Liveblogging Top Chef Vegas: Episode 5

Last week a panoply of French chefs were forced to eat food prepared by Top Chef contestants. They did a pretty good job…except Hector, who I thankfully no longer have to try and decipher, although I’m sure he’s a very nice person if you can understand him.

See you at ten!

LAST WEEK: Jesse got the boot in the Quickfire, the show gathered every great living French chef that Americans would have heard of, and one of the brothers won them over. I’m still not sure which one, so I’m sticking with Brother I.

10:01: With so many contestants, they had to add an extra bar onto the opening theme music to accommodate them. Heh.

10:02: Brother II doesn’t like to brag about his Michelin star…except when he does, like just now on national television. He thinks he, his brother and the execrable Weed are the best chefs.

10:03: Neckerchief is French, Basque in fact. Did you know? I know the show doesn’t mention it often.

10:04: QUICKFIRE:  Guest judge Tim Love! He once chicken-fried a strawberry, bless his heart. The challenge: cooking with cactus, winner gets $15K.

Brian: “Who’s going to wuss out and use the cactus pears?”

10:06: Weed is curing his cactus in salt and serving it raw. So why is he sweating to intensely? Mousy doesn’t really know what to do with cactus, but she’s not comparing herself to everyone else. Code for: “I know I suck.” Neckerchief doesn’t know either, so he’s chucking it into tequila. A man after my own heart.

10:08: Haitian Boat Guy is the new Hector, in terms of my complete inability to understand him.

Beardie’s comment: “Good, but slimy.” Are those things compatible? I don’t know about you, but for me slimy cancels out good.

10:09: A lot of people are using the cactus as a sauce or relish component. Step it up, people.

Tim Love is inscrutable. Except when he doesn’t like you, and then he makes a wonderfully blatant “yuck” face.

10:11: Sucky: A brother, SuperSizeMe and Haitian Boat guy, who served rancid crab. The good: Neckerchief, Weed, Mousy.

Weed wins.


10:12: One of the brothers: “[Weed] deserved to win, he worked with the product well. But I’d rather be able to put good flavors together than take the slime out of a cactus.” Code for: “I am a giant douchebag.” I can only take one major dickweed per season, Bravo.

10:14: Commercials: Is it just me, or do you think of “Derelicte” from “Zoolander” every time a commercial for Dualiste comes on? Okay, just me. And Brian.

10:16: ELIMINATION: Cowboy cooking! Outside, on a ranch. But your food’s gotta be high-end. And they get to spend the night on a ranch.

Ooh, they have to shop before they know what kind of equipment they have to deal with. Suck!

10:18: Mousy: “I’ve learned to be a MacGuyver when it comes to cooking.” She can sear arctic char with a  rubberband, paperclip, and roll of toilet paper: NO HEAT REQUIRED. At first I thought, “You can blow things up?” But then I remembered that’s MacGruber from Saturday Night Live.

Shiv is unhappy with the unknown.

10:20: Driving to the ranch, Neckerchief astutely points out that they’re in the desert and there are cacti. You’re only on a ranch outside Las Vegas, Neckerchief. Genius!

They’re cooking in fire pits. AWESOME. There is a chuck wagon, containing lots of bourbon. DOUBLE AWESOME.

10:21: Neckerchief is excited because they do a lot of camping in the Basque country. Where he’s from. In case you didn’t know. There seem to be quite a few people who were raised in the woods and / or were hobos.

Not Jonah Hill “doesn’t believe in camping.” Really? Because you’re camping right now. Also, shut up and camp.

10:23: Brian: “Where is the refrigeration? That would be my concern.” That’s my safety-conscious guy. You could get eaten by a coyote, but has the milk soured? Stay tuned to find out!

10:27: Not Jonah Hill is still whining about camping and cooking in the desert. He is so, so, SO much less funny than he thinks he is. That is, not at all. He’s actually sucking the humor from those around him

10:28: Running! Chaos! Pots banging! Complaining! Yelling!

Several people are making ceviche to avoid dealing with the fire pits altogether. I think several people are lame. It just so happens that those circles coincide, like the world’s most boring Venn diagram.

10:29: Haitian Boat Guy is searching for a sword. I don’t know why, but I hope it’s because he wants to run Weed through. Not that I advocate murder, but I’m not the one asking for the sword here.

10:31: I’m officially done with calling anything that’s been marinated in booze “drunken.” DONE. I decree that everyone else be done as well.

10:32: Padma is actually dressed somewhat appropriately, and not like an old Western Victorian hooker, like you’d expect. Hooray for personal growth!

