Wednesday, November 18, 2009

'Top Chef' Night: Separated at birth?

I'm finding it hard to watch "Top Chef" this season. I get distracted by the frantic Twittering by my fellow food writers (follow the Twitter tag #topchef and you'll see what I mean -- Joe Yonan of the Washington Post and Jeff Houck of the Tampa Tribune almost came undone over Nigella last week.)

But I also get distracted wondering why Michael Voltaggio looks so familiar. Hmmm. Backwards ball cap, big ears, wideset eyes? Wait! I've got it: He's a ringer for Dwier Brown of "Field of Dreams"! C'mon, Mike - ask your bro Bryan if he wants to have a catch. With sharp knives.

Meanwhile, what has happened 'Top Chef' Jen? She's lost both her cooking chops and her personality. She's started out calm and cool, but now she's RoboChef. Wake up, Jen! No one who works for Eric Ripert ought to get that scattered.

Finally, I'm pulling for the best chef on the show so far: Kevin Gillespie of Atlanta. (No, not Eli. Please, not Eli. He's an Atlantan in name only. Robin might have been annoying, but calling her "grandma" was just so uncool.)

If Kevin wins, it won't only be a victory for manners and cuddleness, it will be vengeance for last year, when Atlanta's Richard Blais was robbed. Do it for the Big Peach, Kevin.


PalmettoGirl said...

I'm a relentless Kevin fan, and not only for the way he cooks, but also because he seems capable of being humble and appreciative of other chefs' efforts. I also LOVE the way he brings common, overlooked ingredients (celery, radishes) into focus in his dishes. Yeah, he likes his meat a bit rare, but I'll just know to request it "medium" when I get to his restaurant! (Still, I'd love to see Jen pull herself together and get to the finals. Her subtleties and imagination are inspiring!)

carolinalivin said...

Out of all the chefs that are there.. I think Eli should go. I think he is the weakest. However, I think Jennifer's attitude (and what I call the monkey mope) could doom her in more ways than just the tv show and could hurt her professionally. I hope the brothers don't destroy each other and I hope that even if Kevin does make a mistake and land in the bottom.. the judges will realize he's won almost everything and keep him around. Ultimately I'd love to see a four person finale with the Volts, Kevin and Jennifer but I don't think it will happen. Ultimately, I like Kevin (I know Bryan has a killer restaurant going in Frederick) and both brothers are talented, but Kevin has stayed true to himself, followed the K.I.S.S. rule and stayed out of the drama so far. The only thing that worries me is when they pair the chefs with the stupid cast offs during the finale and things get screwed up. I'm curious which celeb chef you think each finalist (could or should) be paired with? Also, Michael Volt looks nothing like the guy from Field of Dreams and his eyes are too close together and smaller than is his brother Bryans.

luv2cknbk said...

Kevin is probably going to win and I'm hoping for Jen (come on pull out of your funk, you're an Eric Ripert disciple, for Pete's sake)and one of the Voltaggio bros (hopefully Bryan cause he's got the better personality but it's going to be Michael)in the finals. Can't wait for tonight's show with Thomas Keller!!!

Julie said...

I'm a huge Kevin fan too _ and I think the finals will be really interesting with Robo-Voltaggio and his brother, Bryan, Jen and Kevin. I totally agree that Eli calling Robin "grandma" was uncool _ I felt a little bit sorry for him when he was all choked up, though.

Kathleen Purvis said...

Thanks, Julie. It was sweet that Eli only outlasted Robin by one episode, wasn't it? My new favorite to shake my head at is the BroVo (I think it was Bryan), who said Kevin's food is "what I cook on my day off." And then Kevin won the 30 grand and the chance at Bocuse D'Or. This season's official dish seems to be a heaping bowl o' crow.