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Top Chef Canada


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#1

RedhatRedmittens

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Posted Jan 10, 2011 @ 10:09 AM

Does anyone have any information on this show - contestant listings, show date - done by the Food Network in Canada?
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#2

oakgal

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Posted Jan 12, 2011 @ 3:08 PM

All I know is that it's meant to debut in the Spring. Mark McEwan is head judge, Thea Andrews is assuming Padma's role and I heard a rumour about Lynn Crawford. Hopefully not, she's terribly annoying.

I'm hopeful some info starts to leak out. We need something to go on. At least a list of chefs.
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#3

RedhatRedmittens

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Posted Jan 28, 2011 @ 2:40 PM

We have a start date - April 11th, 2011! According to Toronto Life we shall see a lot of GE Monogram appliances and they will be shopping at (groan) Loblaws.

Now we just need a contestant list...
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#4

oakgal

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Posted Jan 30, 2011 @ 9:28 PM

I'm okay with Loblaws. It's nice that they're keeping it Canadian and not reverting to Whole Cheques and their overpriced offerings and pitiful produce department.

I want to know the contestants!
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#5

T Scrumptious

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Posted Feb 28, 2011 @ 3:41 PM

Contestants released!
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#6

Fukui San

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Posted Feb 28, 2011 @ 3:47 PM

In that picture, Marc McEwen the judge looks like the lovechild of Hef and Hasslehoff.
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#7

oakgal

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Posted Feb 28, 2011 @ 11:53 PM

Ooh! Contestants. Finally. I reckon Dale Mackay of Lumiere will be a strong contender. I'm excited.

I think McEwen will be a tough but fair judge. At least that's how he comes across on his other Food shows.
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#8

RedhatRedmittens

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Posted Mar 1, 2011 @ 1:35 PM

The Food Network has also posted the audition tapes on Youtube.
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#9

T Scrumptious

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Posted Mar 1, 2011 @ 7:06 PM

I'm surprised I don't know more of the contestants or know someone who knows someone etc etc. The cooking industry is only so big, and I've worked with a shit ton of people!


Edit to add: Jeez...I couldn't watch any of these audition tapes (besides the one of the contestant I know) because they were just so...lacking. All of them! I hope this doesn't mean the season is going to be boring.

Edited by T Scrumptious, Mar 1, 2011 @ 7:20 PM.

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#10

RedhatRedmittens

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Posted Mar 2, 2011 @ 1:25 PM

I have to admit, I also wasn't that jazzed by any of the tapes I saw, some were even a little painful to watch - but I did see some decent knife skills!
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#11

frege

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Posted Mar 5, 2011 @ 12:58 PM

I know both of the Calgary cheftestants. Should note that Rebekah's Nectar Desserts closed a few months ago and is now an artisanal pizza place run by the Sugo folks next door. Connie's Charcut is monstrously popular (google "alley burgers" to see how cool this place is) and was one of enRoute's top new Canadian restos for 2010. I want one of these gals to win but have concerns about both of them because their specialties are pretty narrow. For Rebekah it's obviously desserts and baking; for Connie it's meat.

It's nice to see an OUT musclebear on TV in Patrick Wiese. And speaking as another gay US expat who emigrated to Canada for love (and from Chicago even) I wish him the best.
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#12

RedhatRedmittens

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Posted Mar 17, 2011 @ 2:02 PM

There is a nice little behind the scenes article posted...

http://www.thestar.c...rds-its-secrets

I loved how they (the producers) said that they did not want the show to look like a "poor cousin" of the U.S. version. Ha ha!
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#13

RedhatRedmittens

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Posted Mar 23, 2011 @ 10:17 AM

The Food Network has an actual dedicated webpage for the show now too! Gearing up for excitement!
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#14

arc

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Posted Apr 2, 2011 @ 5:42 PM

So am I missing it, or has FN Canada's show page still not put up the cheftestant bios? It's less than two weeks away... =P
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#15

T Scrumptious

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Posted Apr 2, 2011 @ 8:20 PM

They've been up for a while!



