First of all, that was easily the worst Quick Fire in the history of the show. It came across as Padma looking for an excuse to hawk her jewelry line and suck up to Isaac Mizrahi (whose appeal as a “personality” has always been a mystery to me). Asking chefs to cook food with absolutely no concern for taste is, simply, idiotic. It’s a waste of food and an unforgivable waste of time. Why not just offer equal points for presentation? That at least would keep the chefs honest about what they prepared.
The elimination challenge was much more enjoyable, but it was terribly self-indulgent too. First of all, someone needs to tell the judges and producers that Lorraine Bracco isn’t charming. At. All.
At least that’s the case when she’s on Top Chef. She comes across as pretentious, loud-mouthed, crude, and boorish.
But the real self-indulgence seemed to come from Tom Colicchio. Basically all of his personal preferences trumped other considerations. He thinks risotto must be cooked a certain way (I actually agree with him) and that’s all we need to know. I respect his judgment but, did a dish of steamed mussels really deserve to win? According to Colicchio the dish was great because it reminded him of his childhood. Well, that’s touching. But I think Fabio was absolutely right that it wasn’t even an Italian dish.