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Top Chef Season Finale

rumor has it: filming the season finale at Commander's Palace in NOLA tomorrow (1/15)

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  1. I wonder if Emeril will be a guest judge.

    1. For the current season? I'm not sure if the family that owns Commander's Palace would want Emeril in their restaurant.

      29 Replies
      1. re: Ericandblueboy

        The Brennan's are gracious hosts.
        The kitchen with the huge old oak trees is magnificent. I could think of many potential local judges.
        (Maybe they could stuff that new Brit dude into an empty crypt across the street.)

        1. re: Ericandblueboy

          I was under the impression that Lagasse left on good terms with the Brennans.

          1. re: LabRat

            They said all kinds of nice things about him on the FN Chefography.

              1. re: bermudagourmetgoddess

                or Paul Prudhomme or Frank Brigtsen

                Commander's Palace can also be seen here:
                http://www.hulu.com/watch/22907/after...

                1. re: edible complex

                  Emeril will be a judge at Commanders, but its not the final show.

                  1. re: baldwinwood

                    Is he gonna say "bam" or "kick it up a notch" on the show?

                    "bam, that tastes like %$#%'

                    1. re: baldwinwood

                      see my below comment from 1/18 about Besh being a judge at the finale.

                  2. re: bermudagourmetgoddess

                    just read it was Besh as one of the judges for finale.

                2. re: LabRat

                  <I was under the impression that Lagasse left on good terms with the Brennans.>

                  He did. Ella Brennan, the matriarch, loves him.

                3. re: Ericandblueboy

                  this season.

                  possible spoiler:
                  rumor has it Carla, Hosea and another guy were spotted in the Fr. Qtr.; not sure if that means they are finalists or are here assisting finalist.

                  1. re: edible complex

                    Jaime and Jeff were spotted at the Whole Foods while filming in NOLA

                    1. re: edible complex

                      Someone please correct me if I'm wrong, but don't they keep the "losers" around until the final and have them act like they are still competing so that the public doesn't know who is actually still a contestant?

                      1. re: viperlush

                        I recall reading on another thread about the "sequester house" videos on Bravo's website....so yes, I'm assuming EVERYONE is still living somewhere near the house during filming. And I would suspect at least the top 8-10 would have been brought to NOLA if that's where they're filming the finale. Especially since the final 2 or 3 usually get sous chef picks from those that just left before them.

                      2. re: edible complex

                        It will be annoying if Jamie sneaks into the finals.

                        1. re: Withnail42

                          True. But it's quite possible that Jamie will make it to the finals. Who could have imagined that the equally annoying Lisa would become a finalist in Season 4.

                          1. re: Hurner

                            She reminds me of Lisa not just for the obvious reason but as a mediocre cook with a bad attitude.

                            1. re: Withnail42

                              I'm surprised you say that. From all of the chefs in this season, I would like to try Jamie's food over the others.

                              But I agree with you on the attitude.

                              1. re: Miss Needle

                                You must realy, really love scallops.

                                1. re: Phaedrus

                                  Ha ha. : )

                                  Yes, I actually love scallops But aside from her overusing my favorite seafood, I thought her food was interesting and her flavors fit in with what I like to eat (the bruschetta from that canned food challenge aside). Even her napoleon of ricotta and stone fruit that bombed sounded good -- guess the execution of it was off.

                                  1. re: Miss Needle

                                    i agree. jamie seems annoying but her food sounds good. the corn soup and the vaduvan carrot puree and all,

                              2. re: Withnail42

                                Attitudes and whatnot aside; Jamie's food seems to have put her squarely in the top handful and I can certainly see her getting to the finals and I think she has a legitimate shot to win it (though I think Stefan will, ultimately). Comparatively (and, honestly, in general) I wouldn't describe her cooking as "mediocre."

                                1. re: ccbweb

                                  only her attitude is like lisa's - who i did feel squeaked by. although she may have been a standout this season, who knows.

                                  1. re: ccbweb

                                    Perhaps you're right. But her dishes have not really intrigued me. Not that I have tasted any sitting on the couch watching the show as I do.

                                    For the record I am not a scollop fan.

                                    1. re: Withnail42

                                      I guess I'm biased as I live 4 blocks from Jamie's restaurant but I don't see the reason for all the hate on her. I would think that her responses in the interviews are answers to questions not just off-the-cuff remarks especially since she says these things with an exasperated smile rather than a sourpuss whine. I guess I see it as she's a little bummed which I could totally understand. Plus she seems like she can recognize her mistakes like with the egg and the napoleon which is something that Lisa couldn't.

                                      1. re: Withnail42

                                        That I agree with quite a bit, actually; I haven't been intrigued by much of it either. That's fairly true of most of it this season for most of the chefs.

                          2. re: Ericandblueboy

                            I would be very interested to know why you think this.

                            Seemed like he did a fine job running their kitchen for many years.

                            1. re: ccbweb

                              I was just asking a question. I knew Emeril worked there and then he left. Simply didn't know whether he would be invited back.

                              1. re: Ericandblueboy

                                I was asking for clarification only because I thought the way you wrote the sentence implied that there was conflict between Lagasse and the Brennans. I was surprised at the idea. Thanks for following up.

                          3. A good friend of mine works at August and said that a couple weeks ago the Bravo crew was in the restaurant checking things out and filming. Perhaps they are going to several restaurants to confuse the rumor mill, or maybe quickfire at one place, elimination at another, something to try to get a lot of exposure for New Orleans.

                            4 Replies
                            1. re: ktb615

                              I've been hoping they would film a season in New Orleans. Perhaps this is a prelude to that? Because they really should do a season here. It's a win-win for everyone involved in my opinion.

