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Top Chef Masters: "What Would Brian Boitano Eat" (8/8/12) [***SPOILERS***]

A teppanyaki challenge for our contestants, but not before we see them cook sans stove and fire.

Chris lays into Art. Awesome! Did Art have it coming? Or do we hate on Chris now?

Mark Gaier goes home because the butler did it! Er, I mean, the BUTTER did it, or didn't do it.

Carry on.

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  1. "Chris lays into Art. Awesome! Did Art have it coming? Or do we hate on Chris now?"

    A little of both! Art did sort of have it coming, but Chris certainly could have handled it better. I still really like Chris though as you can tell he is super passionate about what he is doing and that is where the "bad behavior" is coming from.

    1 Reply
    1. re: twyst

      In Bravo's poll, 72% of responders were on Team Art, 28% on Team Chris. ;-)

      I'm inclined to think Cosentino has a hubris issue himself.

    2. I still hate Art. He seems so one dimensional. Shrimp & grits? I especially gaged when Art said, "I've kissed some ugly babies." and later we see him kissing Chris' head. When Art won, which I still can't believe, I was hoping Art's cheerleader would go home.

      On the other hand, the quick fire dishes were really inspiring.

      4 Replies
      1. re: Moon Cake

        " I especially gaged when Art said, "I've kissed some ugly babies." "

        1. re: huiray

          Because it essentially means he's being a bit of a phony.

          1. re: huiray

            Yeah, Art's comment sort of seemed like one of those "pitch a softball" " hit it out of the park" cutsie comments that aren't really all that cute.

            1. re: huiray

              It seemed so condescending towards Chris and then he actually kissed him. I think Chris is a more inventive and skilled chef, so Art being condescending made me gag.

          2. At least we know whatever happened to Bronson Pinchot.

            1. Chris may have been unnecessarily harsh, but given Art's previous behavior, I would have probably behaved similarly.

              5 Replies
              1. re: chicgail

                Apart from his name-dropping (weren't those also in Talking Heads rather than just in the open kitchen, or am I remembering wrongly?) I'm not sure I would call Art Smith's previous behavior *that* egregious, though...

                Krista Simmons (http://www.bravotv.com/top-chef-maste...) ID'ed Chris Cosentino as a "screamer", the sort that makes a diner squirm and who creates an uncomfortable situation all around. I had flashes of Alvin Leung screaming at his servers in front of the Gamesters in ATWI80P - but there AL was at the top of the hierarchy vs the situation in TCM..

                1. re: chicgail

                  But the gal from Venezuela still seems to absolutely LOVE Art. Can't quite figure out why other than she's from Venezuela and he's married to a Venezuelan.

                  1. re: DGresh

                    He makes her laugh. He probably speaks a little Spanish.


                    He needs to go away.....

                      1. re: wincountrygirl

                        I agree....maybe tonight's her night? :)

                        Then she can focus on her Taco Bell Cantina menu.....and maybe do something good there.

                2. I am not yet prepared to hate on Cosentino. And Art still drives me nuts.

                  Also, applause for flambe? Really? That gets applause? (Ooh...fire. He set alcohol on fire! Genius!) I have nothing against flambe and perhaps the dish was wonderful. I just don't get the applause.

                  8 Replies
                  1. re: debbiel

                    Maybe because he was the only one who did something that theatrical at the teppanyaki. Art's "flambé" was quite a large fire, a couple feet from the diners/judges, not that very modest small flambé one gets with a Crêpes Suzette at table-side, for example, unless the waiter really over-doused it with a vast amount of alcohol and he was leaning over the dish and set his hair on fire as well. :-)

                    Lorena Garcia's fried rice and Patricia Yeo's dancing probably came close. The "teppanyaki experience" is *supposed* to involve flying knives, slicing stuff in mid-air, juggling tricks, flying food, that sort of thing.

                    1. re: huiray

                      Eh, I get that he did something "theatrical." I just don't think it was applause worthy. Flying knives, slicing stuff in mid-air, that takes talent. But even I have done flambe, so it can't be all that impressive. :)

                      1. re: debbiel

                        I agree, I thought that was a bit gimmicky but it may have been one of the reasons he won.

                        Chris is a bit of a hot head but I can't blame him, Art is so annoying at times. I really enjoy Chris and his processes.

                        Their personalities clash.

                      2. re: huiray

                        I am not knowledgeable about that kind of restaurant, but I thought "fried rice" just seemed really pedestrian for this level of chef. A bowl of rice?

                        1. re: DGresh

                          You'd be shocked what a great chef can do with something very simple. I had some brussel sprouts at paul qui's restaurant last week that changed my whole outlook on what vegetables could be!

                          1. re: DGresh

                            The thing that irritated me about the fried rice is the fact that it is an American imitation of an Asian dish. It is not Asian at all and I got the feeling she thought she was putting her spin on a Japanese dish. Talk about a lack of food knowledge.

                            1. re: DGresh

                              But note that the guests - especially Susan Feniger - thought it was genius and, had it been properly seasoned, would've put it into the running for best dish of the night. Fried rice is simple, but that doesn't mean it can't taste amazing.

                              1. re: DGresh

                                Um, this is a chef that consults for Taco Bell..............

                          2. thanks so much for another great and invaluable recap from our beloved ipse.

                            1. In the Quickfire, I thought everyone was supposed to have raw seafood to work with - that lobster looked cooked! I can't recall who had it - either Mark or Clark from Arrows.

                              As for Chris and Art - Chris went a bit over the top in the EC, but Art's been a PITA throughout, and often acts like a pissy little child. If you act that way, you get treated that way.

