HOME > Chowhound > Food Media & News >

Discussion

Last Chance Kitchen 11/28 (spoilers)

Figured I'd write this up quickly but I seldom watch the show in real time so someone else will have to take it over in future weeks. In any case, Tom comes to the house and most of them have an inkling that LCK is happening again. They meet in the kitchen and find that they have to use the ingredients that got them booted the first time.

Chrissy decides to redo the salad from the restaurant, Carla debones the squab but has a hard time with it, Jeffrey does halibut w/ peas and morels in cream sauce and Koniko makes a potato lemongrass chowder. Tom says everyone but one person redeemed themselves and that's Carla, the squab's legs were too rare and it wasn't properly seasoned. Even tho Carla was chattering bugging Chrissy, she gets sympathy for being called out like that. Tom picks Koniko as the winner and she's hoping to surprise her parents by winning.

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
Delete
  1. Nice job on the LCK recap Joanie!

    I'm glad to see her win and hope she blasts through LCK!

    1. I guess Carla Pellegrino does have a problem with squab (or small poultry). Glad to see Kuniko Yagi move on to the next round.

      I suspect that so long as KY concentrates on her own dish she will be a formidable contestant, but it is still early days.

      1. I hate to admit that I love Carla a little bit for saying, "it takes me 12 minutes just to de-bone the bitch."

        Glad to see Kuniko gets to cook some more - she was kicked off for a totally valid reason, but I'm excited to see what else she can do.

        1. Thanks for starting the write-up, Joanie! Just got a chance to view the first LCK, and was *very* pleasantly surprised that Kuniko won LCK! I think it was probably between her and Jeffrey - either of whom I'd have been pleased to see win.

          I hope Kuniko can take this pretty far through the LCK competition.

          1. Maybe I'm wrong, but I finished watching the LCK with the impression that Kuniko not only won this round, but that she was given her Top Chef coat back and would be joining the others in the primary competition this next week.

            I'm a bit lost as to what happened with the others. Carla "did not redeem herself" and is most certainly done. As to the other two, will we see them again in future upcoming LCK contests?

            22 Replies
            1. re: nosh

              The LCK champ gets a coat, but doesn't return to the main competition. If they lose at some point, they have to hand over their coat to whoever beats them. The eventual winner is apparently coming back in the finale this season.

              1. re: nosh

                No, she gets to keep her Top Chef coat in the LCK, but she has to continue to win against whoever comes in as they're eliminated from TC. If she loses, she gives up her TC coat, and whoever won against her gets *their* TC coat back. Whoever wins the last LCK gets back into the TC competition - I think when there are 4 left in Top Chef, so they'd become the 5th cheftestant.

                Based on last season's LCK, once they're eliminated from LCK, they become bystanders. They sit on stools watching and quietly commenting on the action. Sometimes they get to partake of the food, but mostly, watch and sometimes call out to the cheftestants asking what they're cooking.

                1. re: nosh

                  It did kind of seem as if she could go back to the main house.

                  Linda, I thought it was between Jeffrey and K. too and was just thinking that judging such separate items is kind of hard. It's very hard for that salad to compete with well cooked fish or an interesting chowder.

                  1. re: Joanie

                    Exactly. Chrissy saved face by making the salad properly, and with Tom C. saying that the Canlis brothers would have liked the 2nd one she made. But I can't see how she could have won with that dish.

                    However, what else could she have done? She had to work with the ingredients she had for the salad. She couldn't really do much more, could she? I know Kuniko chose to do something different, but what "different" could you do with romaine, other than maybe grill it?

                    1. re: LindaWhit

                      So by winning against the other three, Kuniko just survuves until the next round of LCK? And Jeffrey and Chrissy, who clearly beat Carla who was the "loser" just go to the side like Carla?

                      Maybe so, but I'm thinking that, especially with the double-eliminations in the main TC compeition, that Kuniko very well may return to TC this week, and those who pack their knives will compete against Chrissy and Jeffrey in the next LCK.

                      1. re: nosh

                        Yes.

                        I doubt it but that would shake things up, wouldn't it? maybe thats what they are after this season.

                        1. re: nosh

                          Kuniko Yagi will have to win against every chefestant that is thrown into L CK to make it back onto the proper TC competition, based on the previous series. That is a tall order, and I consider it a good test of the cheftestent who might make it back into the "regular" sequence.

