Top Chef
Sunny Delights

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Keckler: B | Grade It Now!
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Bye, Bye Birdsong

Colicchio arrives for his Sniff 'n' Sneer wearing a button-down shirt unbuttoned to a distressingly low level. And no tee-shirt underneath. And a fat gold chain. Checking in with Hung, Colicchio comments that because of his Immunity, he doesn't have to work very hard. "That's not my style," Hung tells him. "I'm going to push hard as if I didn't have it." Tre agrees with Colicchio that barbecuing is old hat for him, "I just woke up, I think I did this in my sleep." When he gets to Brian (MALARKEY!) and asks what he's making, Brian (MALARKEY!) cock-blocks him (when you cock-block a chef, is it a coq-block?) and tells him it's going to be a surprise. Colicchio asks Joey From New York if he thinks his grilled chicken drumsticks are gourmet enough. "I don't think it's gourmet enough, but it's barbecue -- you're supposed to have fun," Joey From New York tells him. Actually, you're not supposed to have fun, you're supposed to follow the form of the task, which is gourmet. Not fun. Gourmet. Colicchio tells the cameras that Sandee's butter-poached lobster isn't really barbecue, and it's like "putting lipstick on a pig." Okay, that expression is almost as random as Dan Rather's election night ramblings. Colicchio also thinks Howie is starting to grill too far in advance. Food Flurry.

Padma arrives with Gail and NORM! and the cheftestants put final touches on their dishes and stations before the guests show up. Lots of Mo√ęt is poured out, and Lee Shrager greets his guests. Micah serves her lamb with grilled Haloumi and pomegranate sauce. Lia offers a lettuce wrap with grilled shrimp and an Israeli couscous salad. Casey gives Colicchio some of her strip steak with smoked cheddar polenta, tomato salad, and bacon-wrapped shrimp. CJ explains his Caribbean theme with the New York steak he's serving with salt-baked pineapple, lentil puree, and dirty rice. Oh, so THAT'S what he was doing to the pineapple earlier and why it looked all white and melty -- he was covering it in a salt crust. Interesting. Sara N. points out her traditional Vietnamese barbecue with slices of grilled rib eye with pine nuts served in butter lettuce leaves with that pickled cucumber salad she was so worried about. "It's good," Padma mumbles to Colicchio over a mouthful of food. Brian (MALARKEY!) is bouncing around his station when Padma cuts through his crowd to try his sweet chili-glazed scallop, shrimp, and sea bass sausage with a ginger slaw. "Very nice sausage," Padma proclaims. "And she knows from sausage," Mathra announces. Tre is serving a peach barbecue-glazed wild salmon with a crab-avocado salad. One of the guests curses and throws her plate out, telling Tre he needs more acid. Bit of a dramatic reaction there, lady. Did you really need to make Bravo's bleeper go off? Tre says he can fix that. Again, we hear about Sandee's vanilla-poached lobster that she's serving with pancetta-wrapped dates and black truffle slaw. A guest thinks it looks great, and Sandee says, "It's been on the grill all day poaching in vanilla butter." Didn't she poach it the night before? Maybe not. CJ tells us, "There are technical rules to this competition, and I think that the protein portion of Sandee's dish, it's braised the day before. I don't really think that's a barbecue sort of dish."

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