topchef2What I’ve got on tonight from the end of last week’s liveblog: “A big event. Fancy guest judges. Everyone still hates Robin.” So that’s helpful.

Here’s to hoping Top Chef livens up the joint a little, it’s like a ghost town around here.

Glee just made me tear up a little bit and yes, I am slightly ashamed.

(FYI, my proofreader is out partying it up, so excuse any mangled English you may encounter.)

10:00: AT STAKE FOR THE WINNER: You too could become like Ilan Hall! Get in line!

10:01: Brother M. compares himself to Babe Ruth, while Not Jonah Hill talked to his mom on the phone. Because he lives with his parents, and that is COOL. COOL, DO YOU HEAR? Don’t judge him, because he is cooler than you AND pays no rent, you mortgage-carrying sucker.

10:03: Guest judge – Charlie Palmer. Charlie, I love your cookbook! Call me! Consider getting rid of that creepy moustache!

QUICKFIRE: Create a dish incorporating snack foods. Alexia snacks, specifically, because this is, of course, the Alexia Quickfire Challenge.

This comment has been brought to you by My Glass of Ice Water. It’s the My Glass of Ice Water comment.

10:06: NJH is not only cool, he went to culinary school, unlike all the hacks around him who don’t understand how flavors go together.

Oh, wait.

10:07: Padma’s got a great big belt on, and when I first looked up I thought she was all wrapped up like a surprise Lexus on Christmas morning. In a commercial. Because that doesn’t actually happen to real people.

10:09: Weed is going all fanboy over Charlie Palmer. It would be cute, if it were someone else.

I gotta say, the snack foods are not really the star of these dishes. I kinda miss the days someone could puree a snickers bar and stick it on the end of a Cheet-o. Not that that won, but it was ballsy in a dumb-ass stoner kind of way.

10:10: Top three – NJH, Brother Brian and Beardie.

NJH takes it. But don’t worry, I’m sure it’s not going to go to his head.

10:13: Commercials. You know, I think Mariah Carey might actually come off as dumber than Jessica Simpson in that Macy’s commercial. JSimp is at least engaged with chucking a submarine roll at Tommy Hilfiger’s head – not an inappropriate reaction to being faced with Tommy Hilfiger – but Carey is just playing with her wineglass like some kind of autistic savant.

10:14: ELIMINATION CHALLENGE: Pig challenge! Charlie Palmer once shot a wild boar outside his house. Then he wrestled a second boar to the ground and killed it with his bare hands, and he creeped a third to death with his ‘stache.

Everyone’s got a different part of the pig, and they’ve gotta make something to pair with Pinot Noir for a special event.

10:17: Off to Charlie’s restaurant for a Pinot tasting. There’s a glass-enclosed wine tower where “wine angels” in skintight black clothing fly around on wires fetching your bottle.


NJH knows his wine because there are 110 wines available by the glass at his restaurant, and because his parents let him drink wine at home.

10:20: I don’t dislike Robin, I don’t, but damn she talks a LOT. Montage of people studiously trying to ignore her.

Studious ignoring giving way to sniping. Who’s the only diplomatic one? Beardie. I think I’ve finally settled on my horse in this race; I’ll take Shiv for 2nd place and one of the brothers for 3rd. I know I should pick one, but I find them interchangeable.

10:22: NJH to Robin: “YOU’RE NOT MY MOM.” Which totally comes off as bad-ass, and not at all “whiny baby.”

10:26: Commercials. Raise your hand if you actually watch Million Dollar Listing. Is your hand up? You need a new hobby.

10:27: SuperSizeMe is taking advice from Weed. It seems to not occur to him that Weed might be throwing him under the bus. Not that I have any evidence of that; I just assume the worst. You know, because he’s a jackass.

10:29: Giant slabs of pork belly are terrifying.

NJH and Shiv both have the belly, but his dish is “heartier” and “more creative” than hers. He can say that with total confidence, because Shiv hasn’t shown herself to be much of a force in this competition.

10:30: Outright brother sniping. I think one of them is going to slice the other with the sharp edge of a plastic wrap box. No, really. They’re coming off as almost as little-boy snotty as NJH…but not quite.

Weed will not accept anything less than the finals, because we all know that second place is just first loser. (“Hell, son, I was drunk when I said that.”)

10:32: Brother Michael braised pork cheeks in root beer. Palmer and his ‘stache dig it.

You know, it’s half creepy, half Jeeves. I’m trying to keep the Jeeves front of mind when I have to look at it.

10:34: Huh, Palmer doesn’t think that NJH did a great job with the wine pairing. I bet his mom would stick up for him.

Beardie is THE CUTEST. He made a pate, and used hazelnuts because he’s been to the winery and knows that hazelnut trees grow there. I don’t know why that should make me love him more, but it does.

10:36: My TV just froze so I have no idea what Shiv did, but they like it.

Mousy made rillettes, which Dana Cowin from Food & Wine just compared to catfood. A witty event attendee pipes in with “it’s not a party in my mouth.” I’m laughing on the inside.

10:39: I’m a little pissy that Weed made kibbe, because I love kibbe to the same degree that I hate Weed. I guess I can take a little comfort in the fact that he totally mangled the pronunciation of that simple, simple world.

My hatred of Weed makes logical thinking fly out the window, and I can do nothing but loathe and take joy in less-than-stellar performance. I’m not proud, but I can’t deny what is.

Writing about it also keeps me from having to watch the Prius commercials where the grass is made of people. IT’S MADE OF PEOPLE. Creepy.

10:43: JUDGE’S TABLE: Shiv, Beardie and the Brothers are in the top.

Somehow, bringing out the “hairy” notes of a wine is a good thing. Maybe this is a stupid thing said by a non-wine person, but wouldn’t you want to keep hair flavors out of your wine in the first place?

10:45: WINNER: Beardie! He “dove deep into the wine.” Not literally, because he’s a big dude. He does not bring shame upon his pig tattoo.

10:46: Losers: Robin, Mousy and SuperSizeMe.

In the stew room, they’re being asswipes about Robin. Yes, she’s irritating, but you don’t get sent home just for being irritating. Weed calls her “grandma” again, and I momentarily lose sight of the screen as the white haze of hate obscures my vision.

10:49: I can’t tell if Tom Colicchio is genuinely amused by Toby Young, or if he’s giving him the old nod-and-smile. Like I am.

10:53: Pointless interlude. Pointless rehash of NJH and Robin. Somehow, he thinks that bringing up the “not my mom” comment will make him sound cool. Then everyone teases him for flirting with Robin, because they’re all 11 years old, and he totally can’t take it. He never had to develop a thick skin, because, you know, his mom is usually around to take care of the meanies.

10:57: Knifing time. SuperSizeMe has no confidence, Mousy made pet food, and Robin didn’t give enough pig, god only knows how.

10:58: SuperSizeMe is out. I don’t know that I agree with that one, but there you go.

NEXT WEEK: Restaurant / Brother Wars. And people still hate Robin.