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Top Chef Masters "Episode 7: Culinary Knock Out" (9/5/12) [*SPOILERS*]

It's elimination tournament time. Winners face off and losers face off. And Sugar Ray is there to judge it all.

Chris beats Takashi (in the bacon round).

Lorena is the other winner in the bacon round, beating Patricia.

So it's Chris versus Lorena in the sugar round (get it? "sugar"?!!).

Lorena takes the title with the old-standby, chocolate cake. Yawn.

In the chicken livers loser elimination round it's Takashi versus Patricia.

The loser? Syonara Takashi.

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  1. Sayonara.

    I just don't get Lorena Garcia's advancement through the series. Speaking personally, of course. None of her dishes have seemed enticing to me, even if I have not tasted them, based on what they appear to be. None of them.

    The format of this episode was particularly trying to me. It felt very forced and even more artificial than normal.

    3 Replies
    1. re: huiray

      If I had to characterize her cooking on the show, I think she's done better when they have a very basic ingredient list and is at a disadvantage when the chefs have more time and a wider selection of proteins to choose from.

      I liked the format. At it's heart, it is two chefs cooking a quick dish using the same ingredient. They dressed it up in a certain way to fit their guest, but it was not so different from the elimination match they had at the end of the most recent season of The Next Iron Chef.

      1. re: FoodPopulist

        I thought it was odd that the winners of the round squared off against each other. I just assumed Chris and Lorena would be in then Patricia and Takashi would fight for the last spot. And that's really what it was anyway wasn't it? It wasn't like there was a point system so that if L. killed C. in dessert, he could have gone home right? Or did I miss something? I did miss what C. and T. cooked for bacon, can anyone tell me? And I was surprised P. beat T. in the chicken liver round cuz James didn't like her underdone dish so much. Seemed like someone else agreed. What exactly did T. do wrong? (Obviously I was doing some other stuff while this was on.) I know people think Lorena is subpar but she keeps winning and I thought the attitude of the chefs toward her was a little off putting.

        And we forgot to mention that the head of Chow.com was a judge.

        1. re: Joanie

          You have to have the winners of the first round face off against each other if you want to determine a first place (for the money that goes to the winner's charity).

    2. I enjoyed the fact that Chris and Takashi help each other when competing against each other. Well played

      7 Replies
      1. re: scubadoo97

        Wasn't that a nice thing to see?
        I liked the format of this episode very much, but I was sorry to see Takashi go.

        1. re: scubadoo97

          Agree. You could also tell that everyone watching thought the same.

          I'm *so* tired of Lorena. Her grudge-holding over Patricia's telling her last week to clean up her station and to not hog the stove burners is rather childish. It seems that other chefs aren't particularly enamoured of her either. Perhaps there's more going on behind the scenes that we aren't seeing.

          Sorry to see Takashi go. I really liked him throughout the season. Would have much preferred seeing Chris, Patricia, Takashi and Kerry being in the final 4. And I liked the "battle format" of this episode. Pretty straightforward. You get one ingredient with which to work from. Although I found it interesting that the battle for 1st was with sugar; and the battle for elimination was chicken livers. I thought they might do the same - they had protein (bacon) for the initial rounds and they'd go with something sweet for the 2nd rounds. Instead, Takashi and Patricia get another protein.

          And yes - "founder" of CHOW was a judge. Kind of liked when she countered James Oseland's comment re: his chicken livers being too underdone by saying "it's subjective - mine were perfect to me."

          1. re: LindaWhit

            We're on the same page with this- so happy Patricia stayed, so sorry Takashi left! Agree about the Lorena- she should be happy she won for pete's sake and get over it! Art's gone- she needs to make new friends.
            I preferred this format hands down to the supermarket dash and pandemonium and drama in the kitchen. This was a straight forward episode about cooking showcasing ingredients most of us love to eat minus the faulty equipment, forgotten ingredient melodrama. Also loved the gorgeous old school Vegas showgirl who served the food.