                              And Art gets the win by pouring alcohol on the flattop and setting it aflame? And talking a lot? :-/

                              I liked the look of Cosetino's dish and preparation. I'm getting a kick out of Patricia Yeo, and not because she's now a local Boston chef. Her Stew Room story about how to keep her kitchen staff "up" by tossing candy at them so they get a bit of a sugar rush to finish service had me laughing. I really like her and hope she takes it.

                              When I saw Mark's scallop teppanyaki dish, I figured it would be him going home. There wasn't a lot there there.

                              7 Replies
                              1. re: LindaWhit

                                You're right, the lobster was obviously cooked. Maybe it was presented that way (on ice) and they weren't allowed to do anything else to it (I think it was a "no heat" challenge, not a "raw" challenge).

                                1. re: DGresh

                                  Ahh, good point on the "no heat" vs. raw challenge.

                                  1. re: DGresh

                                    I do believe the crawfish were cooked as well. Unless there's a new variety that are bright red from the water.

                                    It was a "no heat" challenge. Not all the proteins were raw.

                                    1. re: Dee S

                                      Raw crayfish carry deadly parasites, so I hope they were cooked or otherwise made edible!

                                      1. re: ennuisans

                                        12 cases in three years, all in Missouri, and only six other cases in all of recorded history, and all easily treated and not deadly. But thanks for trying to spread panic.

                                        1. re: acgold7

                                          Well I was trying to do no such thing, as I'm sure you know. I'll just let the last line of this article be my last word on the subject:


                                  2. re: LindaWhit

                                    "And Art gets the win by pouring alcohol on the flattop and setting it aflame? " --Thank you. Still don't get the appeal/applause/"extra credit"

                                    Also enjoying Patricia Yeo.

                                  3. Ok the only two things I know about ceviche is 1) it's a raw fish dish and 2) every chef on every competition show ever makes one whenever possible. Until now! Or did I just miss it?

                                    3 Replies
                                    1. re: ennuisans

                                      I thought Patricia made ceviche last week

                                      1. re: DGresh

                                        I meant just for the raw fish challenge.

                                      2. re: ennuisans

                                        That was my thought too, ennuisans. When they said fish and "no heat", my first thought was: "Oh great, 10 different ceviches"

                                      3. Thierry and Takashi are awesome.

                                        1. I really like Brian Boitano. It turns out he is a very nice guy and pretty knowledgable about food. He had a food show on for a while that I watched as a joke, but it turned out that I actually liked it.. Nice to see him doing well.

                                          3 Replies
                                          1. re: chicgail

                                            I kind of liked that show! Would like to see more of it.

                                            1. re: chicgail

                                              I remember that show. I also remember gagging at the thought of the show, but it ended up being way better than I expected it to be. Even one of the TCMs said they were surprised at his knowledge of food.

                                            2. I had no idea Brian Boitano was such a foodie - I thought he was a good judge.
                                              Couldn't believe Art won - but shrimp and grits did sound soooo tasty to me as I watched. :)

                                              1. I was surprised Chris/Art/Thierry weren't the bottom team when they got called out first. There seemed to be a fair amount of criticism and Thierry's crepes looked burnt. I can see Chris getting mad at Art for forgetting the mandolin or whatever it was but he was a douche. Art's namedropping is ridiculous but I don't hate him the way everyone else here does.

                                                Hugh's blog: http://www.bravotv.com/top-chef-maste...

                                                I agree with this: "Rick was vibrating with excitement at Chris’ dish. That’s a line he would officially like to retract."

                                                2 Replies
                                                1. re: Joanie

                                                  I also agree with his point that a dessert crepe made on a griddle that just did fish and meat sounds a bit unappealing.

                                                  1. re: DGresh

                                                    Didn't they (at least the latter two teams) scrub down/clean the griddle in-between in general? I'll have to watch again but I think they cleaned the flat top before the crepes were made?

                                                    In fact, of the three teams it struck me how the first one did NOT do so especially at the end when Lorena Garcia left the remnants of her fried rice scattered all over the messy teppanyaki and no-one made a move to clean up (so far as was seen on TV). The other two teams scrubbed the flat top down at the end of their cooking time.

                                                2. What is the matter with Art? Is he proving that you become bitchy when you get thinner? Suddenly he's a diva?

                                                  I really liked him and his "honey bear" Southern charm persona on his first appearance on Top Chef Masters. He was really likeable and his banter with Jonathan Waxman was sweet. He got me interested in Southern food and I actually purchased his cookbooks.

                                                  This season, he's just name-dropping and acting flaky and doing the diva act. I want Honey Bear Art to come back!

                                                  5 Replies
                                                  1. re: chefhound

                                                    Not to completely turn this into Art bashing but he's *always* been a name dropper. Always. And the diva thing isn't new either. Just different editing.

                                                    I don't care who you cooked for; just because they're a celebrity doesn't mean they have good taste!!! Granted, he can put out some good food but let your food do the talking.

                                                    1. re: Dee S

                                                      I agree with chefhound, I didn't notice the obnoxious traits before. Ii thought he was really fun and was sad when he left. Maybe if a marathon ever runs, I'll see if he was name dropping first time around but I didn't notice it, certainly not the over the top way he does now.

                                                      1. re: Joanie

                                                        A bit of earlier CH discussion about the name dropping:


                                                        I particularly enjoyed the <fake> quote in the second link. This is not to say that y'all should have been annoyed by him last time around, just that some folks were.

                                                        1. re: debbiel

                                                          Looks like I didn't like the name-dropping by Art back in 2009 either. ;-)

                                                          1. re: LindaWhit

                                                            Ain't nothing wrong with being reliable. :) Also, he apparently was into the "food is love" schtick back in 2009.