City & State or ZIP Tonight, this weekend, May 5th...
City & State or ZIP
City & State or ZIP Tonight, this weekend, May 5th...
City & State or ZIP

“Top Chef” — Crabby in D.C.

Curried eggplant for the win

Curried eggplant for the win

For last night’s very special episode of “Top Chef,” the merry band of foaming, glazing,  deconstructing, brunoiseing masters of flavor left the corridors of political power for the idyll of Rappahannock County in Virginia. There, they encountered a table stretching through the field (and apparently set for the entire court of Versailles) as well as all kinds of ingredients that had been baking in the sun for untold hours.

But first they had to complete the regionally significant crab challenge, and after a few tittery jokes, they hacked up the poor creatures and subjected them to the indignations of “Asian treatment.” Delicious!

Our guest judge was Patrick O’Connell of the Inn at Little Washington, Kenny got the win for his sour curried eggplant, and you know who was sent packing. His initial is T. He was the hometown guy. He makes boring barbecue and unexciting blue crab that he doesn’t submit to Asian treatment because that’s not what good people do to blue crabs. I’m not going to even utter his name lest I be accused of spoiling the delayed gratification shock and awe that people with those DVR things get to experience.

What did you think? Is this a boring season?

27 comments Add your comment

the fish

July 15th, 2010
10:51 am

Boring is an understatement. Quick…name four contestants. Can’t do it. Homogeneous as can be. The challenges are equally as dull. Cook with blue crab? Wow…thrilling. Not. I miss the days of Mikey making a phallic treat out of a vending machine. That was entertaining. This is dull, dull, dull. The “Work of Art” show that follows is somewhat more amusing than Top Chef.

M. Ricci

July 15th, 2010
11:00 am

I haven’t watched the show yet (it’s on my DVR) and you just essentially told me who left and the funny thing is that I can’t even think of the hometown guy whose name starts with T. So I guess it’s *not* the most exciting season we’ve seen.

However, my husband would disagree about the excitement level… have you *seen* Padma’s post-childbirth breasts? Hubby never misses Top Chef! LOL…


July 15th, 2010
11:24 am

Agreed – I’m bored to death with it. It makes it even more intolerable to have to have the uber-macho-I’m-the-best-why-don’t-they-see-it attitude of a number of the guys every few minutes.

The “alpha-male”? Really? Adults, professional adults, are actually concerned with being the “alpha-male”?

And did you really think roasting some turnips is worthy of 3-4 hours worth of cooking?

But I do have to admit, I was surprised when T. was eliminated. I thought the little short one should have gone.

[...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by ajcdinecritic, John Kessler. John Kessler said: “Top Chef” — Crabby in D.C. [...]

Julie M

July 15th, 2010
11:40 am

Am I wrong in thinking that every elimination challenge thus far has involved teams? I think they’re trying to spice up the show, pun intended, with the drama that having folks compete in pairs or as teams causes. If I want snarky backbiting between contestants to be the main focus, rather than cooking prowess, I’ll watch Hell’s Kitchen. And yeah, 3-4 hours for turnips? Or a salad?


July 15th, 2010
12:58 pm

This season reminds me a great deal of a basketball game. You can miss almost all of it, then tune in for the last 5 minutes to see who wins. In this case, it’ll probably come down to Kenny, Angelo and some other person. The rest are pretty forgettable.

GA Peachy

July 15th, 2010
1:48 pm

Definetely not the most exciting season, but I will still watch. These ego tripping chefs are actually funny though, especially when they cut from them talking about how great they are, and then you see them loose the next quick fire or challenge. Hillarious! Who’s the best again?


July 15th, 2010
2:26 pm

When are they not boring? Can’t think of a more boring thing to pass time than watching people cook. YAWN.


July 15th, 2010
2:38 pm

it just seems to be filled with ego and no real talent. they talk big but i have yet to hear the judges RAVE about any of them. so, yes, boring. sad, but true.


July 15th, 2010
2:43 pm

The only exciting thing this season is seeing what Padma is wearing.

[...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Bobbie Hayes and Bhavani, accessAtlanta. accessAtlanta said: 'Top Chef' recap: Cooking with crabs and … hey, is it getting boring in here? [...]


July 15th, 2010
3:18 pm

Hmmm….needs more Gail.


July 15th, 2010
3:41 pm

OMG, I thought it was just me. Top Chef Masters only holds a place for me, while I think of TC as the real deal. It inspires me to read recipes, cookbooks, blogs and experiment with different spices and ingredients. Not so much this season. I actually caught part of the marathon of reruns the other day which also confirmed that the chefs were more interesting and visibly passionate about their culinary point of view. I know these folks are experienced and knowledgeable, but they seem incredibly pedestrian, like a corporate executive chef, not like someone whose restaurant I’m going to save up for and whose food I lust for.


