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Top Chef: Seattle – Episode 6 – You Had Me At Lamb-Stuffed Squid

We are in Chiluily restaurant – which is gorgeous, full of art and pretty blown glass tubes. Pratt’s mom went to touch it and almost brought the whole thing down. Faris’ parents show, and her Uncle Steve. No word if he is a Drunk Uncle. Also there…Rick Moonen. HA! You couldn’t have scripted it better. Monkey just laughs and laments that having a former boss judge you is probably a bad thing.

The Latex Salesman– Loin of Elk with Cherry Beer Sauce and Mushroom Couscous – Padma said it was beautifully done. Pratt likes the mushroomy flavor. Moonen said it needed a touch of salt. Pratt things that if it is not the frontrunner, then this will be the best effing food in the world. Guess what? It was not the frontrunner.

Brooke – Lamb-Stuffed Squid on Black Rice with Coconut Milk – Pratt’s reaction… “whoa.” It’s got every flavor. Tom felt it was ballsy. Moonen said she could have laid back and coasted with immunity. Tom said it was perfect time to go for it. Few ever do – they find it more a time to relax. However, with nothing to lose, you can take risks. If you go big, sometimes you can win big.

Papa Smurf – Braised Okinawan Pork Belly with Seared Scallop and Rice Congee – Faris loved the sweetness of the belly and savory rice. Every bite was a surprise

Thumb – German Gulasch with Marjoram Bread Dumplings and Sour Cream – Padma thinks Thumb really got what pregnancy cravings really are all about. Pratt jokes that gulasch sure isn’t like goulash.

Kish – Delice De Bourgogne Tortelloni– Pratt’s friends love it. Gail was dubious of the apricots, but it worked. Moonen called it the perfect bite.

Micah – Braised Pork Ribs with Celery Root Puree, Grilled Apples and Celery Leaf Salad – Tom said there was too much cream. Moonen said the components don’t add up.

Lizzie – Crusted King Salmon with Radish and Beet Salad – Gail said it was not seared enough, and lacked caramelization. Faris wanted more seasoning.

Eliza – Elk Ribeye with Elk Sausage Polenta, Spiced Carrots and Huckleberry Port Sauce – Tom felt the meat was not bad, but the rest is bland. He doesn’t get the carrots and wonders what happened. Gail thinks it needed a hit of acid. Pratt jokes that he too did a hit of acid before the meal.

Hipster – Pan-Roasted Wild Boar, Hoppin’ John and Tomato-Bacon Marmalade – She is super nervous and it shows. Pratt says that whenever they see it on the menu, he always orders wild boar. He adds jokingly menacing, “I hope you don’t disappoint.” Pratt likes the jam. Tom said it was so thin, he can’t chew it. Gail said it was cooked unevenly and was bland.

OTV – Roasted Pork Shoulder and Grilled corn Puree with Succotash and Fennel Apple Salad – Gail thinks it was insane. Tom said it was not seasoned. Pratt said it was not great but infinitely better than rodent. High praise indeed.

Josie – Malbec Braised Short Ribs, Pork Belly, Polenta with Cippolini Onions and Figs – Moonen said it sounded great but had no contrast.

Monkey – Seafood Chowder with Cockles, Manila Clams, Crab, Mussels, and Sockeye Salmon Monkey intros the dish by saying, “a wise old man taught basic of chowder and he is standing right before us. Heh. Faris said it was everything she craves of Seattle. Wow. Moonen said it was a hug from the ocean. Double wow. Padma said the salmon skin was divine.

Winners – Monkey, Kish, Brooke and Papa Smurf. Brooke said she was holding back, and Tom said that if this is her way, no one will ever yell at her. Moonen gives Monkey the approval on the respectful chowder. Gail praised Kish’s apricots and Kish said she liked how the cheese and fruit played off. Padma tells Papa Smurf this tells so much about him, every part of his soul was in there. So…Horcrux Stew. Moonen said it was a melting pot of ingredients. The winner…Brooke. She reacts with a “shut up!” She has a new car and back to back wins.

Losers – Eliza, Hipster, OTV and Micah. Tom assures them that no one was really bad, but these were the lowest rated. Micah’s was out of balance and grainy. Padma questions OTV’s pork reputation and Tom his choice of seasoning. Tom gives Eliza problems for her unevenly cooked elk and dried out carrots. Tom tells Hipster she made a good relish, but uneven boar. Gail questions why she is so nervous. She admits to it, and says she feels like it her first day. Tom advises her to cook her food, and don’t get psyched out by the others. Good advice.

In the end, Eliza gets the knife and goes out with class. She has a cold, so no kisses for the judges. It may explain her poor performance too.

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