Top Chef
Season 2 Finale, Part I

Episode Report Card
Keckler: B- | Grade It Now!
The Poke's On You

Food flurry. Gladware, Gladware, Gladware. Food flurry. Son of Sam describes one of his dishes and calls the opakapaka fish "red snapper." I'm sorry my friend, but opakapaka is one of my favorite Hawaiian fish, and not just because it reminds me of the nice Kai on Deep Space Nine, so I'm going to have to correct you here. Opakapaka is pink Hawaiian snapper and onaga is red or ruby Hawaiian snapper. Does it matter much? Not really, I just like to write and say "opakapaka" as much as humanely possible. Opaka. Paka. Food flurry. I'll describe the dishes when they actually serve them because I'm now opakapaka fatigued. While preparing his lau lau, Ted Ilan makes sure to tell us that he "boiled the hell" out of his taro because of the itchy throat thing.

The loser music starts up just after Ted Ilan tells us he's putting his Spanish Spin -- for the umpteenth time -- on his dishes. The loser music plays around Marcel telling us how he gets to use his molecular gastronomy chemicals and additives for the first time. He's going to be using xantham gum in his faux poi (love who coined that term on the forums) to thicken the mixture and make it more viscous. Son of Sam tells us, "Marcel knows a lot about food, but his weakness is that he's going to do Chemical City." I start to make a Batman crack but I'm drowned out by the Evil Dr. Mathra shouting, "Take me down to the Chemical City where the foams are keen and the airs are shitty! Oh, won't you please take me ho-oh-oh-wohme!" Son of Sam goes on, "You could give Marcel like a piece of rat crap, and he could probably make it look pretty on a plate, but is it going to taste good?" Dude, you're going ho-oh-oh-wohme.

Colicchio arrives for his Sniff 'n' Sneer, Aloha Style. He cracks to Marcel, "I think it's probably safe to say that Hawaiian cooking and thermal, um --" "Thermal immersion circulator," Marcel supplies. " -- that those two words probably haven't been put together yet," Colicchio finishes. Dude didn't even know the term. Major props to whomever on the boards said that the towel around Ted Ilan's forehead looks like a giant Kotex pad. Colicchio notes to us that Elia is blending Mediterranean and Hawaiian flavors, Ted Ilan is putting Spanish and Hawaiian together, Son of Sam is "playing it safe," and Marcel is deconstructing the traditional dishes. Colicchio adds, "It's great to see them not backstabbing each other at this point and just that they're focused on food and that's what's gonna win the day today." Oh, it's early yet, my shiny-headed friend.

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Top Chef




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