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Chopped: Junior Varsity Iron Chef America?


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#3991

needschocolate

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Posted Mar 18, 2012 @ 11:47 AM

I was glad one of the big guys got chopped in the first round because for the life of me I couldn't keep them straight.

Yeah, two large bald guys with beards - too easy to confuse. We ended up calling one of them the "red-haired bald guy" (oxymoron, anyone?)
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#3992

BW Manilowe

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Posted Mar 19, 2012 @ 1:18 AM

auntie thesis said:

I hope Keegan makes it to pastry on the Showhards round. Aarti, Jeffrey, and Marcela are all ok...but meh, this better not be the opening round.


The Iron Chefs do battle in the 1st ep, Food Network/Cooking Channel hosts in the 2nd ep, per The Futon Critic. They also list the judges for each ep. The running order & the judges for each ep are as follows:

Part 1, "Iron Chefs Do Battle" Premieres Sunday, April 8th at 9pm ET/PT Competitors: Iron Chefs Cat Cora, Marc Forgione, Jose Garces and Michael Symon Judges: Scott Conant, Aarón Sanchez, Geoffrey Zakarian

Part 2, "Prime Time vs. Day Time" Premieres Sunday, April 15th at 9pm ET/PT Competitors: Show hosts Keegan Gerhard (Food Network Challenge), Jeffrey Saad (United Tastes of America, Cooking Channel), Aarti Sequeira (Aarti Party) and Marcela Valladolid (Mexican Made Easy) Judges: Amanda Freitag, Aarón Sanchez, Geoffrey Zakarian

Part 3, "Food Network Star Contestants" Premieres Sunday, April 22nd at 9pm ET/PT Competitors: Food Network Star Season Seven Finalists Justin Balmes, Penny Davidi, Vic "Vegas" Moea and Chris Nirschel Judges: Scott Conant, Amanda Freitag, Aarón Sanchez

Part 4, "Judge Remix" Premieres Sunday, April 29th at 9pm ET/PT Competitors: Chopped judges Alex Guarnaschelli, Marc Murphy, Marcus Samuelsson and Chris Santos Judges: Amanda Freitag, Aarón Sanchez, Geoffrey Zakarian

Part 5, "Grand Finale" Premieres Sunday, May 6th at 9pm ET/PT Competitors: Prior episode winners Judges: Anne Burrell, Amanda Freitag, Aarón Sanchez


Edited by BW Manilowe, Mar 19, 2012 @ 1:19 AM.

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#3993

Bleeding Love

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Posted Mar 19, 2012 @ 9:10 AM

That's interesting that Anne is judging the Finale episode - have they ever had a non-Chopped judge be a judge before?
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#3994

BW Manilowe

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Posted Mar 19, 2012 @ 11:56 AM

Bleeding Love said:

That's interesting that Anne is judging the Finale episode - have they ever had a non-Chopped judge be a judge before?

Well, they add new judges from time to time, so maybe they chose to add 1 for that ep as well; or, maybe there's someone from the Judges' ep in the finale & after that they could only come up with 2 of the "regular" judges for the ep because everyone else besides those 3 (2 judges/1 competitor) was unavailable for the ep taping date (shrugs). I mean, they're all restauranteurs/food authors/entrepreneurs besides being Chopped judges (they have other stuff going on professionally besides that, I mean). Maybe scheduling got futzed up with all the other usual judges so they couldn't participate in the ep, so they had to pull a "newbie" in. But Anne was on All-Stars last season, so at least she's familiar with the show. Not sure if that answers what you're asking though.

What I found interesting is that Geoffrey Zakarian is judging the Iron Chefs' competition. Especially seeing as he's now 1 of them & I'm reasonably sure this was taped after he was added to the "Iron Chef pantheon".

Now that I look at the judges' lists by ep again, I think it's also interesting that Aaron, Amanda & Geoffrey are judging the Chopped Judges ep this seaosn & (if I remember correctly) they all competed in it last season (I definitely remember Amanda being in it, 'cause I'm pretty sure she said something, when she was Chopped in it, about being a "better" [more understanding] judge in future eps because of her experience as a competitor). I wonder if that was "by design" on the part of FN/the producers, or if it's just because those 3 were the only 3 available on the scheduled taping date?

Edited by BW Manilowe, Mar 19, 2012 @ 12:15 PM.

