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Sep 26, 2012 11:00 PM

Top Chef Masters Finale.....nobody is doing it?..... [SPOILERS!]


So it's Chris.

The whole time I'm thinking...are they playing us? Chris' letters ( love, apology, to self, and....??? ) seem more authentic, but Kerry's food might be what most folks want to eat. The Saveur guy wants Kerry, but Ruth wants Chris. That gifttaste guy says best in thirty years, and he doesn't even look thirty years old. I want to know more about him. Maybe I will order something.

Wish I could do this justice, but it's pretty late here.

I'm impressed with how young Chris seems, looking for a res at Incanto, and digging his Boccalone pig jowls out of my freezer. But I don't want no babies. Husband says "Hell, no!", to the res, and probably the babies. Daughter says this is "edgy".

What's next?

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  1. it appeared that everyone other than oseland of the judges were moved by how directly personal cosentino's food struck them, and how it reached higher and deeper : the oysters were lauded as that one taste in thirty years, and reichl appreciating that she ate something new and different after thousands of meals. at the dinner what richman said about how one meal revealed the cook and the other revealed the person was also pretty fair.

    there were probably the fewest words said by the kritiks about the tripa napolitana dish at the meal, but it might have been the single dish that all of them enjoyed unreservedly. no comments from the judges about it either at the conclusion and summary made it into the final edit.

    4 Replies
    1. re: moto

      I'm guessing that they didn't say anything about the tripe dish because it would have been obvious that Chris had won.

      I thought Kerry really lost it with that last dish. Bor-ing!

      1. re: Ruth Lafler

        " It is, hands down the best tripe I’ve ever eaten ..."

        "Love Letter: Dearest Tripe, when people ask what was the singular dish I connected with this season, I just keep coming back to you ..."

        1. re: Ruth Lafler

          Ruth raved about the tripe on her Bravo blog:

          "Chris’ tripe is something else. This is tripe so soft and sensuous it would make a tripe-lover out of the most fanatic offal-phobe. It is, hands down the best tripe I’ve ever eaten, and I know this: Wherever she is, Grandma Rosalie is smiling."

        2. re: moto

          Oseland apparently appreciated Cosentino's stuff as much as the others, they just didn't edit it that way.

          Wow, they filmed this a year and a half ago, and Cosentino had to keep it to himself all that time? Damn.

        3. I recorded it as we were at an anniversary dinner with friends last night.....I couldn't help but find out if my beloved (LOL!) won. So glad he did & I can't wait to watch it tonight.

          2 Replies
          1. re: Janet from Richmond

            Your crush on him is only going to intensify when you watch it. Which will make it that much harder on you when HE CHOOSES ME! :)

          2. That's what I was thinking - that Kerry was going to win it *because* Chris took it pretty far out there. But I like that he stayed true to himself and his cooking.

            Francis Lam seemed very taken back by Kerry's explanation about the food he cooked for the "Letter to Yourself." And I *LOVED* that Francis loved Chris's blood sausage and fried egg, whereas the guy from Eating Las Vegas was totally dismissive. In "Watch What Happens" after the finale, Chris said he was fully aware that that guy didn't like him.

            Very glad Chris won. When he chose to go to the butcher shop, I was thinking "he'll get the ingredients he *wants* vs. what Whole Foods carries" and thought that might carry him through for the win (although I was a bit nervous with his last minute plating on several courses). And what was Kerry thinking when he asked if WF had lobsters? They didn't "run out" as Kerry said - they haven't carried lobsters in at least a year.

            OH! And on Watch What Happens, the top two vote getters for Fan Favorite were Takashi and Lorena. (REALLY? Lorena was a fan favorite?) But Takashi pulls out the FF win.

            And Top Chef-Seattle starts November 7th.

            41 Replies
            1. re: LindaWhit

              I also noticed that Francis Lam seemed taken aback with Kerry's explanation. And by taken aback, I mean he looked unimpressed. I thought Eating LV dude was pretty rude. Obviously I was not there to eat the food, but could it really have been THAT bad to someone who apparently enjoys blood sausage?

              I was really impressed that Chris stayed true to himself. I am not suggesting that Kerry did not do so. It's just that Chris' self is a little less comfortable for many folks. Good on him. And of course, I know that at least one of his love letters was really to me; he just couldn't say so on television.

              I liked Frances Lam as a judge. I hope they have him back.

              1. re: debbiel

                He might need to have certain procedures done if he is to return as Frances Lam. ;-P

                  1. re: LindaWhit

                    I am so glad Takashi won FF. I wanted him to take the whole thing. I missed that part on WWHL.

                    But last night I was very glad Chris won. And when I go to San Francisco in April I HAVE to eat at Incanto!

                    1. re: ChefJune

                      Does Takashi get more money for his charity for winning FF?


                      1. re: The Dairy Queen

                        Yes, Andy said that he'd get a donation, but didn't say how much.

                      2. re: ChefJune

                        Ditto my next trip to San Francisco. And on being glad that Chris won. They really edited it so that I thought Kerry was going to win.

                        1. re: LulusMom

                          That's funny because I had the exact opposite reaction. The editing made me think that Chris was going to win.

                          1. re: Miss Needle

                            In the judges' last discussion I counted Reichl, Lam, and Simmons for Cosentino, so was pretty sure he was the winner.