July 15th, 2010
3:48 pm

All of these so-called “reality shows” have taken nose dives. None of them are what they started out as. They used to be entertaining…now they are a huge YAWWWWWN. I’d rather watch my weed-killer work.


July 15th, 2010
4:05 pm

Disagree about this season. I think it’s fine. Things will start to pick up with restaurant wars. My one knock on this season is the annoyingly long commercial break they take near the end of the episode. The show breaks for commercial, returns for a 30 second vignette, and then breaks again for a second full commercial break. Almost as frustrating as the last episode of “Lost”.

SWAT Native

July 15th, 2010
4:05 pm

I agree that the real competition comes down to Kenny or Angelo. I think this season is more boring than others because no one has stepped out as the villain you love to hate.

And yes, Padma is looking real good this season.


July 15th, 2010
4:08 pm

What a lackluster season. Even the addition of the delicious Eric Ripert hasn’t helped. The talent level just doesn’t seem to be there, so they have to focus on manufactured conflict. The most interesting part of the show should be the food, but it’s all been so forgettable. Maybe last season just set the bar too high.

Top Chef’s limelight has totally been stolen by the splendid Work of Art.


July 15th, 2010
5:48 pm

So, JK – can we take from your much-shortened tome that you, too, are bored with this group? b.o.r.i.n.g.

John Kessler

July 15th, 2010
9:45 pm

Colly — Truth be told, I’m not actually watching anymore. I’m just trying to give people a forum to discuss the show, and I’m reading the other postmortems so I can get a sense of each episode to introduce it.


July 16th, 2010
7:29 pm

JK – Ah…guess that’s not too big of a surprise. Like you, maybe, I’m just not feeling it this year – but I really miss your postmortem hilarities. Will have to keep getting my fix from your other blog and AJC offerings…good enough. :)

B. Thenet

July 17th, 2010
7:30 am

Not only are the chefs dull, with the exception of our kooky local gal who already got run off, but their food is as well.

Outside the top two guys, who has game in this one? Not only that, but there appear to be too few chefs that even have their own kind of food identity. No molecular gastronomy. Other than the one top dog who leans asian, I cannot identify anyone with their own particular style other than “New American” which is pretty boring when everyone is trying to do it at the same time.


July 17th, 2010
6:56 pm

DVR or VCR, does it really make a difference? Some people just aren’t able to watch their favorite shows at the EXACT time they come on, and definitely don’t want to have things ruined when people are so quick to get the word out. Not saying that you’re guilty of that….I’ve learned to steer clear of the Internet when I haven’t seen something yet and don’t want the “surprise” of seeing it posted before I’m ready. Just saying, I do understand. And to answer your question, YES, this season is so far, putting us to sleep…bring on SOMETHING exciting already!!

Colly~ I agree with you!


July 17th, 2010
7:27 pm

I think this season is boring because the contestants are really not that good. Heck, makes me think that I should audition. Cutting veg for soup in different sizes… putting salad in a bowl… roasting microscopic pieces of potato and turnip only to throw in asparagus for color… failing to season things… gimme a break… Who doesn’t know these things? Oh yeah, my ex-wife…. Yet I will continue to watch… much like watching a wreck… One question though, Tosh.No, if you find watching cooking shows boring, isn’t commenting on them on this blog, even more lame?


July 19th, 2010
9:23 am

I think that last season set the bar really high. You knew pretty early on that Kevin, the Voltaggio’s and at least 2-3 other contestants were excellent chefs. The judges constantly remarked as to how talented the chefs were. We haven’t seen that level of performance from really anybody this season. It’s clear that Angelo and Kenny are destined for a deathmatch in the finals but other than that there really isn’t anyone that is standing out as great.

Still it’s a show worth watching, anything that delays me from having to watch the Kardashians Storm the World or whatever that crap is my wife makes me watch is A-OK in my book.


July 19th, 2010
7:26 pm

Kelly Licken is great… I ate at her restaurant in Vail last week and had an incredible meal. She is charming and understated. I hope she pulls out a win here.


July 19th, 2010
11:15 pm

Previous seasons have been about the food and the chefs. Now it seems like they are trying to make it interesting by making it like Survivor; harsh climate, romance, alliances etc. When will someone say, “I didn’t come here to make friends”. To say it is boring is a sad statement about my life that I am actually watching.


July 20th, 2010
1:57 pm


Uttering names within the text is acceptable for those of us with “with those DVR things.” It is the picture of the eliminated/winner or the eliminated/winner’s name in the title that should be avoided. As much as I want to see what on Food and More I have learned to wait until I’ve watched the show after being spoiled at least twice this season.

BTW, keep working on Townsend for blog worthy articles.