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S1 - Hubert Keller


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#1

aceplace57

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Posted Jun 9, 2009 @ 5:22 PM

Hubert Keller is my personal favorite in Top Chef Masters. I never forgotten my meal at Fleur de Lys in San Francisco over ten years ago. By far, the best food I've ever experienced.

He's one of the strongest classically trained chefs and he's got experience as a pastry chef. Maybe that will help carry him through the competition.

Here is short interview with Hubert discussing the Top Chef Masters experience. Mild spoilerage about the challenges, but he doesn't give away who won. His story about never shopping at grocery stores was hilarious. It's hard for me to imagine that type of lifestyle.

http://www.stltoday....8C?OpenDocument

Edited by aceplace57, Jun 9, 2009 @ 6:34 PM.


#2

biakbiak

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Posted Jun 9, 2009 @ 6:44 PM

And he is so nice! When I first moved to SF, right out of college, my roommate had a job at an event planning place and through a snafu we got to dine at Fleur de Lys for free with some of her equally entry level employees. The meal was absolutely amazing (and so where the one's I have had when I went back) but what was just as amazing was the service, our waiter was fantastic and we got on quite well. Anyway we were joking about how great the meal was and how we should demand to meet the chef because my roommates boss was a pompous blowhard who always insisted on doing that. Our waiter overheard us and said we could totally meet the chef. We explained we were just mocking an pompous windbag and wouldn't dream of making such a fuss because we were no one important!

At the end of the meal they brought us some amazing extras that weren't on the prepaid menu and said they were compliments of the chef and that Chef Keller wanted to meet us. So off we went to the small kitchen and he was so sweet and nice and showed us around and asked are really (in retrospect) stupid questions and said he always liked to talk to anyone who loved food and that it was an honor to meet us!

So I am definitely a fan.

Edited by biakbiak, Jun 9, 2009 @ 6:46 PM.


#3

Selianth

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Posted Jun 10, 2009 @ 10:34 AM

That sounds so sweet, biakbiak. I love his rationale from that article posted above for doing the show: he's been a judge on Top Chef before, and thought that it wouldn't be fair not to, and that it is important for a judge to know what the other side is like. I'm not really familiar with many of the contestants but from what I've read so far, I think this guy is going to be the one I'm rooting for at least at the start.

#4

LizDC

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Posted Jun 10, 2009 @ 10:34 PM

Hubert's Exit Interview (Bravo Video)

Edited by LizDC, Jun 10, 2009 @ 10:35 PM.


#5

YumPorchetta

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Posted Jun 11, 2009 @ 11:58 AM

Hubert is just such a genuinely nice, kind man. We met him more than 10 years ago during his cookbook signing in San Francisco, and he was so kind and polite, and spent a lot of time chatting with us. He told us to let him know the next time we were having dinner at Fleur de Lys, which we did (a year later), and he treated us as if we were were long-lost friends. The meals at his restaurant have always been fantastic, imaginative, and truly delicious. We've dined at Fleur de Lys every year when we travel to San Francisco, and although we aren't rich, or famous, Hubert and everyone at Fleur de Lys treat us as if we are very special. You can be sure we will be rooting for and cheering on Hubert to win it all.

#6

TudorQueen

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Posted Jun 11, 2009 @ 12:05 PM

So glad to hear that he is indeed as lovely a man as I've imagined just from seeing him as a TC Guest Judge. I was thrilled to see him in the very first round, and rooted for him vociferously.

I thought his solution to the pasta dilemma was both clever and funny, and enjoyed the fun he had with it, and how cute his competitors and the 'critics' were about it.

He seems very gracious and warm whenever I see him or hear about him, and I definitely would have eaten everything he made during that episode. If I am ever in San Francisco and have a little money I would eat at Fleur de Lys in a heartbeat.

#7

raisinthesun

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Posted Jun 11, 2009 @ 2:10 PM

I am really glad Hubert made it to the next round. All his dishes looked delicious and I can't wait to see him in the final rounds.

#8

lighthouser41

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Posted Jun 11, 2009 @ 9:24 PM

Has anyone eaten at his Burger Bar in St Louis? I saw it advertised when I was last in St Louis and really want to make a day trip to eat there. He also owns Sleek there at the Lumiere Place casino.

