During the ensuing Food Flurry, Mia bitches that the Quickfire is bogus because she doesn't drink mixed drinks. I'll bet she does after the Elimination. Ted Ilan says defiantly that he "sort of deviates from a Christmas theme because [he's] never celebrated Christmas in [his] life." Wait, why's he feeling all oppressed? Padmadala never specified Christmas, she said "holiday season." Ted Ilan goes on, "I make a Hanukkah snack." And yes, he uses matzoh. Throughout the Food Flurry and Beverage Barrage, we can unfortunately hear Betty squawking and shrilling at various things. Michael calls out, "Ten minutes," as he powers up a stand-up mixer filled with heavy cream. Michael tells us that he has such a strong bartending background that everyone back home will make fun of him if he doesn't win. Of course Michael has been a bartender. Of course. Suffering sassafras, is he pouring a can of Guinness into that cream? That's totally awesome. I'm going to try it at home, oh yes I am. Padmadala tells them they have five minutes as someone plates some adorably wee ice cream sandwiches. Oh, for goodness -- what is Marcel doing? He's got Betty's favorite crÃ¨me brÃ»lÃ©e torch and he's heating up black wormy objects in a double shot glass. Padmadala calls out, "Hands up, utensils down." Betty dramatically raises her arms high above her head.
Padmadala and the mixologist start with Michael, who presents his "Tasty Lacy." Now, I realize I've slammed Mia and Betty for giving their dishes cutesy-poo names, but with Michael's bartending background, this could be a real drink. Or he named it for his wife. Or her panties. I mean, there's cream. The Tasty Lacy is in a Heath Bar or Skor-rimmed glass (Michael loves rimmers) and made up of caramel Bailey's, Bushmills, White Godiva liqueur, and Guinness foam. His accompanying treats are the mini ice cream sandwiches I was drooling over earlier. He describes them as, "Like a cherry ice cream sandwich, with cookie. Tried to make a little Christmas color in there." In one of this show's odder moments, the mixologist judge doesn't pick up the glass and drink. She spoons the cocktail up. With a spoon.
Cliff made a cocktail with original Bailey's, rum, vodka, and vanilla bean. It looks like he might have toasted marshmallows floating on top as well. Mixologist actually picks up the drink this time. Cliff's snack is grilled beef and a crÃ¨me fraÃ®che fondue (meaning "sauce" in this instance) with nutmeg and dark chocolate shavings. He's placed it all on a sesame wafer. Mixologist says, "I was kinda hoping someone would do a burger and a Bailey's shake." Ooh, they have those adult shakes at Town Talk Diner in Minneapolis. Yum. There's this one called Monkey Business that has chocolate, banana, peanut butter, and bourbon and another called Karmel Kamelion with cider reduction, caramel, pecans, and applejack brandy. Next time I'm home, I'm so trying their Irish Float with Guinness and vanilla ice cream. Sam did a Bailey's hot chocolate flavored with Godiva liqueur and ice cream, accompanied by eggnog French toast topped with sautÃ©ed apple, rosemary, and onions. Marcel got all molecular gastronomical on this challenge and made something he calls, "Fire and Smoke." It's a trio. I like how Bravo's graphics department has decided that what Marcel really meant was "Smoke and Fire." It's nice they're there to help the cheftestants know their own mind. He's got a shot of scotch, a glass demitasse cup of coffee and Bailey's, and the snack. The snack is pancetta, potato, and coffee grinds. Huh. I usually throw my coffee grinds away. I'll know better next time. Marcel's snack is also described as "with vanilla vapor." Oh, yes. See, that wormy thing we saw getting brÃ»lÃ©ed earlier was vanilla bean, and the snack is balanced on the mouth of the vanilla bean-filled double-shot glass where it is getting vaporized by the smoking bean. You know, I used to think pancetta plus anything was heaven. But I might draw the line at vanilla potatoes and coffee grinds. Mixologist likes the salty and the sweet.