Top Chef
Eastern Promise

Episode Report Card
Keckler: A+ | Grade It Now!

The place fills up and people eat. Betty greets people and tells us, "We were working it! We were saying 'hello,' to everyone!" Betty tells some chick she loves her shirt. Over at Team Korea, Elia and Otto argue over something. Whatever it is, Elia thinks they're fine as it is. Otto says, "There's going to be a ton of people coming here to eat, and we're going to get killed." "Otto, are you asking me or are you just telling me?" Elia asks calmly. I don't know why, but that line made me LOVE her. It was just so calm and pointed and stubborn. Elia says they had a problem with all the personalities converging on one team.

Ming visits Team Vietnam, and Josie gives him the summer roll with pickled watermelon and aioli. "You said it's traditional, but it's not really traditional, right?" Ming says. "Aw, right a little twist to it," Josie says. Ming asks what's next and picks up a bowl. "We have a pork fah," Josie tells him. "Pork fuh?" Ming asks, correcting her. "Fuah," Josie says. "Fuh," Ming says again. Fuh you, dude. "Fuh?" Josie asks, baring her long teeth. "You mean fuh, right? Like that you slice on top of noodles?" Ming clarifies. Son of Sam glares as Ming eats. Betty asks if he would like their third dish and hands over their cucumber-aloe refresher. "That's very nice, a little spice, a little chile in there," Ming says. "Ginger," Betty corrects him. Heh. "Ginger," Josie says as well. "It's ginger?" Ming asks, "It's very nice, it's just not traditional Vietnamese, but I love the flavor." Not traditional Vietnamese, indeed! You're just embarrassed you identified ginger as chile! Ming leaves and Team Vietnam exhales. Betty tells us cryptically, "There was a little bit of angst with the summer rolls. I trusted them and it worked out in the end." Who did she trust? And with what? The cutting? I'm confused.

Colicchio samples the food at Team Korea. Elia gives him their Spicy Braised Pork with Sticky Rice, Kim Chee, and Lotus Chips. Colicchio is very impressed. Colicchio admits to Elia that he was skeptical because traditional kimchi takes a long period of time, however, theirs is pretty good for a quick kimchi. Marisa explains her Jasmine Tea Panna Cotta (Bravo spells it incorrectly as "pannacotta" for the second time) with Tapioca and a Candied Taro Chip. I guess the taro chip is in place of the lychee curls? Elia tells us that she did feel their dessert was a little tough, but they didn't have time to redo it. "There's enough gelatin, maybe a little too much gelatin," Colicchio tells Marisa, who doesn't respond. Ming also loves the pork and asks if the panna cotta is a traditional Korean dessert. I think he already knows it isn't. Panna cotta is Italian, and, furthermore, Korea isn't country that is really big on sweets and desserts as far as I know. Marisa tells him that they used ingredients that were traditional Korean ingredients. Is taro Korean? I guess it is. Marisa tells us, "When I tasted the food we put out, I really thought we had a shot at winning this."

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Top Chef




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