                          1. re: huiray

                            Pertty sure I heard Tom say that she will have to compete next week against the chef that gets PYKAG'ed from the main competition.

                            jb

                            1. re: JuniorBalloon

                              "Pertty sure I heard Tom say that she will have to compete next week against the chef that gets PYKAG'ed from the main competition."
                              ----------
                              Correct. So, what is it about my post that you are disputing?

                              If LCK is run like it bwas the previousnseason, Yagi will have to win in each iteration of LCK against whoever has been tossed out from the main TC sequence to be able to "make it back' onto the main TC series.

                              What DID you have in mind when you disputed what I said?

                              1. re: huiray

                                I'm thinking JB was agreeing with you and clicked on your post to reply instead of nosh's (to whom he was replying), as yours was the last one in that part of the thread. I don't JB was disputing you, huiray.

                                1. re: huiray

                                  Linda is correct, no dispute here, just adding more info for nosh.

                                  jb

                                2. re: JuniorBalloon

                                  So the first LCK was four contestants, but subsequent LCKs will be two chefs head to head?

                                  1. re: chicgail

                                    Hmm, I don't know. They did last year, but maybe they will wait until 3 are eliminated to have another LCK, though I thought Tom said Next week, not next time. I guess we'll find out next week.

                                    jb

                                    1. re: JuniorBalloon

                                      That's how I heard it as well. Tom said next week so I would imagine it's head to head here on out.

                                    2. re: chicgail

                                      That's the way it was done in the previous season. Except in that season it was from the second week when there were only two ousted cheftestants.

                                  2. re: huiray

                                    She'll have to win one on one, also. Much harder to do than make it through to the finals where the other cheftestants (love that word) only have to not be the chef with the worst dish. Just my opinion, anyway.

                                    1. re: Leepa

                                      If they eliminate both members of a team next week, LCK will have more to compete.

                                      1. re: nosh

                                        That's true. Hadn't taken multiple eliminations into account. I'm sure they'll figure it out.

                                        1. re: Leepa

                                          Last season (TC Texas) when they eliminated a team-of-two (Team Venison: Dakota Weiss and Nyesha Arrington) in episode 7 [Game On], both of them went head-to-head in a 3-way cook-off with Whitney Otawka, the previous winner of LCK.
                                          http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Top_Chef...

                                  3. re: nosh

                                    I'm just telling you what has happened in last season's LCK, but yes, Kuniko gets to continue to battle whoever gets booted from TCK and eventually, whoever wins the last LCK makes it back into the TC competition.

                                3. re: Joanie

                                  The current LCK champ does not return to the main house. The current TC contestants are not aware if LCK is taking place or not. Moving Kuniko to the main house would give it away.

                                  I agree with your assessment of the salad against the other dishes but if Tom were judging based on whether or not the dish appropriately redeemed their error, she could have won. I think Kuniko executed her dish better.

                                4. re: nosh

                                  Based upon last season, LCK was a side challenge for the losing/eliminated chefs. The weekly loser challenges the previous LCK winner. Those that that lose the LCK challenge are eliminated for the rest of the season.

                                  Eventually, the last LCK winner is injected back into the main TC competition. Last year this occurred where there were 4 or 5 chefs remaining.

                                5. I didin't see any mention of the Save a Chef option in LCK. I just tried to read the rules and my head hurts. Apparently there is a sweepstakes you can enter as well as the Save a Chef voting that will allow a chef back into the LCK competition. Here's a pertinent blurb from the rules -
                                  "The winner of the Save A Chef Competition will enter the Last Chance Kitchen finale scheduled to take place on February 13, 2013 at 11:01 PM ET. The winner of the Last Chance Kitchen finale will re-enter the Top Chef 10 competition on February 20, 2013."

                                  So it looks like the chef with the most votes will do a final competition with whoever survives the LCK to get back into the main competition. That can't be right because it seem kind of crappy to have to cook to survive LCK while someone else just sits around and collects votes to get a chance to get back in.

                                  I voted for Jefferey, but dont think I'll keep up with this.