#9

Rai

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Posted Jun 11, 2009 @ 9:33 PM

I have adored him since Season 1 of Top Chef, and I'm so glad he aced the first round. I am very amazed by the level of talent this show has brought together and would totally be rooting for Wylie Dufrense normally, but Hubert Keller is in my heart. Hubert for the win!

#10

aceplace57

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Posted Jun 11, 2009 @ 11:54 PM

I noticed Hubert took the time (during the desert qf) to swap mixers with another chef that was having trouble. That's a very classy thing to do. Hubert is such a nice, soft spoken guy. I'm glad he's advanced to the next level.

#11

jeplao

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Posted Jun 11, 2009 @ 11:56 PM

I love Hubert! I'm definitely rooting for him. That mac & cheese looked amazing...I wish they would have listed the herbs that he used during the show. Does anyone know if they are planning on putting the recipes online?

Has anyone eaten at his Burger Bar in St Louis? I saw it advertised when I was last in St Louis and really want to make a day trip to eat there. He also owns Sleek there at the Lumiere Place casino.


I've eaten at the Burger Bar in Vegas, and if the one in St. Louis is half as good you'll love it. We ate there during the week we got married, and the managers felt so bad about the length of time we had to wait that they brought us a few desserts for our party free of charge. It was awesome!

#12

Snark Shark

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Posted Jun 13, 2009 @ 3:06 AM

He renews my faith that, in fact, more French people are actually nice, as compared to the a-holes we all assume they are (although plenty of those exist).

#13

greybear

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Posted Jun 14, 2009 @ 1:21 PM

Does anyone know if they are planning on putting the recipes online?

Recipes or demos for the winning chef's dishes are supposed to be made available on BravoTV.com.

#14

diesushi

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Posted Jun 14, 2009 @ 7:28 PM

Count me in on the Hubert love. I loved his happiness at winning the Girl Scouts judging.

Love all the Hubert stories. He seems like the real deal.

#15

LetsGoPens

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Posted Jun 15, 2009 @ 6:34 PM

I was telling my mother the other day ... It almost seems unfair to have Hubert on since he's just THAT GOOD and I feel like no one can match up.

Well, I WOULD think it was unfair if I didn't love him so much. He's just amazing. He's always been one of my favorite judges.

Also, I was really glad to watch him do a dessert, because (I think it was him at least) of the last finale where he said that a true chef shouldn't just skip doing a dessert course. To be a real chef, they should be able to do that, too. I couldn't agree more.

#16

csichick

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Posted Jun 18, 2009 @ 3:00 PM

Yesterday I was watching Hubert Keller on his PBS show, and he made lobster macaroni and cheese - I think he said it was something he serves in his restaurants. It looked absolutely fabulous. What an amazing depth of knowledge he brings to this.

Here's his Bravo winning mac and cheese.

Keller Shrimp Mac and Cheese

#17

greybear

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Posted Jun 18, 2009 @ 8:13 PM

Oy! My heart stopped pumping and my arteries hardened when I read that Keller mac and cheese recipe! Pasta alfredo used to be called 'heart attack on a plate,' but I think we have a new winner now.

#18

aceplace57

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Posted Aug 5, 2009 @ 9:18 AM

Tonight's second champion's round competition will be a big test for Hubert. Can he put away the butter, cream, and other rich ingredients he loves? Creating a low fat, vegan dish will be a challenge for any French chef. I'm looking forward to seeing what Hubert comes up with.

I was very impressed with his choice in the first champion's round. Hubert choose an unfamiliar flavor profile because it interested him. He wanted to experiment with it. Hubert could have played it safe and picked an easier dish. But, that's not what a real Master Chef does.

Edited by aceplace57, Aug 5, 2009 @ 9:21 AM.


#19

Fukui San

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Posted Aug 5, 2009 @ 9:38 AM

Someone mentioned that Fleur de Lys had a longstanding vegetarian tasting menu, so I did a google search and found an article about this from 1998. This was introduced in the 1980's. Sounds like he'll have some ideas on how to attack the problem.

#20

andreahb

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Posted Aug 7, 2009 @ 8:25 AM

I've just re-watched one of the Harry Potter movies and it just struck me how Dumbledore-like Hubert is! Not only in his looks, but also in his sweet, unassuming demeanor (like Dumbledore in the books, not so much in the movies, to be honest). I can see him as the headmaster of a French magic cooking school!

