Padma explains that they will cook individually and be judged against the others in their group. And two cheftestants will be eliminated. So presumably the worst from each group will be considered to go home. That would suck if you were in a really awesome group and just happened to have the worst dish. I understand that these arrangements make it easier for home viewers to track and easier for the judges to judge, but I always feel a little bad when someone just gets put in an unfair group. Then again, with the level of talent this season, it's pretty equal. Fabio is already shaking his head and laughing because he's going to have to cook French-Vietnamese fusion food. Well, so are the three others in your group, and other than Angelo, I don't know how much experience they have with it. So suck it up. This is Top Chef, not Top Gnocchi.
So the cheftestants head out to their designated restaurants. Antonia, Dale L., Jamie, and Casey go to Townhouse. Dale notices that the presentation is very important, and there is an illustration in the menu of how a certain dish is constructed. Meanwhile, Angelo, Mike, Tiffany, and Fabio are eating at Ma Peche. Angelo totally has a culinary boner over the food, since it's French Vietnamese. He's practically Frenching the food as it comes to the table, and then he nearly jams it up his nostril. Then he delivers a forty-five minute dissertation on why each dish is so awesome. And look, I get that he knows his Asian food, but he doesn't say anything that insightful. It's like, "The arugula is peppery." No shit, Sherlock. Tiffany interviews that Angelo is really annoying to eat with, and no argument here.
Blais, Spike, Stephen and Tre are eating at Marea, the Italian resturant. The first dish is sea urchin. Tre says that it's not his favorite and Stephen is like, "This one will change your mind." Is there anything more annoying at a restaurant than when someone tries to convince you that you like something that you don't like? As if you are a picky toddler? No, I really don't like sautéed mushrooms and you can tell me how awesome they are all you want, but when there are ten million other ingredients in the world, I think I can live a rich and full life without eating them. Stephen tells everyone the history of the restaurant and what a blowhard. I'm on Tre's side here. Blais interviews that the food is elegant and simple, so he's a little worried because his own dishes sometimes need editing.
Tiffani, Carla, Marcel, and Dale T. are eating at WD-50. Carla explains, to people who haven't watched any other seasons, that Wylie Dufresne is known for modern techniques, especially molecular gastronomy. And that's not exactly Carla's bag, so she's a little nervous. One of the dishes they are served is a scrambled egg block, which looks gross, but is apparently delicious.