These ranchers? I’m pretty sure they’re ranch guests on an exciting outing. I wonder how much extra they had to pay?

10:35: Tim Love’s cowboy hat and flowery purple shirt make me happy. The judge’s dislike of Weed’s food makes me happy.

Not Jonah Hill’s sad-looking tuna sandwich does not make me happy.

10:36: Colicchio spits out Neckerchief’s ceviche. His learned commentary: “It’s gross.”

Okay, that old lady is NOT a rancher. She looks like Brian’s grandma’s sister. Florence, in case you were wondering. She’s been an extra in major films before, so I wouldn’t be surprised to see her pop up here.

10:38: Shiv is not one of the people who made a ceviche, or “seveech.” One of the brothers is also praised; I don’t know if it’s the douchey one or not. For all I know, they’re both douchey.

Hairbrush seems to be doing well on the cooking front, if not the shampoo front.

Beardie made duck with mole. I have to say, every week I love him more and more.

10:39: Okay, that guy is totally not a ranch hand either, he’s a biker who plays in a Black Label Society cover band. Or he’s actually in Black Label Society, hard to say.

10:40: I will pay cash money to the person who can teach me how to tell the brothers apart without having to look up at the screen.

10:42: Commercials: – making low-budget but surprisingly creepy commercials since August 2009.

10:43: Pointless interlude! Beardie: “Horseshoes is one of the more entertaining things that has ever been invented.” He is amazingly good at it. I have to take a minute to think about whether this makes me like him more, less, or doesn’t change anything.

10:47: In the stew room, everyone knows someone had some skunky-ass seafood.

First to be called, the top 4: Hairbrush, Mousy and both Brothers. The judges must have loved them, because this is just two minutes of circle-jerking.

10:48: WINNER: Brian, AKA Brother I, AKA Might Be A Douchebag.

Okay, after he talks shit about his brother in his post-victory interview, he’s definitely a douchebag. Unnecessary.

10:49: Losers: Robin, Neckerchief and Haitian Boat Guy. As Brian points out, each one of them got a “That’s disgusting” from the judges at some point.

10:50: Robin is talking about steak and sausage and barbecue even though she served grilled romaine and ‘drunken’ prawns.

Neckerchief’s ceviche actually made Tim Love “flipping sick.” Shouldn’t that mean automatic fail?

10:52: Haitian Boat Guy’s food was good, but his drink was apparently so heinous that he landed in the bottom. Had it been regurgitated? How can a beverage be THAT bad?

10:54: Commercials: Jessica Simpson – so stupid that she’s laughing all the way to the bank, or actually just so stupid?

10:57: Voltaggio Brothers sounds like the name of a family plumbing business in Staten Island.

10:58: Haitian Boat Guy made a nasty drink. Neckerchief made some nasty cod. Robin made some nasty prawns. LOSER: Neckerchief.

The Basque country mourns tonight. I’m sorry, Euskadi.

NEXT WEEK: Penn and Teller. Wasn’t there a magic-themed challenge in Masters with Doogie Howser? And it creeped me the fuck out?

Fantasy Top Chef: Here

33 thoughts on “Liveblogging Top Chef Vegas: Episode 5

  1. Yay, I’m here for the live part! I hope Ashley’s “I miss my family” means she’s getting knifed tonight. And since when do they get to call home?

  2. Amanda, my thoughts exactly.

    And Michelle, “Weed wins. Dammit.” were my thoughts exactly. It seems like there are a lot of douchebags this season. I’m intrigued to see whose food Colicchio just spat out.

  3. Also, Brother’s comment “I’m not cooking for the cowboys”? Pretty much EXACTLY what Hung said in the cowboy cookoff back in Season 3.

    And Ashley (Gumby) is either going to kick ass or fail, with all her so called childhood “experience”.

  4. I, as well, totally have a crush on Beardie. Also happy that Weed’s food was mediocre. He’s obviously not going home, but it wasn’t great either. Seems like it might be Neckerchief or Robyn?

  5. “I’m officially done with calling anything that’s been marinated in booze “drunken.” DONE.”

    ^ THIS.

    Also, how can you NOT taste your food before sending it out?

  6. Beardie’s mad horseshoe skillz make me smile. I’m not sure if I’m the only southern commmenter at the moment — do ya’ll play horseshoes up there?

  7. Re: telling the bros apart without looking.

    Brian has a deeper voice. Michael is whiny. Also Michael talks more so if it is some long ass sentence… it’s probably Michael.

    If it’s a short “Thanks”, then it’s probably Brian.