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#3995

MsLawDawg

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Posted Mar 19, 2012 @ 12:32 PM

BW Manilowe, you are correct. Amanda, Aaron and Geoffrey competed last year, along with Maneet in the "Chopped" Judges round. Amanda also called herself: "one of those Pantry People", which was pretty funny. They were all good sports. The order of choppings was Maneet first, then Amanda; the final two were Geoffrey and Aaron, and Aaron won. I can't remember who the judges were, but I think it had to have been Conant, Alex and Santos. Aaron represented the judges in the final champions round, which Nate Appleman won (from the Next Iron Chef). He had the sob story to end all sob stories. The charity he was playing for was the Kawasaki (sp?) Foundation. His young son had the disease, which affects the heart. That was also the episode that soured me on Anne Burrell. After she gloated ad infinitum about beating Robert Irvine in the FN hosts round, she was, to me, a very bad sport when she got chopped second. She practically flounced off with little to say and she pouted when she said what little she did after her chopping.. This was for charity, and IMO, a little bit of humility or well-wishes for the other contestants remaining should have been voiced.

Maybe they promised Anne she could judge this final round, since she felt so upset last year.
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#3996

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Posted Mar 20, 2012 @ 10:07 PM

I just can't believe the judges got it so wrong tonight. Obviously, the true winner tonight was Paul's mustache. That thing is so deserving of making it to the Chopped Champion rounds, it would kick ass frontward and sideways.
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#3997

MsLawDawg

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Posted Mar 21, 2012 @ 7:42 AM

Hee. It did have a life of its own, didn't it? I must admit that I was captivated by close-ups of the 'stache.

When I saw fresh pasta sheets in the first round, I knew Conant would be one of the judges, and I hoped that he would be the kinder, gentler Conant, which he was. Alex was funny, as she did actually seem flustered by all the biceps in front of her.

Once the first guy was cut, which was sort of ironic since he was also the only one who worked as a chef professionally, I was happy with any of the three remaining guys winning, since they all did seem truly nice, outside of Chopped's producers milking the firefighter/hero angle for all it was worth. And I liked that Paul and his mustache won, after his years of service. All in all, a feel-good episode. It was kind of like the male version of the "Lunch Lady" episode.
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#3998

EllieH

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Posted Mar 21, 2012 @ 9:18 AM

All in all, a feel-good episode.


Agreed! And congrats to Paul for his win after all those years of service!

On a shallower note, I was happy Dan made it all the way to the dessert round, as he was smokin' hot. Bring him back for a another episode! Or as a new judge!
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#3999

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Posted Mar 21, 2012 @ 9:22 AM

Just as Paul was talking about what he was planning to do with the money if he won, he sort of broke up and I couldn't understand what he said that he planned to do with it. I thought it sounded like autism or something, but maybe I better invest in a hearing aid. Thanks for any info.
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#4000

kiki38

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Posted Mar 21, 2012 @ 9:24 AM

I kinda figured Paul for the win when he teared up at playing for the Autism kids.

Aside from hot dogs....these guys were given fairly easy baskets. Granted, not being pros, I appreciated the producers going a little easier on them. However, I did giggle as I thought of previous contestants watching the show and yelling at their TV's 'You get bison steaks and spinach and I got spam and instant grits?!?!?!?!'
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#4001

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Posted Mar 21, 2012 @ 10:25 AM

Obviously, the true winner tonight was Paul's mustache.


Hee. That's who I was rooting for! I love episodes like that. Although I did hate the alarm going off so often...

Season Seven Finalists Justin Balmes, Penny Davidi, Vic "Vegas" Moea and Chris Nirschel


Ugh. There's someone I never really wanted to see on TV again. I don't remember Chris. Was Justin the one who was a great chef but horrible on camera?
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#4002

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Posted Mar 21, 2012 @ 10:42 AM

Wasn't Chris the perennial frat boy? I'm looking forward to Penny's shenanigans!
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#4003

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Posted Mar 21, 2012 @ 10:59 AM

Ugh. They just had to bring back Penny. She's so gross. Chris was the frat boy, and Justin was the one with the dark fauxhawk who never had any presence on camera. I love Michael Symon, so I'm rooting for him from jump.

I loved the firefighter episode. It was sort of like the lunch lady episode, but with more muscles and facial hair. ;)
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#4004

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Posted Mar 21, 2012 @ 11:10 AM

Scott Conant teasing Alex about her "boyfriend" was kind of adorable. Help, I just used the word "adorable" regarding Scott Conant. How this guy has grown on me!