ETA: Seems they're difficult to find! I was just checking out the Food Network and couldn't find them. I knew I had seen them before though! I checked out my friend's FB and he linked his bio through there. Here's the link to all the bios! They should really put it on the main page!

Edited by T Scrumptious, Apr 2, 2011 @ 9:00 PM.

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#16

arc

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Posted Apr 2, 2011 @ 10:32 PM

They should really put it on the main page!

They have, as of some point this evening. I still think whoever's running the website for FNCa* is stealing money, though. For example, the mobile site suffers from this problem.

* "FNC" more commonly means "Fox News Channel", so I figure "FNCa".
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#17

arc

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Posted Apr 12, 2011 @ 12:20 AM

Premiere episode bump!

Wow, this had all the energy and fun (and product placement) of Top Chef US. I love how outspoken McEwan is, and he gave great feedback throughout the QF.

The QF was straight awesome: fillet a fish, peel artichokes, make a hollandaise, then make a dish with those components. Not sure how fair it was to give the chefs different fish, though. Some fish don't have pinbones to remove (right?), which would make filleting much faster.


I don't get how Clayton thought pork tenderloin was a good substitute for venison. I mean, it's a shame he couldn't get venison, but he should have completely rethought his plan instead of building basically the same recipe but on a substantially different meat.

Jamie lost major points with me for claiming Derek's salmon with skin on isn't edible. Crispy skin is one of the great parts of cooked salmon!

Patrick (edit: d'oh, I meant Michael. Patrick's dish was fine.) added a soft cheese to his broth to... yeah, I don't get it either.

Kudos to Rob for being the first EC winner of TCC ever!

Edited by arc, Apr 13, 2011 @ 11:08 PM.

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#18

oakgal

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Posted Apr 12, 2011 @ 1:30 AM

Jamie lost major points with me for claiming Derek's salmon with skin on isn't edible. Crispy skin is one of the great parts of cooked salmon!

That was so odd. I'm vegetarian and even I know salmon skin is not only edible but apparently delicious. Weird.

Loved the QF. I do love a skills test but I noticed the different fish as well. Suddenly they can't afford 16 of the same fish? Don't cheap out on me TCC!

That congealed broth of whatever-it-was looked very unpleasant. Nobody wants their food compared to vomit! Poor guy.

I enjoyed the little Canadian food touches like the seal flipper. That was a new one to me. I'd love to see Tom's face if he was presented with that on TC.

Next week: cheese! Yum.

Edited by oakgal, Apr 12, 2011 @ 1:31 AM.

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#19

T Scrumptious

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Posted Apr 12, 2011 @ 12:49 PM

Pretty enjoyable episode! There are clearly quite a few talented chefs, and quite a few who definitely weak.


Unimpressive:

Michael- Now this might be unfair, but as soon as I saw he was a "personal chef" I knew he would be weak. I don't need to say anything about his dish that hasn't been said. I felt bad for the guy though, he obviously has never been ripped into before! He deserved to go.

Jamie- Weak. Not only did he think salmon skin is inedible (huh? really?) but seared tuna and tartare? Are you still in culinary school? I mean really, how unoriginal! How totally boring. I hope he goes soon.

Chris- Lame dish. Totally showed his complete lack of skill and creativity. He's just not up to the caliber of many of the others. Not the worst, but in the bottom half for sure.

Clayton- he has skill, but his palate is really not as developed as many of the other chefs. He has potential, it's too bad he didn't wait to enter this competition

Rebekah- She does desserts. She might be capable of preparing savoury, but this is a disadvantage. I'm sure she's an awesome pastry chef (although her tart looked gross) but she can't compete. She doesn't have the same experience

Steve- What a douche! His ethnic food looked delicious, but it's not interesting at all. Bring something new to it!

Darryl- Not horrible, but not interesting. He's at the top of the bottom.

Neither unimpressive nor impressive:

Andrea- She's better than Rebekah, but not as good as Connie. She seems like she'll do well. Her plate was ok, but I was surprised to see her in the top

Dustin- Hate his face, but his dish was ok. He's at the bottom of the middle for me. Won't last too long.