  8. @amy

    Yes – at least in MN. My farmer uncles had horseshoe pits on their properties. I remember not being able to toss the horseshoe far enough. Of course this was about the same time I was being taught how to fire a shotgun and being thrown back on my ass after each shot.

  9. Aaaah, from what Nick says, sounds like Brother Mike is the douchebag? I don’t know, I sure as hell can’t tell them apart.

    As for who’s going home, I’m not sure (between Frenchie and ADD).

  10. Favorite line of the night:
    Mattin: “Maybe ceviche isn’t the best for cowboys.”
    Like he said. Especially when it’s still raw.

    BUT WAIT …
    Before I could hit “Speak!”, Padma shares that “I’ve actually had bull’s testicles.”

    So hard to choose!

  11. “since when is the w in sword silent?”

    I keep saying it and it would be indistinguishable from ‘sord’.

    I don’t know how you could tell the brothers apart, but if it’s Brian talking, why wouldn’t you want to look?

    Was there a little sparkle to that one look between the Mousy and Tim Love?

  12. So does that mean I’m not drunken the next time I marinate myself in booze?

    I have no idea which brother is which. And I just wanted Weed to go home. Can’t they have him ride out on the tails of the French guy’s neckerchief?

  13. Yes, Brother Bryan (older by 2 years, therefore infinitely more mature?) has the deeper voice and is much more concise in his interviews. He also tends to cook more traditional food. Michael (tattooed, goateed, tanned, whiny) busts out the liquid nitrogen and rambles on about how he’s not changing his awesome ways. I tend to see Bryan as more confident-almost-arrogant, where as Michael is cocky-showing-off-to-prove-himself.

    I still like both of them, even though Michael needs a smack upside the head.

    Fucking Weed. HAAAAAATE.

    Yay, horseshoes! One of my best friends has a regulation pit in his yard, in Central Jersey. Everyone had them when I was a kid in Washington State, in the 70s. I’ve got the forehead scar to prove it. Helpful hint: make sure all toddlers are secured before pitching a ‘shoe. Catching a skull on your backswing totally kills the party mood.

  14. Brian = cute, humble, “thanks” guy who made the yummy porkloin and polenta that WON.
    Mike = Michelin-starred douchebag with something to prove b/c his brother is actually the better cook

    WTF? Ceviche in desert heat? You have firepits. GRILL IT people! And funny, when I saw Padma I thought, “What the Haaaaayyuulll is she wearing?” :) :) Great post as always…and yes, we heart Beardie. Who doesn’t love mole?

  15. I was surprised by Padma’s outfit. She normally wears skirts so short you can see her spleen, but when it’s 100+ degrees outside, she covers her legs completely. Go figure.

    Haitian Guy is officially Fezzig to me. That’s exactly who he sounds like.

    I was enjoying watching some of the contestants squirm at the idea of camping and outdoor cooking. I was pleasantly surprised at the ones who didn’t think it was a big deal. The underdogs had a shot. Too bad so many of them blew it.

    Brian has a deeper voice than his brother’s and is more emotionless when he speaks. He’s also a bit cuter and less of a douchebag than this brother. That’s how you tell them apart.

    Mattin was a waste of TV space. I never paid the least bit of attention to him. He might as well go. I actually stayed awake to see him eliminated.

  16. I’m indifferent to Robin (ADD), but I wish she got the boot instead of Neckerchief, if for no other reason than to hear him say “cactrus” again.

    Oh, and I’m waiting to hear HBG say “Booyaka” again too.

  17. The brothers: Brian is the disapprover. Is the person onscreen disapproving or talking about “tradition”? Then it’s Brian. If the person is using either molecular gastronomy techniques or Japanese ingredients, it’s Mike. Because he’s a gastroposer.

  18. Padma’s spleen? HAHAHAHAHAH! And wow. I just have to say that if for no other reason I am glad le petit Basque is gone because of that bloody neckerchief. I know many, many French people and NONE of them wore neckerchiefs. (Or would that be neckerchieves?) Not even the Basques.

    RE the plumbing bros. Bryan is always clean shaven, Michael? Not so much.

    And Weed needs to go or I’m going to have a coronary watching the show.

  19. …And not to be a brainless sycophant, but let’s say you were Brian. If you had a brother who was as big a pain in the arse as Michael, wouldn’t you talk smack about him, too?

  20. We had to rewind and rewatch Beardie’s horseshoe throw three times. I think it’s the first time the show has caught my fiance’s attention this season. Well, that and Hairbrush’s fashion taste, he calls her Cera Michael.

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