Top Chef Boston Power Rankings
By Jason Lee
December 9, 2014
Fresh off his first individual win (Elimination or Quickfire), Doug takes the top spot in this week’s Power Rankings. Not only was he masterful in executing service during Restaurant Wars, his food in the past few episodes hasn’t been too shabby either. Padma loved his rabbit dish in the Thanksgiving episode, and Gail adored his pork shoulder dish in Restaurant Wars. Watch out for this one.
Though Greg ended up on the losing side of things in Restaurant Wars and perhaps should be faulted for letting Katie (who was in over her head) serve as Executive Chef, he drew raves for his haddock dish. Gail, on her Top Chef blog, said it was her favorite dish of the night, and I wouldn’t be surprised if other judges felt the same way. He’s rebounded nicely from his goose debacle.
Given her recent successes, I would have been willing to slot Mei above Greg, if it were not for the fact that her Brussels sprouts dish was over-seasoned during restaurant wars. Granted, most of the judges seemed to really enjoy her chicken liver toast, but in my view, this was yet another episode where Greg out-cooked Mei. She’s still my pick to finish as runner up to Greg.
Katsuji was a bit of a supporting actor during Restaurant Wars. His two dishes - hamachi sashimi and dry posole - seemed perfectly fine, but the main drama centered around his handling of Keriann’s dessert. I’ll be interested to see if he’s able to grab himself a spot in the finale. In my mind, the spot is his to lose.
I don’t place all of the blame on Katie for her team’s woes. Clearly, Keriann’s inept handling of service and training of her team’s wait staff seems to have contributed significantly to the team’s problems. But the fact remains that Katie’s beet dish received a lukewarm reception from the judges, and she seemed bent on avoiding taking any responsibility for transforming Keriann’s vanilla crêpe. She sure didn’t seem like a “Top Chef” to me.
Adam is a born performer, with a manic energy that equal parts endearing and irritating. It was a smart decision to put him in front of the house and he hit it out of the park. And his clam dish was well-received, drawing compliments on its flavor by Tom. That said, Adam has yet to make it into the top three of any challenge as an individual performer. It’s getting to the point where he’s going to have to break through or go home.
Melissa’s performance last week fell somewhere between mediocre and “meh.” Her scallop dish was not bad, but definitely on the salty side. Her biscuit cobbler was fine but neither inventive nor exciting. She’s been fortunate thus far to escape elimination on the basis of other chefs’ more egregious mistakes. How much longer can that strategy hold up?