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Thread: Top Chef New Orleans - 1/8 Show Discussion

  1. #11
    FORT Fogey
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    Re: Top Chef New Orleans - 1/8 Show Discussion

    We know from blogs and interviews that after they get the on air instructions for a challenge, production stops while the cheftestants ask as many questions as they have about the rules of the challenge. I'd be curious to know what happened in the discussion for this episode. Did anything come up about hte control that the two expert chefs had? I would like to know if they were told they had to cook the menu created by the expert, or if that was merely a guide. The Spanish team seemed like they took the ideas, but altered them to their own skills. The french team did seem to act as if they were doing exactly what they were told with no variation. Was that the rules? Or was that a lack of creative thinking?

  2. #12
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    Re: Top Chef New Orleans - 1/8 Show Discussion

    I thought the Spanish team followed the expert chef's instructions to the letter. Nina didn't like the idea of the potato salad, but made it exactly as instructed, and thought she would be going home for it. The guy who made the dessert wanted to change things, but the Spanish chef protested, and the dessert was kept traditional.

    I didn't think it was right that the judges asked Nick to resign - and even worse that they brought it up again after he declined. This isn't the first time that someone with immunity has had the worst dish. The producers shouldn't give immunity if they don't want this situation to occur.
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  3. #13
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    Re: Top Chef New Orleans - 1/8 Show Discussion

    My guess is that because Jacques brought up the idea of resigning and not Tom or Padma, they kept it in the show. Tom doesn't prompt chefs to consider quitting, in fact they have stopped several chefs from resigning before the verdict is handed down in the past (Howie in season 3 in the boat challenge -- he was grandstanding to try and save face, but he was eliminated anyway).

    It was totally within Nick's rights to refuse to step down -- he won immunity and that's how the competition goes. But I like that they didn't let him slip away without someone mentioning the elephant in the room. This show makes a big deal about integrity in the kitchen, and other chefs have been allowed to resign before (Mia in season 2, to prevent Elia from going home). A different chef might have fallen on his sword. Nick's not wrong for not dropping out, but I like that it was all aired for everyone to see and think about, especially Nick.
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  4. #14
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    Re: Top Chef New Orleans - 1/8 Show Discussion

    Quote Originally Posted by madlyophelia View Post
    Suzanne Crenn appeared to be calling all the shots in menu development. They made what she told them to make and Nick did assume the riskiest dish. Crenn should have fallen on the sword, taking responsibility for the horrid dish that even Justin wouldn't have served his own mother. It did not seem to be a problem with execution but with the basic concept of the dish and that was Crenn's fault. I thought it hysterical how the Spanish chef (Serrano?) was so vehemently appalled at the dish and didn't even try to be civil about it.
    I was actually a little bit shocked when those two were going after each other at the dinner table!

    I also wondered about the lack of input the chefs had in their menu. Did the French expert think the dish was delicious and well executed? She seemed to defend the fact that it was "modern", but I didn't really see her defend it in any other way or take responsibility for it conceptually.

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    FORT Newbie madlyophelia's Avatar
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    Re: Top Chef New Orleans - 1/8 Show Discussion

    Meant Dominique Crenn, not Suzanne in previous post. I have liked her in the past on Iron Chef/Next Iron Chef.

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    Re: Top Chef New Orleans - 1/8 Show Discussion

    Am I wrong in sensing that this season there are far more challenges than in the past in which the chefs are preparing dishes that aren't showcasing their own creativity? I'm fine that they're being challenged to cook cuisines that aren't in their own repertoire - after all, they're in New Orleans to showcase a lot of the New Orleans cuisine - but it seems that they're often instructed to cook or copy specific dishes. It's more like "Top Chef de Cuisine," the executor of someone else's vision, than "Top Chef," the visionary dish creator.
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  7. #17
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    Re: Top Chef New Orleans - 1/8 Show Discussion

    I don't think that the variety in challenges has been significantly different from most seasons. I think there has always been a variety of challenges to highlight what each chef does best, to cook for a large number of people, to cook under unsual circumstances or with unusual ingredients, and to test skills. In past seasons, I remember there being challenges that created circumstances that were just impossible to overcome -- like catering a wedding, including wedding cake, and having less than 24 hours to do it. Those kinds of things, where the judges complain about the poor quality of the finished product in spite of the crazy conditions, are worse than "cook this food that is famous in the region". If you're going to be known as a top chef, you should be able to show technical skills, creativity, leadership, teamwork, adaptability, etc. I'm glad they test more than simply "cook the very best dishes that you have already been cooking".

  8. #18
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    Re: Top Chef New Orleans - 1/8 Show Discussion

    I'm not happy with them asking Nick to consider quitting. They have never done that before, and I don't think it was fair to nick to put him on the spot. They should consider a rules change for future seasons, where chefs with immunity can go home if they produce the worst dish. Chefs with immunity have been called to judges table to be scolded for their bad dish, but never asked to quit.

    It sucked that Stephanie went home for great dishes, but it was her or Shirley. They were a part of a team and should have been more assertive with Nick, since he wouldn't go home. Nina was called out for this on the Lea Michele challenge, why not Stephanie and Shirley?
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  9. #19
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    Re: Top Chef New Orleans - 1/8 Show Discussion

    I think they were not called out for not being more assertive, because their concerns with his dish was not brought up at judge's table (that we saw). From watching the show, we know that Stephanie didn't think the nest should have been included on the plate, and she wasn't very assertive in pushing for her opinion. But at judge's table, it didn't come up. They didn't say much about the nest, focusing more on the sauce. And Stephanie didn't attempt to protect herself by saying that she knew it shouldn't have been that way, but he did it anyway. If she had, I would guess she would have been called out for not being very assertive. I think the judges tend to call those things out more when a cheftestant is trying to defend his or her own weaknesses by pointing to someone else's problems. They didn't do that this time, partly because the judges did it for them.

  10. #20
    FORT Fogey Florimel's Avatar
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    Re: Top Chef New Orleans - 1/8 Show Discussion

    I think Nick was perfectly within his rights not to resign. He won his immunity fairly and squarely and immunity means you are safe, no matter what. I have no problem with the judges telling him that if he was not immune, he would have left, but that's it.

    It's an easy issue to solve. Stop giving immunity for quick fires at all and simply give them money or prizes. End of problem.
    AcookerTV likes this.
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