At Judges Table the following happened:|
Danielle – Elvis thought she harnessed the beautiful qualities of lavender. Dann raved about the homemade root beer. Gail wants to follow her around to make her honey candy. Elvis critiqued her useless garnish as an 80s relic – sort of like David Hasselhoff. Theoden loved the pistachio ice cream.
Yigit – Dann loved the strawberry dish as foofy and girly, but then sophisticated thanks to the lemongrass. Gail was unhappy that the wait staff slathered on the consommé at the table. Dann found his cakes to be rather moist. Elvis was impressed by the pineapple, which retained acidity despite a five-hour braising.
Morgan – The soufflé was a problem. A big problem. The fourth dish grabbed Dann by the legs and shook her. The German cake was phenomenal, and while he’s a macaron machine, they are really good.
What it came down to, if I can translate is this. Morgan shot very, very high and crashed too hard on the soufflé. Danielle made a very good low-difficulty progression and would have won if Yigit had made a similar error as Morgan did with the soufflé. But he didn’t. His was also, as you would expect from Yigit, full of technical skill and that was the difference.
• Yigit bitching about the air conditioning being cranked up by Morgan to Yigit’s discomfort. Um, did Yigit have a broken leg or something? Why couldn’t he just get up and make it warmer?
• Danielle described seeing Claudia, Faulkner and Sherry waiting to help as being akin to a filmmaker having Scorsese, Spielberg and Ron Howard helping. Um, I like Parenthood and Apollo 13 as much as anyone, but boy, one of these three is not like the other…
• I forgot Danielle and Morgan were in the bottom three of the first challenge. Reminds me of Survivor: Vanuatu when Chris so badly mangled the first challenge and almost got booted. You never know…
• Morgan on his menu – “If it’s not good enough, then I’m not good enough.” Harsh self-assessment. I’m reading the Bill Carter book about the Leno-Conan drama – that kind of self-assessment reminds me of some of the late night geniuses, especially Letterman. It’s often a sign of a truly talented person. Even one who has black pepper issues (hysterical facial expression from Claudia during that discussion).
• I felt for Yigit during his heartfelt revelation of his father’s support of his dream, and subsequent lost battle to cancer. Really, I did. Still don’t like him, but I am happy for him if he felt this honored his father’s faith in him.
• Claudia on Morgan – He’s the typical male pastry chef. Although, judging by the male pastry chefs we just saw…not sure if that is a complement or an insult!
• And I have given Bert lots of flack for pretention in the past during Masters, but boy, did he make me laugh tonight. After Claudia dissed Morgan for a while, she later wound up with one of the collapsed soufflés. Bert laid it thick – “He felt your true feelings for him… the cake resisted you.”
• I am also happy that the closing comment of the season – a season filled with sniping, preening personalities, camera mugging, anti-social behavior, and other, well, diva behaviors – took the form of a classy comment from someone who had acted classless quite often. Morgan on Yigit – “I am proud with Yigit winning, there is no one I feel better losing to.”
Next week – Um…no Top Chef! Bravo is slipping, the missed a week of Top Chef programming. In two weeks, Top Chef: All-Stars. Sigh. Back to work!
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