            I had no idea who started CHOW before. Mildly surprised I never heard of her before but she added a fresh voice to the panel. I'm getting tired of James Oseland's whiny remarks and didn't missed Ruth but looks like she's back next week. And who knew Sugar Ray Leonard was a food lover plus all his brain cells seemed to be intact, unlike so many famous veteran boxers.

            1. re: Berheenia

              I was also glad to see that Sugar Ray still has his brain.

              Did anyone notice that the blonde judge (can't remember her name) has a head that's twice as big as the judge from CHOW? It just struck me.

            2. re: LindaWhit

              Your observations completely echo mine, Linda. I'm a bit behind in the series so I just watched last night. I wasn't enjoying this season as much as the others the first few weeks, but now am feeling like we have a mature group of chefs who are confident and classy.

              I was really sorry to see Takashi go instead of Lorena. He was a class act and a terrific chef and it would have been nice to see him in the final four.

            3. re: scubadoo97

              agree with this, it brought a tear to my eye, that they'd actually consider sharing with each other, it's a competition after all.

            4. aw shoooooooooooooooooooooot! My favorite (Takashi) is out. I missed this cause I was watching Bill Clinton. I wish Bravo would rerun the episodes, but they've taken to only doing so int he first hour after the show. Don't have a DVR.

              so, where was Kerry in all this? Or did he have some kind of immunity?

              Now I really don't care who wins. dislike Lorena.

              7 Replies
              1. re: ChefJune

                Kerry won the Quickfire, so he got immunity, and part of that was he didn't have to cook in the EC.

                1. re: ChefJune

                  I saw the beginning, just until Bill showed up, and I'm glad. I think I can catch it on line, or at the very least, at 9PM next Wednesday. Sorry Takashi is out. I guess that Lorena's food, while not being as complex and fancy as the other chef's, is very tasty. At the end of the day, it's about the taste.

                  1. re: ChefJune

                    "I wish Bravo would rerun the episodes,"

                    They are on "On Demand".

                    1. re: ChefJune

                      Bravo will rerun this episode right before the new one on Wednesday. Then they will show this ep and the next one on the morning of Sunday the 16th.

                      1. re: FoodPopulist

                        I've only seen the real estate show on right before the new episodes this season.

                        1. re: FoodPopulist

                          Unfortunately when they rerun the episodes they add all this garbage at the bottom third of the screen...tweets, comments, really annoying stuff. It especially irks me because half the time it is covering up the food and you can't see anything!

                        2. I too am tired of Lorena Garcia. I kind of like the food that Chris Cosentino has been making (although I couldn't stand his Chef vs. City FN show).

                          I was a bit surprised to see one of the top people from this site (owned by CBS) as a Top Chef judge on Bravo (owned by NBC). I guess the elves don't care and apparently neither do the networks.

                          5 Replies
                          1. re: John E.

                            Yeah I was over Lorena a while back but what's a top chef show without a villain and drama??? I assume market research tells them that we need drama or we get bored, but personally I'd be happier just watching a cooking competition without the made up drama. I guess I'm not the norm.

                            1. re: scubadoo97

                              I'm happier with the drama and wish they would play it up, but I also like my NLF/NBA/MLB and my political campaigns to be bloodsports.

                              1. re: FoodPopulist

                                See I knew there were viewers like you :) Market research doesn't lie

                            2. re: John E.

                              Travel Channel repeated No Reservations: San Francisco last night which featured Cosentino cooking offal.

                              He was entertaining on that show, but of course he was a supporting player to AB

                              1. re: coney with everything

                                I don't think it was Consentino on the Chef vs. City that I did not care for. It was the format and his partner on the show, Aarón Sanchez that I found annoying.

                            3. Sorry to see Takashi leave. Sorry to see Patricia stay.

                              1 Reply
                              1. re: chicgail

                                I am sooo with you on this assessment chicgail.