching Dale get the win because he clearly did not hustle in the kitchen, he didn’t care that diners were not getting served and walking out.
The bottom five chefs who were called into judges table, Casey and Carla, who were handling the dining room, Antonia and Jamie, who both prepared two dishes and Tre who prepared a dessert. This is classic Top Chef injustice. Why are viewers the only ones who see this coming?
I was hoping that Tre would have performed better on Top Chef All Stars, he seems to be in the bottom more than I would have expected but I do thank the judges for keeping Tre around as he is nice to look at! His dessert dish was a risk and could have been a success but it required refrigeration rather than a hot kitchen and didn’t set up properly.
While we don’t see the entire judges table, I really wish Casey would have explained that she was not allowed to prepare her dish properly because she was working the dining room. Antonia really could have said more as well, she knew she wasn’t going home for the bad green bean dish she had prepared with Jamie because the judges agreed that they did like her shrimp toast dish. Why didn’t Antonia take any responsibility for dropping the ball on Casey’s dish? Antonia would have been better off declining to take on the preparation of Casey’s dish as she failed there and she failed to take any responsibility for the dish she prepared with Jamie.
Jamie sent out two bad dishes and after sending out nothing in the previous two elimination challenges, Jamie remains a contestant. Casey took a risk, volunteered to handle the dining room, had no one preparing her dish in the kitchen and was sent home. The good news is that there is no way that Jamie is going to win this whole thing, but as each chef goes home before Jamie, it becomes frustrating to viewers.
Tonight on Bravo is a new episode of The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills followed by Andy Cohen’s Watch What Happens Live with guest Bethenny Frankel. I can’t wait to hear what she has to say about her stint on Skating With The Stars.
There was an “incident” on Twitter yesterday that I need to mention. Ramona Singer retweeted a link to a You-Tube video that has since been removed but it shows LuAnn de Lesseps daughter Victoria rolling what appears to be a marijuana cigarette and using vulgar language including the “N” word.
It got posted on You Tube but the Twitter member who sent it to Ramona, someone named Olivia Otterstedt also sent it to LuAnn, Jill and to Sonja. This Olivia person claims to be a 15 year old singer from Sweden and had apparently been communicating with Ramona on Facebook. She asked Ramona to retweet a song that she was sending and I really believe that Ramona was retweeting what she thought was that song.
I’m not excusing Ramona, it was a really stupid thing to do and she did delete the tweet as soon as she realized what she had done, then when she got quite a few tweets from angry Tweeters, she responded like this:
@ramonasinger it was an accident and i am appalled that it happened
I’m appalled that it happened as well, I wonder how long it would have been out there if Ramona hadn’t done what she did, there are a whole lot of questions, who created and posted that on You-Tube? Did Victoria know she was being filmed? LuAnn has got to be mortified! Ramona is taking a lot of heat for this incident and everyone tip-toes around the kids but I don’t think that Victoria de Lesseps, at 17 years old, should be let off the hook here either.
We knew that there was an issue last season with Victoria sneaking out of the house by climbing out her window, she even broke her arm doing it, and obviously LuAnn has her hands full with a rebellious child. LuAnn is ignoring the incident and I don’t expect any of those involved to mention it again, I’m sure they’re hoping it will just go away.
On January 3, LuAnn posted this:
@CountessLuann: I’m sharing with you Victoria’s first published piece in Womanity! I’m so proud of her. http://fb.me/PivGOGgI
After the Ramona incident:
@CountessLuann: Why thank you! We are having a blast here in Atlantic City!
@CountessLuann: Working on my new music video in a great location with fabulous people.
And a tweet from Kelly Bensimon who also happens to be in Atlantic City, possibly the ladies are filming there? From Morocco to Atlantic City, the New York Housewives do get around!
@Kikilet: @soulcycle I wore my Soulcycle thermal in AC and I won money at Blackjack table #goodlucktee
Six tweets from Kelly that include SoulCycle, I sure hope they’re paying her for all this advertising.
@BravoAndy An Open Letter to Andy Cohen @ http://look.ac/fMz9vi
Until Next Time….