Top Chef Recap: The Last Supper
In Happy’s previous Top Chef recap: Shirley won, Nick flipped his shit, and Brian was too highlighted for this world.
And we begin where we left off, in the stew room. Shirley tells Nick he is an asshole in the nicest most loving possible way. Nick’s got a Parkinson’s dad, so he is going home I think. We’re down to Nick, Carlos, Shirley and Nina. Carlos doesn’t to be here for the friends and to make them. Sigh. Would you have thought these four from the beginning? Shirley and Nina yes, but it really seemed like the kitchen was going to be a Paradise Island full of all the Amazons and Wonder Woman and Drusilla
and Queen Hippolyta, didn’t it?
Anyway. Here we are.
Oh fuck it, let’s get some Wondie in there too.
Quickfire: Gail wants a perfect bite on a teeny little dollsized cocktail fork. She wants sweet, salty, sour and spice. Gail is a monster. Why doesn’t she just ask them to make her something out of THE MOON?
What is “deckle”? Let us google it together. Oh, it is the fatty “second cut” of brisket. Okeydoke.
Shirley has been deepfrying and Nick comes over and — with a smile, mind you; it’s not like she is Carlos — demands to know whether she’s fucked with the fryer heat. She calls him a dick. He has only pussy next for the Team America philosophy of life.
Watching them load up (in closeup) these tiny cocktail forks is one of the things I really love about this show. Watching them fucking cook. And take tweezers with their shaking hands while they put tiny fried onions on their tiny fried steaks.
Shirley’s steak falls apart before Gayle can eat it. She rescues it from the table and puts it back on Gayle’s fork. Awkward, etc. What if it had fallen on the floor? I WOULD EAT IT ANYWAY. But Gail probably wouldn’t. Because she is a monster.
The girls are knocked out of the double quickfire; Carlos and Nick compete for a car. Eggplant or pepper, and they get to elbow each other for the produce. Nick beats the fuck out of him for the eggplant, he is probably very sad Carlos was so many hundreds of feet behind him that he did not even get to throw a check, hockey-style.
Nick does exactly what everyone keeps accusing him of: being too complicated. Now he’s doing eggplant two ways, because God knows they never just want a simple perfect mouthful of rusticness.
Nick is quite dismissive of Carlos’s red pepper soup. It is a cop-out of course, and definitely not served two ways with all the ingredients in the world.
Oh guess who wins! Did you guess “not Nick”?
Nick is sad at Carlos’s win and Carlos really is very passive-aggressive. Who me? Mr. Innocent? So we have Nick EMOTING all his anger and FEELINGS all over the place, but attempting very hard to be a Good Guy, while, really, failing at it. And we have Carlos, who likes to portray himself as an innocent victim, but really is fucking with people and manipulating whenever he can. Man, those guys both suck.
Create a dish inspired by New Orleans, say the judges. This is different from other challenges, because those were “dish New inspired create a by Orleans.”
The winning dish will go on all Emeril’s New Orleans menus. I have eaten at Emeril’s. It was the meal of my life so far. For fucking real. Five sticks of butter laid down their lives to give my crawfish a proper bed. I love you Emeril Lagasse.
Car commercial time. How fun. To look at the Bluetooth ports. Again. Because they haven’t done that yet. Tonight.
The chefs are spending the evening at the chef’s table — the one in the kitchen — at Emeril’s, oh my fucking god. You guys, chef’s tables are one of the VERY best things about being rich or having rich friends. Right at the fuckin top of the list. That and St. Maarten.
Shirley points out the problem with Nick’s overthinking: if one of 12 ingredients fails, the dish sucks. Of course, this has now happened, what, 30 times in a row? That is not stopping him.
Nina is making some bitchen cool tiny pasta with divots (malfatti) with rosemary and ricotta. Shirley is making like a river raft or something, Carlos takes the opportunity to tell the judges that if he wins, he is going to help so many people. They should really know that before eating his masa-less tamale, it is important to know.
Speaking of “transparent,” hi Nick. DID I MENTION CARLOS SUCKS AND IS NARROW AND JUST DOES MEXICAN FOOD LIKE IS THAT EVEN A CHEF WHEN YOU THINK ABOUT IT, says Nick, because he is a big ol snobby angerbear. BOO NICK.
Nina: Speckled Trout with Baby Vegetables and Barbecue Sauce.
Nick: Charred Cobia, Roasted Bass, and Tuna Confit, Crispy Rice and Shrimp Consomme.
Carlos: Steamed Seafood Tamal with Saffron Cream Sauce and Pickled Okra.
Shirley: Black Drum, Zhenjiang Vinegar Butter Sauce, Braised Celery, and Mushrooms.
Oh fuck Nina left off her teeny dumplings. SHE LEFT OFF HER TEENY DUMPLINGS DUDES. Oh right guess what they all love it anyway. It’s Nina, duh.
Once again Nick has the beautiful green and orange sauce. I can’t even see the rest of the dish because that sauce is just imprinting on my retinas forever, GORGEOUS.
Carlos’s seafood mousse tamal is bumming me out. It looks gloppy.
Tom, are you floating down the bayou? “I”m in an airboat” “eating some Chinese takeout.”
There are no criticisms of Shirley or Nina; where the boys are, it’s more soggy croutons dancing on the head of the pin. So good! Delicious, the best thing I’ve eaten from you, improved on centuries’ worth of cooking …. except for maybe this tiny thing?
Padma goes for a century-long pause of Concern before saying Nina and Shirley are tops, which nobody could ever have guessed or something.
YAY SHIRLEY! Scrappy underdog for win and finale!
Colicchio: but for a few grains of salt, Nick’s was as good as Shirley or Nina’s. Padma flips her head around 360 degrees. HE STILL DOESN’T USE SALT, she screeches. Nick’s mom sucks cocks in hell.
Carlos is an outsider here. As Nick emotes, Carlos leans back, his body away from the group. He hasn’t assimilated, may not have been invited to. Who will go to the finale? “I want you to be there,” says Nina to Nick. It is horribly cruel and honestly fucking rude. In her attempted kindness, she slashes the man sitting next to her. Carlos shoots a glance. Her eyes quickly find the floor.
Carlos is out. Bye Carlos. You were passive aggressive but you were also a bit of a castout.
At least they wait .5 seconds for him to be out the door before they shriek and dance and cavort and lift each other up in the air like this
They are all kind of bitches, I think. Over it.