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Top Chef - D.C. - Ep. #6 - 07/21/10 (Spoilers)

So, what's in store for the cheftestants this week? Hmmm...Andrea's said in the last two ECs, she's been in the top, so she's in "a good place". Rut-roh - is that foretelling what's going to happen to her?

Michelle Bernstein is guest judge for both the QF and EC....and some "different" foods are on the table (i.e., food items not on the dinner table every day throughout the U.S. <g>). And it seems Andrea and Michelle Bernstein are local rivals. Even more rut-roh! LOL The choices of foods are:

Foie Gras
Crocodile
Frog's Legs
Wild Boar
Llama
Duck Testicles
Ostrich
Rattlesnake
Duck Tongue
Emu Eggs (I know I'm missing one, but I can't remember it!)
And thanks to bignickpsu, he reminded me below that the final choice was Yak. :-)

They draw knives to see the order in which they choose their food and they start to cook. But SURPRISE! Padma comes in 10 minutes into the challenge, and asks them ALL to take over the proteins to their left...what fun....and frustrating for the cheftestants! LOL

Those in the bottom group? Stephen (Frog's Legs), Alex (Ostrich), and Andrea (Wild Boar). So would Michelle Bernstein really throw Andrea under the bus because they're local competitors with their restaurants? I hope not. But interestingly, Andrea's getting a LOT of camera time....Elves, are you hinting?

And in the top group? Kelly (Emu Egg Omelette), Tamisha (Duck Tongue), and Amanda (Llama). And the winner? It's Kelly! And she has immunity for the EC.

And now on to the Elimination Challenge - cooked in the TC kitchen but served elsewhere. And what do they have to do? A cold entree. They're divided into two Groups - A & B. Each group will serve to the judges and the other group's cheftestants - a judging of their peers. Kelly will eat with BOTH groups (and doesn't cook for this EC). They get a short ride on the U.S.S. Sequoia, used for strategy meetings by Pres. Kennedy during the Cuban Missile Crisis, among its many uses while in service. But where are they finishing their dishes the next and presenting/eating the food? Didn't catch that.

Each chefestant judging group will pick one top dish and one bottom dish from the group they're judging.

While they're sailing, Kevin notices Angelo giving ideas and help to other cheftestants and speaks to Kenny about it. Kenny wonders if Angelo is looking to manipulate other chefs' insecurities. Hmm.....didn't several of us say that last week? ;-)

And back from commercial and poll question (which is "would you ever eat duck testicles?" My response would probably be "if I didn't know what they were, yes, I would! LOL) And the focus is on Andrea yet again, as well as Angelo's discussions about dishes with other cheftestants. Angelo himself brings that up in a confessional - he says rumors in the house are that he's playing tactical games...he says all he's doing is playing to win. Ummm, wouldn't that *include* tactical games, Angelo?

GROUP A - Amanda, Kevin, Kenny, Alex, and Ed. Kevin is up for the winning dish, and Kenny's dish is voted the worst.

GROUP B - Tamesha, Angelo, Tiffany, Andrea, and Stephen. Tiffany will be up for the win in Group B, and Tamesha is up for elimination. Interestingly, both Tamesha and Stephen's dishes weren't well received by the cheftestants - and they were "helped" by Angelo. Yet another Hmmmm......

Interestingly, in the Stew Room, Angelo tells Kenny that they were all in agreement that Kenny's dish was worst in Group A. Obviously, Kenny wasn't too happy about that! Padma asks Tiffany and Kevin to come in to JT. Chef Colicchio says the judges were in agreement with their peers as to their dishes being the best. And who's the winner? Kevin wins! He gets 6 nights at Hilton Hawaiian Village...that'll be a nice vacation for his family!

Padma asks them to send back Tamesha and Kenny. So I guess all the foreshadowing about Andrea was all for naught. :-) Hmmm, Padma's query to Kenny as to why he thinks he's there in the bottom? Kenny says he thinks it's because some of them are threatened by him...but Michelle Bernstein steps in and says that if she was to talk about the 17-25 components of his dish, it would "take until the end of the show." Could this be the end of the rivalry between Kenny and Angelo? I don't think so...I think it's Tamesha told to PYKAG.

