“Top Chef All-Stars” Recap (8.06): Old Cheftestants and the Sea


Over at Team BlaMarBio (look, I’m tired of typing full names), Fabio prep all the veggies and Prof. Blais bosses him around like an unpaid intern. Papa Bear Tom comes to make the rounds. He seems skeptical of Team BlaMarBio’s one dish strategy. He seems even more skeptical of Dale’s store-bought tortillas. But he seem the most skeptical of Tiffani’s assertion that Bluefish is “lovely.”

The diners come in and the chefs switch to used car salesman mode. Carla and Fabio can chat it up with the best of them, and she even squeals a cute little “Of course I caught the fish!” to a doubting diner. But the judges aren’t there for chit-chat, they’re there for cocktails – no, I mean food. No one keep Padma from her hootch, people.

The guest judge is Kerry Heffernan, the executive chef at South Gate Restaurant and also Tom’s best fishing buddy. Gail is there too. Hi, Gail! They try the first two teams dishes. Dale, Carla and Tre all impress them and earn yummy noises. But Team BlaMarBio’s beans are overcooked and foam in unnecessary. I agree, foam outside of the carbonated or frothy beverage world is always unnecessary.

The second set of teams now has their chance to dazzle the judges. But first, Jamie has to get her fish out of the pan. Gail, speaking as a surrogate for all of us watching at home, exclaims “Jamie Lauren, let’s see what you’re made of” before biting into her offering. What they find is sorta bland and watery. They’re also not impressed by Tiffani’s dish, which they call “crude.” Someone fire up the Bat Signal, the chefbians are in trouble.

In the Stew Room, Carla, Dale, Tre, Angelo, Mike and Tiffani are called in first. Marcel says it doesn’t mean it is because they were the favorites but Antonia knows better. And she is right. They were the favorites and Carla wins the challenge. Hootie Nation, rejoice! Plus she wins a trip to Amsterdam. That deserves a Hootie Dance, don’t you think?

But then Marcel has to go be a total ass and say he’s not super ecstatic because that means they are on the bottom. Wow, way to be the worst good sport ever. The other chefs always clap supportively for the winning chef. You just ruined Hootie’s moment. She actually feels guilty for celebrating. I hate you forever, Marcel, with your dumb Wolverine hair and your borderline drinking problem.

The least favorites proceed in and get their comeuppance. Team BlaMarBoi gets taken to task for just making one dish – and not that well. Antonia gets told if her teammates hadn’t made two weaker dishes, she might have won the trip to Amsterdam instead. Maybe Carla can send you back some wooden clogs as a consolation prize. Jamie and Tiffani’s dishes get criticized for opposite reasons – Jamie’s was too light and didn’t have enough flavor and Tiffani’s has too strong and had too much bad flavor because she left the bloodline in. And then the judges twist the knife into Antonia once more and ask if she felt she helped her teammates enough. She tears up. Padma made someone cry, let’s call it a season, folks.

After a little more Colicchio tongue lashing, the moment finally arrives. Who gets PYKAGed? Tiffani and Jamie. Double Team Rainbow elimination. What does it mean?

Tiffani says she worked hard to change her experience and her perception from Season 1. I have to say, she certainly did. And then she says she is going home to “the most amazing girlfriend. Kelly is everything to me.” Awww. Jamie says she is “bummed” she didn’t cook on two challenges and that the judges didn’t like the one dish she was most proud of, “but this has been an amazing opportunity and I wouldn’t change it for the world.” Let’s pour a little out for our chefbians, ladies. Goodbye, Team Rainbow. You will be missed.

And with that, so end the Top Chef All-Stars recaps as well. I’ll still be watching the season, so feel free to follow or tweet me all things Top Chef @dorothysnarker. Thanks for reading!

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