                            1. re: Miss Needle

                              I was pretty sure from the editing Chris was going to win as well -- especially the clips of him telling Kerry he was sure Kerry was going to win.

                          2. re: ChefJune

                            I really like Chris and his approach to food - despite the fact that as a vegetarian, I will never be able to eat anything he makes. Which says something about his on-screen charisma.

                            1. re: piccola

                              Not necessarily true, the late summer sample menu from his restaurant in SF shows lots of vegetable options.


                              1. re: pamf

                                Sorry, I should have been more clear -- I meant the stuff he makes on the show. :)

                                  1. re: Robert Lauriston

                                    Hey, thanks - I'd forgotten those in all his offal talk. Although the zabaglione doesn't really count, since dessert doesn't normally have meat :)

                                    1. re: piccola

                                      I've had a number of non-vegetarian desserts at Incanto, though most if not all were part of special head-to-tail / quinto quarto dinners.

                                        1. re: The Dairy Queen

                                          Not that I recall. He's made candied coxcombs, chocolate-pork blood gelato and panna cotta, chocolate pork liver ganache, mincemeat pie, suet pudding, candied beef tendon, and foie gras panna cotta.

                                          1. re: Robert Lauriston

                                            Wow! Were they all good and truly dessert-y?


                                            1. re: The Dairy Queen

                                              Yeah. Most of them I might not have known they weren't vegetarian if the menu hadn't said what they were made from. The very meaty mincemeat pie was an exception.

                                            2. re: Robert Lauriston

                                              Didn't Andrew Zimmern make some sort of blood dessert at his LA popup dinner?
                                              (a warm chocolate pudding, at 2:20)

                                          2. re: Robert Lauriston

                                            Well now he's just being contrary. :)

                                  2. re: piccola

                                    Where did you get that idea? Vegetarian dishes have been highlights of many of my meals there. I took a vegetarian to Incanto and she said it was the best meal of her life.


                                    1. re: Robert Lauriston

                                      Yeah, as I said above, I meant what he cooked on the show. I'm glad to see he takes veg as seriously as he does offal! I wish more people realized loving meat and loving veg aren't mutually exclusive.

                                      1. re: Robert Lauriston

                                        How about that

                                        " Seared foie gras, copy of California Penal Code 422 & dry oats  AQ"!

                                        How does that work? I guess I have to read the link.

                                      2. re: piccola

                                        I've read that half of the recipes in his new cookbook Beginnings are vegetarian and that he only has one offal dish there.

                                    2. re: LindaWhit

                                      I finally got round to watching that WWHL episode (on the site; in two parts plus the FF winner announcement). I thought Colicchio didn't seem much into it and seemed to try to distance himself somewhat from Cosentino and Heffernan.

                                      1. re: huiray

                                        That's a little odd about the distancing (I didn't see WWHL so I don't have any personal perspective on this), especially after we heard about Tom being best man and caterer, etc. at Hefferman's wedding.


                                        1. re: The Dairy Queen

                                          I thought perhaps he was more trying to distance himself from Andy Cohen.

                                          1. re: LindaWhit

                                            I agree - the distancing was more from AC (whom, unlike you, I love).

                                            1. re: LulusMom

                                              In small doses, I can deal with him. In earlier shows, he was always schnockered (or seemed it) at the start of the show...and it would get worse as the half hour went on. He seems to have toned that back a bit.

                                              I guess I just more dislike his interruptions and "over-command" of the airtime. Yeah, I know it's his show. But let your guests talk a little bit.

                                              1. re: LindaWhit

                                                Totally get your point. I guess I see it more as being a fly on the wall at a cocktail party. I love how toasted they get. That episode with Cloris Leachman about a week ago was jaw dropping.

                                                1. re: LulusMom

                                                  OK, now *THAT* one I might have to go find on Bravo's website. :-)

                                            2. re: LindaWhit

                                              That could be - I should have mentioned that too. Perhaps his "distancing" from AC spilled over into the interactions he had with CC and KH, perhaps. What did come over to me was his sort-of reluctance to be on that episode.

                                            3. re: The Dairy Queen

                                              I've seen Colicchio on WWHL before and he seemed to be having fun. Maybe, if he's close friends with Kerry, he was disappointed, and also was trying not to be all chummy with Kerry and leave Chris out.

                                              1. re: Ruth Lafler

                                                Good point. Could be one of many things, or maybe he was just not feeling well or something. You just never know.


                                        2. No complaints about Cosentino's win, although I would have been fine with Heffernan too.

                                          I thought Cosentino did put more of himself into the food, as others have commented on; whereas Heffernan's food was perhaps "sleeker" but closer to the surface, if that makes sense. In both cases what they presented almost seemed like a continuation of the ethos and approach that came over to I as the viewer from the penultimate episode when they were coaching and driving their charges.

                                          1. The whole episode was refreshingly civilized, without the major screw-ups and over the top personality grumbling/shouting. Happy with the winner, he deserved it more, and all the food looked and sounded incredible but I would be more interested in eating at Kerry's restaurant than Chris's. Going to google a fennel gratin recipe after I finish this post.

                                            1 Reply
                                            1. re: Berheenia

                                              We split a discussion of how to prepare fennel to the Home Cooking board, here: . Enjoy.