He and Eric Ripert totally break the French asshole stereotype. Two of my favourite Top Chef regulars: happy dances ensue whenever one of them shows up as a guest judge.

#21

IseutLaBrune

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Posted Aug 7, 2009 @ 1:12 PM

Awesome post, andreahb. Good call on Hubert Keller being a culinary Dumbledore! Love that!

I have such a crush on this man. He seems like someone who I would love to hang around with, not just because he cooks amazing food, but because he also seems genuinely sweet and fun.

Chefs are often seen as arrogant, and French people are seen as arrogant on top of that. Agreed that Keller and Ripert both do a wonderful job of breaking those stereotypes.

Also I love that the cream in Keller's mac & cheese recipe is measured not in cup measurements, but as half a quart. Dayum. Delicious, delicious fatty goodness.

Edited by IseutLaBrune, Aug 7, 2009 @ 1:14 PM.


#22

biakbiak

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Posted Aug 7, 2009 @ 1:13 PM

This show reminded me that I haven't been to Fleur De Lys in awhile so we will be going on Tuesday. Perhaps there will be a Hubert sighting!

Edited by biakbiak, Aug 7, 2009 @ 1:13 PM.


#23

aceplace57

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Posted Aug 7, 2009 @ 11:25 PM

Hubert has been doing great so far. I am a little worried about his scores in the champions round. He's in the middle of the pack. I'm concerned because the judging isn't all professional. The diners score plays a big role. I think they are more impressed by Rick and Michael's bold flavors. Mexican and Italian flavors grab peoples attention.

Hubert is playing it smart. He's cooking his style of food and doing it almost perfectly. I hope that's enough to get him into the finale. Then, I think the style of dishes will play a big factor. All the chef's dishes will probably be flawless. The dish with the most distinctive flavors will win TC Masters. I'm hoping the diners in the finale will be other chefs and people in the food industry. That will make it more fair to all the Master Chefs. A good palate is needed to pick a TC Master.

#24

biakbiak

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Posted Aug 10, 2009 @ 5:12 PM

Chef Keller rocks the house.

#25

TudorQueen

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Posted Aug 13, 2009 @ 4:49 PM

Although I have grown steadily to admire and love Rick Bayless in the course of this competition, it is Hubert Keller who truly has my heart. He's shown himself to be vulnerable - it's not in the bag by any means - but I am still rooting for a Keller win at the end! He's got it all, and boy, do I want it!

#26

BabyVegas

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Posted Aug 13, 2009 @ 11:57 PM

To add to the list of things that make me sad: I'm flying to San Francisco later this year and I even convinced my mom to take me to Fleur De Lys...only to discover that we're actually going to be in Palo Alto, not SF. We're only flying into SF. Booooooooo.

Edited by BabyVegas, Aug 13, 2009 @ 11:58 PM.


#27

Imrastro

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Posted Aug 14, 2009 @ 3:40 PM

Palo Alto is just down the road a bit. Seriously. I go to Fleur once a year for Christmas. It is not to be missed. Especially not just because you have a drive 45 minutes! You can take BART. Whatever it takes, come!!!

#28

biakbiak

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Posted Aug 14, 2009 @ 5:40 PM

Well you can't take BART because it doesn't go down that far but you could take CalTrains.

We went on Tuesday because my friend had never been and it was sensational as always. Plus, a Hubert sighting and his wife Chantal was also charming.

#29

judypkoi

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Posted Aug 15, 2009 @ 2:23 PM

Chefs are often seen as arrogant, and French people are seen as arrogant on top of that. Agreed that Keller and Ripert both do a wonderful job of breaking those stereotypes.


Agree that Keller and Ripert are both a delight to see on the show. I've only been to Paris once, but every single French Person I needed to interact with was very nice. However, I did start every conversation with my pitiful HS French and then asked "Parlez-vous anglais?" The reply would always be "A little", then most would switch to fantastic English. (Other nations are vastly more competent in 2nd, 3rd, 4th languages then Americans) The only rude French speakers I met were in Belgium.

#30

ayako38

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Posted Aug 16, 2009 @ 7:28 PM

I went back and re-watched the very first episode "Who Deserves To Be Here" of Top Chef. Ya know Hubert has got to be happy that they didn't bring back Ken as a sous chef last week. <G>