                              1. re: ktb615

                                They need to find kitchens they can use.. that's a pretty important part of this - and that kitchen has to shut down while they film, so a restaurant or hotel would lose a decent amount of revenue.. its a complex deal..

                                1. re: grant.cook

                                  Maybe they can set up to film on a Sunday/Monday or something when the restaurant is closed. Obviously, what you note is going to be something to factor in but hopefully they can both maximize the plug for the restaurant and minimize the effect on service times.

                                  Indeed a complex deal.

                                2. re: ktb615

                                  have heard Bravo has been very kind to August.

                                3. This just in, guest judge for the finale.............................Emeril Lagasse!

                                  http://eater.com/archives/2009/01/top...

                                  11 Replies
                                  1. re: KTinNYC

                                    Ooooh! "According to the press release, on the second to last episode, the cheftestants will be narrowed from four to three in a "shocking twist that changes the face of game". Changes. The. Face. Of. The. Game."

                                    Shocking twist!!!! Lots of exclamation marks!!! will be inherent in their ads!!! for the final show!!!! ;-)

                                    But HEY! This I like in the actual press release: "For the first time ever, fans will have a say in a future episode of "Top Chef." During part one of the finale, viewers will be asked to vote on what they'd like to see in a Quickfire challenge featured in season six of "Top Chef," with voting on www.BravoTV.com and via text message."

                                    1. re: LindaWhit

                                      If the Bravo text messagers get the word, the answer will be
                                      "Cook something for Christian Siriano inspired by his hair."

                                      I really don't want TC to become an internet driven popularity contest.

                                      1. re: shallots

                                        I'm pretty sure what the press release is saying is that the TC producers or judges or Lee Ann Wong or all of them together will come up with several ideas for viewers to vote on - not that we come up with the ideas.

                                        But I guess we'll see.

                                        1. re: LindaWhit

                                          The text votes are always the same, viewers get 4 choices and they pick their favorite.

                                      2. re: LindaWhit

                                        did I miss the Viewer Vote In for the Quickfire?

                                        1. re: edible complex

                                          They asked if we wanted to see future contestants cook with snake, cactus, or kangaroo, but we didn't see an answer (to reserve the surprise for said contestants, I presume).

                                          ETA: You can vote online, too: http://www.bravotv.com/top-chef/vote -- I don't see anything about when the polls close.

                                          1. re: momjamin

                                            "The Promotion begins at 9:00 PM (ET) on November 12, 2008 and will end at 12:01 PM (ET) on the day following the exhibition of the last first-run episode (i.e., the finale episode) of the fifth cycle of the series Top Chef (the "Show"), which is currently anticipated to occur on or before March 25, 2009 (collectively, the "Promotion Period")."

                                            1. re: edible complex

                                              Interesting. I just voted once (putting in a non-existent cell phone #, thankyouverymuch!), and I got this message:

                                              Thanks for voting! You have submitted your 10 votes for the week.
                                              You have 0 web votes left *. Vote Again!

                                              * Please note that the counter may not accurately reflect the number of times you have voted online if your computer crashes, you don't accept cookies, you delete your cookies before you have placed a total of 30 web votes, you vote online at one time in the evening and then come back to your computer to vote more later in the evening, you powerdown your computer in between placing all 30 of your web votes, or for other technical reasons. Please note that regardless of how many times you vote or the number of votes reflected by the web vote counter, none of your web votes in excess of 30 will be counted.

                                              I guess my situation was "for other technical reasons." :-)

                                              1. re: LindaWhit

                                                got the same message, but was able to vote again and again...

                                            2. re: momjamin

                                              Hmmm... snake, cactus, kangaroo? Top Chef Australia?

                                              1. re: ktb615

                                                That's what I was thinking with the kangaroo.....but with the snake/cactus, maybe they're going to the Southwest?

                                        1. I was coincidentally vacationing in NOLA from January 10-15 and ran into Stephan as well as all the judges and the producers of Top Chef.

                                          I ran into Stephan during our layover in LAX and he was on our flight to NOLA. I said hi to him while waiting at the gate for boarding. Fun to watch on TV but I have to say, in person, he's a tool.

                                          On the shuttle from the airport to our hotel, one of the other shuttle riders mentioned that Jaime was on her flight. Not sure where she came from but as of Saturday, Jan 10, both Stephan and Jamie were in NOLA.

                                          No sightings of any of the rest of the cast all week - that is until we went to dinner at Restaurant August on Wednesday night. When seated, Chef Besh came out and introduced himself to us! Very cool. Then about 10 minutes later, Tom, Padma, Gail, a few other judges and producers all walked in. They lingered at the bar for a few minutes and then were led to the middle room for dinner. (Restaurant August has a large front dining room and two smaller dining rooms in the back.) No cameras, just the judges having dinner. My boyfriend had the pleasure of being able to see Padma all through dinner. lol.

                                          Anyways, it made for an exciting end to a great vacation.

                                          4 Replies
                                          1. re: lamster

                                            very cool. it doesn't surprise me that stefan is a bit of a tool!
                                            :)

                                            1. re: lamster

                                              He's a tool on TV, but he's talented. What makes you think everyone wants to say hi to you anyway?

                                              1. re: Ericandblueboy

                                                the fact that they went on tv to try and get famous.

                                                but i do agree he's talented.

                                            2. So, so far we have John Besh for the finale, Emeril for the penultimate show, and the third-to-last (next week) is Wylie Dufresne and Jacques Pepin (Jacques Pepin!). Any other news about upcoming guests?

                                              1 Reply