                                  jb

                                  1. I'm puling for Kuniko (I liked Jeffrey, too, but that was more personality than cooking probably) so I'm happy with the results but this LCK seemed so unfair. How can you compare making a salad in half an hour to making squab? I guess it's similar on the show but as much as I didn't like Carla, the odds were stacked against her. OTOH, if you could pull off a squab in half an hour, you'd probably beat someone who could pull of a salad. I thought Josie was funny when she said, "Yahoo, America now knows I can make a salad!"

                                    35 Replies
                                    1. re: chowser

                                      I am also pulling for Kuniko, but the Save a Chef was just for the chefs eliminated from the LCK. And actually, I almost voted for Carla based on the entertainment factor alone.

                                      I was actually suprprised that Josie made a salad. She didn't have to. She had to use those ingredients, but she could combine them in any way she wanted. It also appeared they could use items from the pantry that weren't a part of the original dish. As you say it is hard for a salad to compete with some of the other dishes. That being said Kristin won the main EC with mushrooms and fried onions. Perhaps it's only in how well you execute.

                                      jb

                                      1. re: chowser

                                        Chrissy made the salad. Josie hasn't been eliminated. Yet. :-)

                                        1. re: LindaWhit

                                          Ugh, I can never get the contestants straight early in the season. Thanks. Who is Josie?

                                          1. re: chowser

                                            Josie is one of the returned cheftestants - TC2 with Marcel and Ilan, the eventual winner.

                                            1. re: LindaWhit

                                              Yes, thanks. I'll get it straight at some point--raw turkey and massive potatoes. They don't look alike so I'm not sure why I have them confused. While there are some who have stood out, others blend into the crowd. Danyele, Eliza, quite a few have blended into the woodwork for me so far. But, that's par for the course for every season.

                                              1. re: chowser

                                                She's been wearing a sweatband with Josie on it. Maybe not all of the time though.

                                                1. re: Leepa

                                                  Funny I never noticed that but I will probably see it all the time now that you pointed it out. LOL it would be helpful if they all wore one, early in the season! At this point I still identify them by the dishes they've made, some distinguishing characteristic, but still can't place the names correctly yet (bearded guy, South African woman w/ accent, extra tall guy, glasses at the wrong place, former model, etc.). That's why it was helpful when Linda told me Josie was the former TC contestant.

                                                  1. re: chowser

                                                    I agree with your thoughts about not being able to keep up with their names. Especially the ones that go out early. It helps when I come to the threads here and read about the show. Somehow or another I can retain it better when I see it rather than hear it on the show.

                                                    1. re: Leepa

                                                      It really helps me sort it out, too, reading about it here. I saw part of the show again and noticed the Josie headband. It's pretty prominent. I don't know how I've missed it!

                                                    2. re: chowser

                                                      It's hard to believe now, but during TC 6 it took me at least 4 of 5 episodes to remember which Voltaggio brother was Brian and which was Michael.

                                                      1. re: John E.

                                                        I still have to pause--I know and can identify from photos which one is in CA and which is the DC, area and their difference in styles, etc. but the names escape me sometimes. I recently ate at Volt and had to keep reminding myself his name was Bryan, not Michael. That would have been a bad thing.

                                                        1. re: chowser

                                                          I personally find it bewildering that people cannot differentiate between Michael Voltaggio and Bryan Voltaggio, even right from the start. But that's my view.

                                                          1. re: huiray

                                                            I could easily distinguish the two. I just got their names confused. But, you'll probably find that bewildering, too.

                                                            1. re: chowser

                                                              Well, ok, of course I could tell that they were two, distinct individuals, I just could not remember which was named Bryan and which was named Michael. I could have been more clear, it just did not occur to me to be necessary.

                                                              1. re: John E.

                                                                Ah, that was my case, too. What confused me with the two is that Michael seems more outgoing and in your face and in my mind fit the name"Bryan" while "Michael" seems like a quieter, put your head down and do the work type name so their names didn't fit my stereotypes of the names.

                                                            2. re: huiray

                                                              Two generic looking white guys with dark, relatively short hair and no distinguishing marks. I'd be more likely to confuse them than confuse a Japanese guy and a Korean guy.

                                                          2. re: John E.