Paul had a really flat accent, talked quickly and mumbled and/or maybe his awesome mustache impeded his voice-- I really couldn't get what he was saying some of the time. But I was perfectly happy that he won-- as long as the "I'll break TVs in repeats when I see myself lose" guy didn't win, I was fine with any of them. But what was that face the one chef (the one that got cut in the entree round) kept being shown as making while he was cooking the buffalo? I couldn't stop laughing at that.
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#4005

MsLawDawg

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Posted Mar 21, 2012 @ 12:09 PM

Scott teasing Alex about chopping her new boyfriend first was really cute, iscoffy. He's obviously gotten some PR pointers. I like the adorable Scott, but in regular episodes, I'd like some of his old rants to be featured more. Oh well, there are always re-runs.

Paul was donating his winnings to "Autism Speaks", as he said his cousin had an autistic child, davout1806. I think that's what he said, anyway. Because his winnings were going to charity, the judges presented him with a chef's jacket. I think he's the only regular participant that announced he was donating his winnings to a charity that actually won the $10k.
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#4006

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Posted Mar 21, 2012 @ 12:38 PM

It was kind of like the male version of the "Lunch Lady" episode.

MsLawDawg, I was thinking the same thing.

I think it's pretty smart of the Chopped folks to throw in these one-off episodes; you kind of root for everybody and it's typically a lot kinder and gentler (even among the participants, "Winner buys the first round..." etc.)
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#4007

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Posted Mar 21, 2012 @ 5:30 PM

That was a nice change. I hope they come up with more themed episodes like this one and lunch ladies. But I don't know, throwing them softballs with the basket ingredients did seem a little insulting. The entree stuff was a piece of cake. HA!

Maybe next they'll do hospital chefs.
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#4008

dreamy

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Posted Mar 21, 2012 @ 10:23 PM

Have they ever done a 'teen' or junior version of Chopped? If the kids aren't too precocious, it could be interesting.

(I see to remember one of the Food Network Challenges, when it was a good show, doing a special about some kind of food competition for serious young chefs. It was really good - the kids were so committed to becoming good chefs, without any attitude.)
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#4009

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Posted Mar 21, 2012 @ 11:37 PM

Wasn't Chris the perennial frat boy? I'm looking forward to Penny's shenanigans!

Speaking of Chris. He must have the reality show bug. I saw a commercial for the new show Couples Therapy and he's on it. The show looks like a train wreck.

I was happy to see Chef Cleft Chin chopped first. I love when that happens to alpha males who are too picky to get married.

Did Walter ever mention if he wanted to win? I can't remember him mentioning it <sarcasm> I still liked him though. Funny guy and seemed like a really good cook.

Didn't Alex say that it was the first group of chefs that didn't have any professional experience? Chef Cleft Chin works as a sous chef somewhere.
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#4010

whee whee piggy

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Posted Mar 22, 2012 @ 2:16 AM

Alex got to be in the sexy sandwich this time AND get flirted on by a hunky fireman!

This may be my favorite judges performances ever, with the 'brothers' teasing sis Alex, although the chefs and cheffing left me cold. Knew the old dude was going to win because he was the only one with any sort of story.

Oh gods, and Scott touched Alex...Damn woman, how could you think?
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#4011

MsLawDawg

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Posted Mar 23, 2012 @ 8:20 AM

I was happy to see Chef Cleft Chin chopped first. I love when that happens to alpha males who are too picky to get married.


This is absolutely terrible for me to say, but I got the distinct impression that he became a firefighter to pick up women and strut around with his FDNY shirt just a little too tight. He may just be the best firefighter at the station and joined for totally altruistic purposes, but that's not how he came across to me. The other guys were very humble and wanted to do well in the competition, but Chef Cleft Chin (love that!) was more concerned about being embarrassed, smashing his TVs, etc. He looked like he had spent a lot of time grooming, although not nearly as long as it took for Paul's mustache to get ready.
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#4012

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Posted Mar 23, 2012 @ 10:43 AM

I so agree. It's one thing to say "I want to get married but haven't met the right person," but an entirely different to say "I'm too picky." That suggests that *everyone* wants to marry him.

I finally saw the episode that first aired on 3/13. First time I saw an episode where I've eaten in the restaurants of two of the chefs -- the two finalists: Spice Kitchen and Fatty Crab. This was fun for me, although probably of no interest at all to anyone else.

