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Top Chef: Seattle Recap

By Kim Hollis and David Mumpower

December 4, 2012

Welcome to Loserville, population you two.

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As for Brooke’s seafood salad, the judges note that it looks like it came straight out of a 1950s Time-Life cookbook. Naomi is a little unhappy with the green beans, though. What we’ve learned from the owner of Beast thus far is that everything needs to be cooked exactly the way she wants it, or it’s wrong.

Chrissy’s salad is overdressed and the croutons are soggy. The dish is pretty much overwhelmingly rejected. The owners of Canlis are clearly disappointed that this signature dish did not meet the standards of their restaurant. Chrissy is in a lot of trouble.

The marinated herring from Lizzie is called delicious, and the judges love her boldness in putting those saltine crackers right on the plate. Amused, Tom notes that back in the 1950s, the crackers probably would have been served in their packaging. This dish is a big hit.

Finally, John Tesar’s clam dish doesn’t get a lot of commentary, but the judges are pleased with it. They have not complaint.

Back in the kitchen, people are having trouble hearing each other, and John is struggling to communicate with the kitchen – and Carla. He advises her that she needs to go communicate with the guys manning her squab on the grill, because a lot of her dishes are being sent back because they are undercooked. She comments that she thinks that the squab should be cooked medium rare, but she supposes that people must want it to be a little be more done than that. Even so, she only meekly approaches the grill, and does not bother to taste her food. She believes that it’s going to be crispy enough, though she doesn’t seem to have any real evidence to back that up.




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The second set of dishes comes through, and this grouping is composed of the following:

  • Sheldon’s fresh Hawaiian mahi mahi, which seems like it ought to be right in his wheelhouse.


  • The whole milk-fed squab from Carla looks pretty bloody on the plate, though we suppose it could be a reduction instead.


  • Micah has made mixed vegetables. BOR-ING! Seriously, this dish looks like the same thing I get at Texas Roadhouse.


  • Stefan & Kristen have collaborated, combining his liver dish with her French fried onions. Liver is disgusting, but this looks pretty fantastic.


  • A double cut New York steak from Bart is pretty average-looking, but is in keeping with the simple theme of the evening.


  • It sounds like something from a horror film – Gargantuan baked Idaho potato. Nonetheless, Josie is serving it with tonight’s meal. Once again, this looks like a pretty run-of-the mill restaurant potato. There’s nothing too special here. Then again, we might have said the same thing about Lizzie’s mashed potatoes earlier this season.


  • Finally, we get to CJ’s shish kabobs with pilaf and Kristen’s side of mushrooms. The meat appears to be mealy and the pilaf mountain looks like it’s trying to achieve sentience, sort of like the dish that Lane Meyer’s mom serves in Better Off Dead that slithers off the table. We are not fans of mushrooms, so they look nasty to us, but that’s no reason to believe that the judges will dislike them.



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