Yes, it is
Saturday Sunday evening, a full three four days since the premiere of Top Chef: Las Vegas. One might wonder that I can be taken seriously as a faithful writer of recaps. I wasn't especially spectacular with my timing last season, either, but this time around, it's going to be even more challenging, being that I'll have to be up at the crack of dawn the next day for MY JOB, which will no longer be "student." I've just discovered, however, that Top Chef airs on our Bravo HD channel at 6 o'clock, which gives me ample time to watch, maybe even rewind a few scenes, and throw together my thoughts. Perhaps my efforts at finishing a recap on the very eve of the show's airing will be good practice for my everlasting attempts to improve my time management skills.
My other immediate impressions?
Wait-what is that I see? Is there a caberet in the Top Chef kitchen? Oh no, that's only the Stardust Showgirls, welcoming viewers and chefs to Vegas. What else did we expect?
Jen Z. isn't so great with the clams either, and finds herself impeded further when she cuts herself. Lovely, another gushing wound. Just what we all want to see in the kitchen. Mike Isabella is crazy-fast, on the other hand, rapidly going through his clams. Jesse is speedy quick with her prawns, and Mattin, to Jen C.'s chagrin, decimates his lobster, ripping off the heads like they were pencil erasers.
The announcement of the elimination challenge was unsurprising and rather unimaginative: Cook a dish based on one of your own personal vices. Showgirls, chips worth $15,000, and a stereotypical reminder that we're in Sin City-it's beyond irritating. I am cheered, however, as I begin to imagine how Jen C. will be able to craft a dish based on arrogance. This shouldn't be hard for her. The chefs are told they will be preparing their food at Cut, Wolfgang Puck's steak restaurant (Interesting side note: Tom and Katie Cruise are photographed at the Beverly Hills location on a regular basis-it's their fave).
Back in the kitchen, Kevin begins to prepare his arctic char, based on his vice of procrastination. At least he understands the task. Jen who I hate makes a drunken lobster stock, because she mistakenly believes her vice has something to do with drinking various forms of alcohol every night followed by poor decision-making. Jesse is adorably ruddy-faced when cooking, and I worry as she worries about making dry chicken. Please don't make dry chicken, Jesse! It's the kiss of death at judge's table! Mike Voltaggio has apparently confused Vegas with L.A. as he references plastic surgery and speaks suggestively about his rack of lamb.
The parade of dishes is almost exclusively inspired by the vices of alcohol and general excess. Yet another characteristic to add to the list of chef stereotypes: tattoos, a tendency to curse like a sailor, and drunkenness. Wolfgang and crew hate Hector's deep-fried steak, but they admire the Haitian's jerk bass with collard greens. Jesse DID overcook her chicken breast, unfortunately, but Mike V's rack of lamb was a winner-Wolfgang said that he'd have to be a professional in order to put a plate like that together. I'm liking him more and more. I can barely understand Mattin as he explains his dish-did he say biffalo?
Jennifer's chile rellenos made with seitan are a colossal failure, and Laurine's bacon doughnuts were compared to golf balls. Ash's parsley coulis was a lovely shade of green, and much to my tremendous disappointment, Jen C.'s poached halibut was a big favorite. In the end, Ron (the Haitian), Mike V., Kevin, and Jen C. were victorious, though I rolled my eyes when they dubiously left the stew room. Don't they know the winners are always called back to judge's table first?
Kevin is this season's Humble Hosea-he was extremely appealing as he talked about his dish-and he was declared the winner! Gosh, I sure know how to pick 'em. Jesse, Hector, Jen Z., and Eve were the first losers of the season, and even though I had hoped to discover how Italian and Mexican heritages might mix, I was glad to see Jen go. She deserved it, after all. Who uses seitan when they don't have to?