Yup, it's Tamesha. Sorry to see her go. And Tiffany calls out Angelo in confessional about him having a lot of say in Tamesha's dish and that Tamesha should have had more control over her own dish - which Tamesha also said in confessional. She appreciated Angelo's mentorship, but realized that she should have had more control over her own dish.

And next week? They take over the Palm Restaurant...and Alex seems to abscond with the pea puree that was meant for everyone...and he's the only one to have it on his plate!

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  1. Hated hated hated this format. I'm not saying that the cheftestants didn't pick the appropriate "worst"dishes. I just think it would have been too easy for them to pick the folks strategically. Perhaps in this case, those two options meshed. I just don't like the potential for game playing having way too much influence on the week's outcome.

    I also did not like Bernstein in this episode. Maybe I was influenced by Angela.

    1. I think the missing one in the QF was Yak...

      1 Reply
      1. re: bignickpsu

        THANK you! Edited my list to add. :-)

      2. In other seasons they've never let the contestants in effect vote someone off the island. This is the second episode this season where unusual rules allowed strategy and game-playing to trump the cooking. Never done in previous seasons. Perhaps someone in Bravo decided that this will boost ratings.

        Bravo is very sensitive to viewer reactions. They monitor chat rooms and tailor their show to meet fan's postings.
        http://www.nytimes.com/2010/06/06/bus...

        5 Replies
        1. re: Brian S

          I'm pretty sure this has been done in at least one previous season. For some reason, I thought I remember comments from Stephan in the same type of challenge in Season 5.

          1. re: LindaWhit

            I agree with Brian S on this. I was going to post the same thing. I don't remember Stephan's comments, not that it didn't happen. I do remember the Miami episode where Joey said that this is a Howie dish in a blind tasting. They are really playing the drama card this year, the whole Angelo conspiracy theory has been touched on multiple times.

            1. re: James Cristinian

              They have done this type of switch before, but the cheftestants were not the ones determining best and worst, just giving opinions.

          2. re: Brian S

            "Bravo is very sensitive to viewer reactions. They monitor chat rooms and tailor their show to meet fan's postings"

            strongly disagree, how in the hell could someone like hosea win?

            1. re: epabella

              Tom Colicchio always seems to defend Bravo but if Bravo forced him to accept a winner of Bravo's choosing he would pack HIS knives and go and never come back.

          3. It's Andrea and Michelle who are rivals.

            3 Replies
            1. re: Trip Klaus

              Thanks - don't know why my brain got hung up on "Angela". :-) I've fixed it in the OP.

              1. re: LindaWhit

                Clearly Angelo must be whispering in your ear as well.

                1. re: Trip Klaus

                  Ick. ::::Grabbing the Q-Tips:::: :-)

            2. My family and I watch the show faithfully, but this is the first season where I feel like the producers have mailed it in, decided to be more like other "reality' shows. Last week's challenge was ood - no details at all, go ... - this week's was actually worse. Survivor Chef might have been more interesting if they'd made the dishes anonymous, or mixed up the names. I'd be happy with less intrigue, more talent.

              2 Replies
              1. re: paddys9

                I too thought it would have made more sense to have the guys cook their dishes and not let the judges know who cooked what. And agree w/ dmjordan that the switch in the quickfire was dumb. I'm surprised more people didn't go right for ostrich or wild boar which are pretty common these days.

                How much did Angelo really influence Tamisha with that dish? I know he was yapping a lot but did he suggest those combos at all? I thought it sounded horrible. Not a huge fan of fruit and fish anyway, but those scallops drowned in the rhubarb sauce just looked horrendous.

                1. re: Joanie

                  It didn't seem Angelo had much direct impact on Tamesha dish. They don't show Angelo actually affecting Tamesha recipe, compared to Stephen who got Asian ingredient advice from Angelo. So I think her gripe was more that his feedback failed her. He may have been complimenting her dish when she asked for his feedback, or given her failed direction when she had to choose between 2 directions to take. There is risk when you have competitor taste testing your dishes... like we saw Alex admit to not giving Amanda complete feedback. Goes to show you can't full trust your competition's feedback -- they where working in the kitchen with the group of 5 that they where going directly against for top and bottom consideration.