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May 28, 2012 09:57 PM

Top Chef Canada, Season 2, Episode 12 (spoilers)

The last episode before the finale. The final four.

Quickfire: Pies. The chefs have to make two pies, one sweet and one savory for Marc Thuet and his wife. David makes cipate with puff pastry and rabbit for his savory pie and peach and blueberry pie with mascarpone sour cream ice cream for his sweet pie. Trevor makes an apple bacon tart with walnut crust and blue cheese cream for his sweet pie and chanterelle, caramelized onion and foie pie for his savory. Carl makes a peach and blueberry pie for his sweet pie and a cheddar, ham and chanterelle pie with duck fat pastry for his savory. Jonathan makes an apple pie with sharp cheddar pastry for his sweet and a potato, caramelized leek and bacon pie with dill and bacon fat pastry for his savory pie.
The top: Carl and Trevor.
The bottom: David and Jonathan.
The winner: Carl, who wins a custom CaesarStone counter for either work or home, worth $5,000, and for the runner-up Trevor, $3,000 and his apple bacon pie featured at Milestones.

Elimination: The chefs have to create a fashion-inspired lunch dish. And they get a sous chef from season 1. They draw knives. Carl gets Rob. Trevor gets Francois, David get Connie who he knows because their restaurants are part of the Le Germain hotel group. Jonathan gets Dusty who he worked with at Susur. Lisa then announces that the winner will get $10,000.
There's a fashion show at the Shops at Don Mills where they are cooking, which reinforces the theme of the challenge. Jennifer McLagan is the guest judge.
Jonathan makes a dim sum trio with uni in a mussel shell, prawn dumpling and jicama roll. Trevor makes a potato-crusted lamb loin with ratatouille and porcini foam. Carl makes a crispy Euro bass salad with zucchini aioli and roasted red pepper coulis. David makes nori-wrapped beef tenderloin with wasabi pea butter, celery root with veal jus glazed shallot and chive puree.

Judging: Chef McLagan announces that the winner is Carl, who wins $10,000 and a place in the finale. Trevor is the next chef to make it to the finale. And it's between David and Jonathan for the last spot.
They liked David's look but not the food. They found Jonathan's food disappointing and didn't like the look either.
And David is sent home (probably for the chive puree) and Jonathan goes on to the finale.

Oh no, David! I had such hopes. Oh well, at least you won all that cash. I was pretty torn between who I thought/hoped would go home. I couldn't decide who I preferred because they're both great.

I thought the challenge was a bit lame for the last Elimination challenge. The fashion connection was tenuous at best. I wish the challenge had been more culinary-based, less gimmicky, so the chefs could show their stuff. A mystery basket (Chopped-style) challenge would have been great here. It was nice to see the chefs from season 1 again, though I would think they might be used in the finale instead. I thought the comment from Carl about making something that's never been seen before was funny. I'm pretty sure Sarah made a rye-bread-encrusted fish in the Top Chef Texas finale. And his frustration with the server was hilarious in a sad way. Why didn't the server just write it down? What kind of servers are they using? She didn't know what aioli is?

Looks like the finale is fraught with trouble. Good luck chefs!

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  1. I have to admit I am glad that Carl won, I have been silently rooting for him ever since the judges told him that he was soulless :p

    1. I must try that pie at Milestones!

      Although I tried one of the dishes from season 1 (a black cod, I think) and it was not great.

      I liked Rob in season 1 but he needed to shave that beard last night.

      I'm happy with the final 3.

      1 Reply
      1. re: cellophane_star

        Funny, I thought the opposite, that the beard made him look, umm, not 12..... I liked seeing Dusty again.

      2. I knew he was done for the second they tried to spit out the chive thingie. Inedible always loses. I'm a little sad, because I really liked how he came across - enthusiastic and playful.

        I'm not a huge fan of Carl, just because it seems like he takes himself super seriously. I don't dislike him, but I'd rather see one of the others win.

        1 Reply
        1. re: piccola

          Not always, episode 3 - they eliminated Sarah but kept Xavier even after the judges basically barfed it up. Both were bad, but based on reactions I would have expected Xavier to be gone....Of course earlier they sort of indicated earlier they "expected" Xavier to do better because he was talented... which is why they kept Xavier over Sarah on that competition. To be fair, if a judge cannot even eat - and have to barf up the food.... he probably should be eliminated at that point :o

        2. Loved, loved the quickfire. Wanted to eat every single thing and the judging was nail biting. I liked the idea of the elimination challenge but it didn't really seem to inspire the chefs like previous episodes'. David left with grace, he will be missed but he's done pretty well for himself. Jennifer McLagan was an interesting choice of guest judge for the haute cuisine challenge. I think Trevor's dish would have really appealed to her.

          Surprising to see Jonathan misstep on both quickfire and elimination this episode.

          I am a fan of Carl. It was a lot of fun watching him go head to head with Xavier on the chef skills competition and I thought it was very sporting of him to help Trevor get his fire going in the wild brunch challenge. He can make me soup and a sandwich any time.

          Trevor has done some great food and says some very smart and thoughtful things during the interviews, when he is not talking about himself..

          It is anyone's game!

          2 Replies
          1. re: pepper_mil

            I do remember the helping out on the fire -- it shows class.

            1. re: pepper_mil

              I totally agree.

              I read somewhere that someone thought they should have had Jeannie Beker as the guest judge. Even a fashionista judge would not be enough to hold together such a lame challenge idea.

              I'm looking forward to seeing what these guys can do when given the freedom to do their food. Though I would have liked to have seen what David would have produced when freed from the various themes/restrictions. I love the way he throws himself into each challenge with such passion (and crazy ideas). I haven't been to his restaurant in a long time. Maybe it's time to revisit. I think the experience will have reinvigorated his creativity.
              I'm also excited to see what Jonathan will do. He has had some great ideas.