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Top Chef Masters "Episode 9: Old School, New School " (9/19/12) [*SPOILERS*]

Is it already the penultimate show? Part of me is relieved ... actually, a big part of me is relieved.

Judges break out their toques for the Quickfire and it's James and Chris taking the win.

But it's Kerry rising to the challenge in the Elimination round when he and his high school students take the show with chicken and creamed(!) spinach.

Lorena now has more time to gin up Taco Bell bowls, or whatever they're called.

Chris v. Kerry. And so it shall be.

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  1. I liked Lorena being positive. Kerry was really driving them. thought those kids would have to decide that they like that harassment, or pick a different career path. Hope it pays off for them, too.

    Jo jo has type 2 diabetes!

    4 Replies
    1. re: Shrinkrap

      I only caught the last 15 min, will watch the whole thing at some point, but I thought Lorena went out with class. It may have all been a big fake smile but she seemed like she had no problem at all with the decision and in the little bit I saw, it seemed like everyone got along better. Will confirm that (or not) when I can.

          1. re: jeanmarieok

            thanks. I fell asleep and missed it. :(

      1. When I saw the preview last week, I complained about having other folks cook for them this late in the season. But I loved the episode. Really loved it. I enjoyed seeing their different styles of working with the kids and thought they all did a great job with that.

        Happy with the final two, still pulling for Chris.

        1 Reply
        1. re: debbiel

          I said the same thing but then they grew on me

        2. ipse, great recap.
          shall we call in seal team six to rescue you from those villians who planted you in front of the t.v. and forced you to watch?

          2 Replies
          1. re: linus

            Only if none of them write a memoir about it afterwards.

            1. re: ipsedixit

              fair enough. however, one of them is going to be a guest judge on 'top chef seattle,' in a challenge wherein the chefs have to perform many seal-like duties in addition to cooking, for the sole purpose of pissing off viewers.

          2. Lorena competing for the Healthy kids alliance and shilling for Taco Bell. Every time she talked about how important healthy eating for kids was was, Jojo having diabetes, I thought of that.

            I loved seeing Chris interact w/ the kids and how he mentored and taught them. It seemed like the other kids learned to make their dishes. Chris's kids learned about cooking. Glad Chris is in the finale. And, that Ruth called Lorena on her making good home cook meals. I did think Lorena went out w/ class.

            10 Replies
            1. re: chowser

              My daughter thought Chris acted like they were way younger than they were. Especially when he helped them steer the cart. But we are rooting for him.

              1. re: Shrinkrap

                You mean she thought he was condescending?

                Whom did she want as a tutor?

                1. re: huiray

                  I had asked her if she meant condescending, and she said no. BTW, she is 22, so.........

                2. re: Shrinkrap

                  I think Chris's direction was different. He wanted the students to understand the reason for doing things a certain way and not just teach technique

                3. re: chowser

                  I thought it was interesting that she prided herself on making healthy food when the lasagna was basically layers upon layers of cream, cheese and various meats. I mean, it's not bad per se, but not necessarily the healthiest either (although at least it's made from real ingredients, unlike fast food).

                  If anything, I think Lorena infantilized her students a little, though it came from a good place. She didn't want to push them because she wanted to reinforce their self-esteem but it came across a bit like hand-holding. At the same time, it looks like everyone had fun and that's what matters.

                  Kerry, on the other hand, was a real taskmaster, but the challenge really built up his students' confidence in the end.

                  1. re: piccola

                    yes, I thought also, the kid has type 2 diabetes, and you're going to cook *pasta*? Why not show a better way to do it, with eggplant, or squash instead. But perhaps she found that out after they shopped? I don't think so, but don't completely recall.

                    1. re: DGresh

                      I do think she found out after they started cooking, but her reaction was still along the lines of, Thank god I'm teaching them how to cook healthy foods then! Oh well.

                      1. re: DGresh

                        I thought the same thing about JoJo. I'm sure he's been learning about high glycemic foods and all that stuff as a newly diagnosed diabetic. I understand that the science behind that is now coming under fire in some quarters but still, tons of pasta and cream and cheeses? Replacing the pasta with eggplant and making eggplant parmigiana or even just marinara would have been a much healthier choice, and still been a variation on lasagna. For that matter, she could have used spinach lasagna noodles.

                        1. re: DGresh

                          Was this a meal the "chefs" were to eat? I thought they were cooking for mystery dinners. That meal had better be Top Chef worthy if they were going to win and a chef needs to cook for the diners even if it's food they can't eat or care for

                          1. re: scubadoo97

                            No question, but I think that Lorena could have improved on *all* counts if she'd done something that wasn't your typical meal that Americans eat (too much of) at home. She could have succeeded at making something more restaurant-quality, AND more healthy. And given that Jo-Jo and she were having a discussion about learning about healthy food through cooking......

                    2. Based on plating alone, I figured Chris and Oseland had won the Quickfire.

                      Interesting how each chef worked with their kid chefs. I loved Chris taking time to actually teach his kids vs. talking at them to create the specific dish. I think he helped excite his students into really learning about food itself. Thought Kerry's pushing his students might have one of them break down but they powered through.

                      Glad Chris's dish made it through vs. Lorena's, but Lorena was gracious in her exit.