                                                            Michael stood out to me. I *think* he's taller than Bryan (or seemed that way) and he had a thinner face. But it was his sternness and Bryan's quietness that differentiated them for me. Michael seemed to have no problem voicing his opinion, whereas Bryan put his head down and just worked.

                                                            1. re: LindaWhit

                                                              Yup, and it was easy to distinguish them...after several episodes. I couldn't name or distinguish too many of this season's contestants after only four episodes (three, really).

                                                  2. re: chowser

                                                    I hate the beginning of a season. There's no way I can manage to remember who is who. I just thought it was me and that I didn't pay enough attention. Glad to hear I'm not alone!

                                                    1. re: jbsiegel

                                                      What I love is that if I don't remember, I can ask here and there's bound to be someone who can remember and help out.

                                                      1. re: chowser

                                                        I have to keep going back to the contestants' bios / pictures to remember!

                                                        1. re: jbsiegel

                                                          Wouldn't it be great if we could see it online, pause and click on faces to get bios? Bios aren't as helpful for me as much as recaps of the shows. If someone told me John is the one w/ the glasses half up his head, that places him better in my head than his bio, although "Most Hated Chef in Dallas" helps,

                                                          1. re: jbsiegel

                                                            I'm still doing that in the recaps! I have a tab available if I'm trying to remember who was on a team or need a bio picture reminder of who made something.

                                                            1. re: LindaWhit

                                                              It is *so easy* to have a tab open in one's browser pointing to the roster of cheftestants. I don't know why people have such difficulty referring to the list of cheftestants. Here's the link to the current crop of cheftestants on the bravo website for those who have not been able to find it yet: http://www.bravotv.com/top-chef/seaso...

                                                              1. re: huiray

                                                                The answer to your 'curiousity' is apathy. I really don't care that much.

                                                                1. re: John E.

                                                                  Exactly, John. Everyone's different. Most people just *watch* the show. They're not recapping or writing about is as it is happening. If I weren't recapping, I wouldn't be as worried about the specifics.

                                                                2. re: huiray

                                                                  Because not everyone chooses to do so nor do they care *while they are watching the show.* I do so for ease of ensuring that I'm getting the right info down for the recap ONLY. Otherwise, I sure as hell wouldn't have Bravo's website up if I were just watching the show.

                                                                  It's as simple as that. Everyone's different.

                                                                  1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                    And we appreciate it, Linda.:-) Thanks!

                                                      2. re: chowser

                                                        but they weren't comparing making a salad to making a squab, they were trying to see who redeemed themselves from their own loss, who proved the best that they could do well with basically the same ingredients that they'd blown it with before.

                                                        1. re: mariacarmen

                                                          Yes, but it's much easier to make a great salad in half an hour than great squab. As Carla put it, it took her "12 minutes to debone that bitch."

                                                            1. re: chowser

                                                              That may be, but neither the salad nor the squab won.

                                                        2. i have not read this thread at all yet - just here to ask why i can't find a link to the LCK Season 10 on the Bravo website? is it only available right after the show?

                                                          2 Replies
                                                          1. funniest thing to me was Kuniko saying "i feel like 2 butterflies in the stomach" and, then "it's the revenge to my potato" - cute! i'm glad she's back.

                                                            Thanks Joanie!

                                                            1 Reply
                                                            1. re: mariacarmen

                                                              That is part of her charm. I hope she goes far but it's so early in the game. She's fighting such an up hill battle.

                                                            2. Did Chrissy's salad still seem over-dressed to anyone else?

                                                              1 Reply
                                                              1. re: seamunky

                                                                no, it really didn't, to me.... it looked good.

                                                              2. I loved the challenge. Tom is skilled enough to judge the different dishes. It's rare that they all cook with the same ingredients anyway unless its a mystery box challenge.

                                                                I would have tried something else besides the salad. Chrissy wanted redemption but I think she would have been better off wowing Tom with something more her style. They had access to other ingredients in the pantry.

                                                                2 Replies
                                                                1. re: Sandwich_Sister

                                                                  Yes, she was so focused on redemption, that she lost focus of the task at hand, winning LCK and continuing on.

                                                                  1. re: Sandwich_Sister

                                                                    I agree. I would have at least come up with an original salad instead of trying to recreate a salad I've never tasted. Then you'd be able to communicate your own idea of what a great salad is.