Which brings us to the ongoing discussion of the propriety of including contestants who work for a Chopped judge. The guy who won, Fatty Crab, works for Zac Palaccio, the newish, shaggy judge who seems not to have found favor on these boards. The other finalist works for Jean-Georges Vongerichten. I'm sure that Chopped is way too low-rent for J-G.
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#4013

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Posted Mar 24, 2012 @ 8:41 PM

On a shallower note, I was happy Dan made it all the way to the dessert round, as he was smokin' hot. Bring him back for a another episode! Or as a new judge!


I just caught up on some episodes, and thoroughly enjoyed the firemen. Such a fun one to watch! And though I was spoiled (from reading here) about the ending, I was still rooting for Dan, because he was a cutie, and seemed so very nice. Those eyes! That smile! [insert lame putting out my fire joke here]
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#4014

ramble

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Posted Mar 24, 2012 @ 9:28 PM

and Scott touched Alex...Damn woman, how could you think?


This! I'm with y'all, the man has grown on me. I even find his grouchy awesome. And I watch for those smiles. I loved the more relaxed interplay among the judges & the teasing of Alex. It was enjoyable to watch as much as 3 of the firefighters. I kept telling myself that Cleft Chin was playing to the part but the whole "too picky" in regard to marriage made that hard to sell to myself.

I'm super geekily excited about the upcoming All Stars! Except for Penny, I was done with her from the first time she was on my TV.
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#4015

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Posted Mar 26, 2012 @ 8:49 PM

I don't mind the newer, kinder Scott Conant. I think he's more constructive and insightful in his judging. He genuinely praises when he loves something and when he does offer criticism in something unsuccessful he tries to explain to them why it ended up that way (ie Walter's unevenly cooked bison). Aaron gets old with his not-enough-heat routine.

Did love how all the chefs were scared shitless at the fresh pasta sheets and having Scott as a judge.
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#4016

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Posted Mar 28, 2012 @ 12:57 AM

They aired my favorite episode today (Chopped Redemption) where contestant Lance Nitahara wins and gives his $10K prize to Yoanne Magris so she can buy a ticket to see her grandmother in France. I cried the first time the episode aired and did again today. Love it!
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#4017

CPP83

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Posted Mar 28, 2012 @ 2:19 AM

Lance Nitahara wins and gives his $10K prize to Yoanne Magris so she can buy a ticket to see her grandmother in France


Actually, he offered to buy her the ticket with the money, but he didn't give her the whole 10k. It was still a highly thoughtful and incredibly generous gift, but if he had given her all the money I bet his wife might have had something to say about it, they do have a daughter as well.
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#4018

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Posted Mar 28, 2012 @ 10:11 AM

That particular Redemption episode featuring Chefs Yoanne, Lance and Siggy is ever so much sweeter since the thoroughly obnoxious Chris is also featured and gets chopped first. When he starts blathering on during the appetizer presentation about how wonderfully well he is doing that day since his restaurant just got 3 stars in the Boston Globe, which meant he had six stars total between his TWO restaurants, you can tell the judging panel wants to tell him to shove it, which they do, using better words. You can also tell the other chefs, who were very likeable and humble to me, just don't quite know what to make of this babbling twit.
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#4019

PrincessLuceval

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Posted Mar 28, 2012 @ 1:08 PM

I can't wait to see that Redemption, MsLawDawg. I saw the one with Tryg the other day. While he wasn't quite as obnoxious as he was in the original episode, he was still very annoying. The others were all quite nice. I thought it was kind of funny that Sammy (eventual winner) was very sad that Michelle lost to Tryg, and he (Sammy) would have to face off with Tryg.
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#4020

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Posted Mar 28, 2012 @ 4:27 PM

They also played the Redemption episode when Amy Roth beat Chris Burke. I swear I thought I hated Tryg Syverson but Chris was the absolute WORST (I never saw his original episode). He's cocky, he looks weird, he puts down the other chefs in front of them. He was completely disrespect to Amy by telling Katie Rosenhause that he wanted her in the final. I was so happy when he lost to Amy. I give Marc, Scott and Aaron, the Trifecta of Yummy, mad props for not flying out of their chairs and beating him to a pulp. Scott's reactions to whenever Chris spoke and when Amy was telling him off were PRICELESS!

Loved seeing the Lance/Yoanne episode, so sweet in all the right ways. Also glad Siggy was able to get all her items on the plate as well.
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