It’s FINALLY time to crown the winner. I am ready for the season to be over because #60DaysIn Atlanta is premiering tonight in the same time slot and I want to make it a priority. I will be recapping it as soon as this goes up.
I still love Top Chef, but since Jim, Sylva and Sheldon are out I am really not as invested as I was. I am rooting for Shirley. I’ve never quite warmed up to Brooke.
The first order of business is for the two finalists to each pick three sous chefs. Shirley picks Casey, Katsuji, and then they find out the third sous chef will be picked by Tom and Padma. They bring out Jay, her Chef de Cuisine from her restaurant. Brooke picks Sheldon, Sam and Tom and Padma surprise her with the Chef de Cuisine from “all of her restaurants.” Does she have a ton of restaurants or a ton of closed ones? Because Shirley won first pick and took Casey who is Brooke’s BFF you can already tell Shirley is out for blood.
Shirley’s plan is to start off with a crudo of snapper. Fun fact, for some reason Whole Foods is emailing me their weekly specials. This week whole red snapper is $7.99 a pound. I am trying my best to get there for that. I love fish. I will not be making a crudo. I do need suggestions. For the second course she is making “top ramen” I only know that from the pouches I’ve seen in dorms. Sounds pedestrian. Don’t fuck this up Shirley. The third course will be some sort of suckling pig. The final course is rice pudding with no rice. I’m now really worried about Shirley. The theme for her meal is food memories. Her theme should be the four best dishes I can make to win this muthafucka.
Casey’s four courses begin with an oyster topped with pickled mustard greens. The second course is charred octopus with braised radishes. This has been the season of the radish. I still look everywhere I shop for exotic radishes. So far nothing. Someone sent me an email about radish seeds. Maybe I will grow some. Course three is braised pork belly. The final course is a chamomile flan. Her theme is local products. I think she is off to a better menu than Shirley, at least conceptually. However it all in how the dishes turn out. Still charred octopus has to beat top ramen, right?
It’s clear, Brooke and Shirley are not fond of each other. Shirley forgot to order pork belly for her dish. Shirley ordered suckling pig and pork belly as a backup. Brooke asks Shirley if she can have her pork belly. WTF? I’m sorry. It’s the finals. I am not helping out my opponent. Shirley tells Brooke she might let her have whatever she is not using. I don’t believe her.
That night, Shirley starts to back off her pledge to maybe give Brooke the pork belly. The final two head out to dinner together and arrive to see their husbands and Brooke’s son. I covet these knife sets they have. I have like ONE knife that is sharp in this house. It’s about three inches long. I call it the murder knife because if I am ever attacked in my kitchen that is the one I’m swinging for the jugular with. Shut up. Much like Wendy Williams, I am always prepared for THE KILLER in any room in my house. 🙂
It’s time to cook! Shirley has Katsuji butchering her piglets. He’s kosher. Shirley’s annoying chatter never stops. It’s driving Brooke nuts. Sam is very involved in making Brooke’s dishes. Shirley is struggling to make her top ramen noodles. Brooke’s oven is not cooking properly.Her flan is in danger. Shirley actually gives up her pork belly to Brooke. Big mistake. Huge.
I don’t understand how this is a progressive menu. I was thinking progressive dinner which is something we do in the south where we go to one house for the first course and each course is served at new location. It’s usually a church thing. I don’t understand how the term progressive is being used here. To me this is just a four course meal.
When Shirley comes out to serve her first course she sees her mom and her siblings at the table. She immediately gets choked up and her mom does too. This throws her. I remember when I used to be in shows that my mother in the audience would make me nervous as hell. I never wanted her there. Her mom doesn’t seem supportive of her culinary aspirations. Casey is thrilled to see her parents.
Jonathan Waxman is at the judges table. That would make me nervous. It seems as though Brooke’s oyster won the day. Sorry Shirley. I could have told you a crudo was not the way to go.
The second course is octopus versus top ramen. Brooke’s octopus once again wins hands down.
Course three piglet shank versus pork and beans. Shirley’s piglet shank was well received but so were er Brooke’s pork and beans. This was a tie.
The final dreaded dessert course is flan versus pudding. Shirley’s dessert is all fancy pants liquid nitro riceless rice pudding. Brooke is disappointed with her flan. Both dishes were dedicated to their mothers who are there. I think Shirley’s rich pudding may have rice after all. They hate Brooke’s dessert. They love Shirley’s. They REALLY love Shirley’s pudding. But I don’t think that is enough for my girl. It looks like a Brooke win to me. Unless they are editing it that way.
Shirley’s embrace with her mother is heartwarming. It’s like her mom is accepting her career choice for the first time. When her mother tells her in English that she is proud. I get a bit misty. Isn’t that what every female child wants to hear from their mother? That’s a win for Shirley. That’s all she needs.
Brooke seems used to her parents telling her she is great at everything. The Brooke’s mom who is the inspiration for the flan, because she is an award-winning flan maker says Shirley’s dessert was better. Ha!
It’s a long judges table. It seems a bit more even than the clips they showed us in the actual tasting. I still think they will choose Brooke but have my fingers crossed for Shirley. They all agree that Shirley’s dessert was their favorite dish of the night. Or not. During deliberations Gail says Brooke’s octopus was her favorite dish of the night. The flan was the worst dish. Tom has decided the winner as always. But they don’t tell us who he has selected. My money is on Brooke. But I hope I am wrong.
Everyone is there for the announcement. All the chefs from the season and the families.
Brooke wins. And I feel sad for Shirley. Gail spends a lot of time congratulating Shirley, as if she fought for her.