Marc Naimark's writing and interviews _____________________________________________________

Top Chef 12.5

Posted in Top Chef, Uncategorized by marcnaimark on 2014/11/15

tcCold open: Boring. Nothing to note. Katsuji annoys everyong. Aaron thinks that because his team won the “write a pleasing menu” challenge, he’s proven he’s a team player. But of course we say him whining and bitching in the kitchen. So many of the cheftestants didn’t seem to get what that challenge was about.


Guest judge is a chef who was a finalist for the James Beard Northeastern Division Junior Age Class Redhead Group Challenge Cup. He does have lots of tattoos. That’s not a good thing.

Challenge is to call out a competitor for a head-to-head challenge. It involves product placement so the less said the better.

Katie is making a baked bean out of pine nuts. That is not a bean. That is pine nuts. She adds that she isn’t at Top Chef to “play it simple and safe”. Katie made broccoli salad for her first challenge. Katie is full of shit.

Aaron says about his brother: “Every time him and I get together…”. Aaron is likely also capable of saying: “…our father gave him and I a thrashing”. I know I’m itchin’ to give him a thrashin’.

Katsuji has to smoke salmon. He says that when he thinks of smoke he thinks of fire. Katsuji may be on to something here.

Stacy’s made “spinach glass”. Tired of this shit.

Gregory is the winner among winners. Are you surprised?


It’s war! Quickfire winners vs Quickfire losers! War! Revolutionary war battles! It’s a pairing again, with points earned for the team. It’s war, so they have only two dollars a head at Whole Foods.

Aaron’s against Katie, as in that sudden-death QF when Aaron unfortunately didn’t die. He’s dissing Katie’s choice of making a dessert: “You don’t take cake to war”. You do, apparently take gazpacho, or the dish he’s making noodles and pork meatballs with  doshi broth, that well-known dish found in MREs. And of course, cake was essential to war.

Aaron’s doshi broth falls to the ground: “I don’t know how that possibly happened”. It didn’t possibly happened. It happened.

Tom says that wars always come down to the last battle. That sounds like a truism, but with examples like the Battle of New Orleans during the War of 1812, we know that there are battles that take place after the end of a war.

Aaron says: “If chocolate cake beats me today, I will shoot myself in the face.” We can only hope.

Hughnibrow describes Katie’s dessert as “pretty basic”. This is the description: “Imperial stout chocolate cake, smoked sour cream, pomegranate molasses macerated strawberries and basil pink peppercorn oil”. Basic. The judges come down on Aaron for this dessert slam. Katie wins, which makes me very happy.

They’ve been building up Katsuji as the “character”, so they can now dispense with Aaron. I’m saying Aaron’s out.

Tom tries to talk strategy and it’s dumb.

Aaron’s out. Good riddance. He says it’s a pleasure to “stand in the grace” of the judges. He’s the youngest. He didn’t go to culinary school. Blablabla. Fuck off.


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