Top Chef
Seven

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Miss Alli: B- | Grade It Now!
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Hate the Sin, Love the Dinner

Marcel talks to Elia about his plans, and because they involve chocolate, she suggests he find out whether Ilan is also doing chocolate. Ilan provides a dictionary definition of "smug" when he smirks that Marcel is "slow" with plating and cooking, and that beating him out will be "a piece of cake." Knock-knock-knock. What's that sound? Oh, it's what goes around! And it's coming around! To dinner!

Wild Oats Market. It's shopping time. The budget is $150. Per... person, right? I assume so. Elia tells us that she found some organic chickens, so that made her happy. Ilan says that he was extremely lucky to get gluttony, which he considers "the easiest," so he's going to make something totally awesome. I believe him, don't you? Michael wants to do a dish with imitation crabmeat and real crabmeat, because the fake crab wants to be a real crab. That's... intriguing, although I don't know about serving the fake crab at a dinner party, and who's going to get it? With a little assist from Sam, he comes up with the idea that a trout would logically envy a salmon, which is bigger and more popular. So he goes with the trout and the salmon. I have to say, that's an intriguing idea. And weirdly, I can kind of feel that, in that the salmon is a big old restaurant fish, and the trout is kind of a camping-trip fish. Once they're all checked out, it's time to head to Charlie's Fixtures.

Charlie's Fixtures, you see, is the place where they shop for stuff like dishes, because apparently, they have to... bring all the dishes to the party? Whatever, I'm not a caterer. They paw through boxes of dishes and glasses. Betty has decided to create a "trio of slow-roasted soups," because apparently, she thinks these represent laziness. And she's serving them in flutes, because what's better than a hot soup chugged from a champagne glass? I have to say, even I would have immediately known what was wrong with her presentation idea, in that it was bound to become a sloppy mess in the glass. Have you ever had a fruit smoothie in a glass? You know how the glass looks at the end? Not elegant, is how.

Ilan is checking out, and the lady behind the counter spontaneously announces that she'll give him a discount. Sam assures us that this is customary for chefs shopping at supply stores. Marcel raises, very calmly, the fact that they're not really supposed to take discounts. He's totally being an on-camera apple-polisher, but he's also probably right, which you can tell because it results in Sam calling him a "cheesy fuck." As Marcel himself checks out and apologizes for not accepting the discount, Sam is over to the side talking to all his peeps about how much he can't stand Marcel. Meanwhile, Marcel is talking to the camera about how much he doesn't like being talked about behind his back. Sam decides to start a big fight in the middle of the supply store, telling Marcel how nobody likes him, nobody wants to hang out with him, and so forth. Nothing makes you look good like screaming in public. Cliff tells us that Marcel is being "tolerated," in spite of being a "Napoleonic know-it-all" (heh), and then Sam goes into a profanity-laden rant in the store (classy!) about how Marcel is a gnat and so forth. For his part, Marcel chuckles that he thinks it's all kind of funny how Sam got the anger sin, and here he is having a flip out right in front of everyone. Sam lectures Marcel that he'll "get a lot farther in this competition" if he just is quiet and keeps to himself. I'm not sure how that follows, but... all right. I think Sam would have a much better argument if he would just shake his head and walk away. You never win when you care and the other person doesn't.

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