Todd- Seal flipper was interesting.

Patrick- His dish looked kind of gross, but apparently the flavour was good.

Impressed:

Dale- obviously with his credentials, he's a front runner. His dish impressed me and I was surprised to not see him in the top 4. Top three in terms of talent.

Derek- His dish was interesting and simple. He's in the top, but at the bottom of the top (on my list anyway)

Rob- His dish was really impressive and he showed his skills at the quick fire. He's also a front runner and will do well. Top three.

Francois- Love the accent (although it's not totally Quebecois. Dude is from Lac St Jean. His accent is definitely affected by his time in France) I liked his plate and thought he showed skill in the QF. He's top three.

Connie- Best of the ladies! Her plate wasn't that impressive but she made her own sausage, so I thought that was pretty cool. She also is really skilled and the fact that she can debone a pig head in 4 min is impressive. She'll last the longest of the girls.
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#20

arc

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Posted Apr 12, 2011 @ 6:35 PM

but she made her own sausage

With her own sausage-maker! She said in her Q&A that she has a portable one she brought with her.

About the only thing they might need to do to run this show in the US would be to subtitle some of the harder to understand chefs with French-accents... in fact, after a few seasons of TC, I was a bit surprised TCC didn't do that already.

I wonder if the cooking was staggered or not. TC has almost always pretended it's not even when it is, but it's possible TCC didn't... I mean, it looks like the requirements were just a single serving plate and one beauty plate, so the judges had to pass plates along and I thought that was rather silly. Of course, asking the judges to eat 16 whole plates would also have been ridiculous, I guess.

ETA: Rebekah has a blog. A month ago, she wrote up how she got on TCC. It's pretty involved: she made the audition tape, applied, had a phone interview, and then an in-person application that involved cooking a couple of dishes in 30 minutes. (which was a duck hearts tartare and seared duck breast, so hopefully that bodes well for her non-dessert cooking.)

... if I feel up to it I'll try to do a complete roundup of cheftestant blogs that aren't hosted at FNCa later this week.

2nd edit: in case anyone who doesn't get this channel wants to watch, you should be able to watch it on http://www.foodnetwo...ideo/index.html ... yes, even from outside Canada. For now.

Edited by arc, Apr 13, 2011 @ 4:05 AM.

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#21

Rachel RSL

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Posted Apr 13, 2011 @ 9:31 AM

Maybe it's because I'm a bit of a germaphobe but what's the deal with the chefs making one plate for four judges? When the judges were leaning over the plates eating, then passing it along to the next judge, I was so completely grossed out, I could barely concentrate on the show. Do the judges really want to eat crumbs that have just fallen out of the mouth of the judge before them? That's so nasty! Plus, what about the plates where the chefs made something small, like a tiny dumpling. Do all 4 judges get to taste one itty bitty crumb each? So annoying!

I do enjoy the little Canadian touches. I don't know why but it highly amused me when they said they were going shopping at Loblaws.

Edited by Rachel RSL, Apr 13, 2011 @ 9:32 AM.

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#22

Sandstar

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Posted Apr 13, 2011 @ 1:37 PM

Maybe it's because I'm a bit of a germaphobe but what's the deal with the chefs making one plate for four judges? When the judges were leaning over the plates eating, then passing it along to the next judge, I was so completely grossed out, I could barely concentrate on the show. Do the judges really want to eat crumbs that have just fallen out of the mouth of the judge before them?


Perhaps they had tiny plates they spooned food onto?
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#23

travelerkaty

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Posted Apr 13, 2011 @ 4:51 PM

2nd edit: in case anyone who doesn't get this channel wants to watch, you should be able to watch it on http://www.foodnetwo...ideo/index.html ... yes, even from outside Canada. For now.


Sadly, this doesn't work for me here in the USA - I just get endless black screen. Let me know if anyone else finds a place on the interwebs that shows TC Canada!
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#24

arc

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Posted Apr 13, 2011 @ 6:38 PM

Sorry about that! I'd heard it worked from someone in the States, but maybe they hadn't verified it for sure then...
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#25

redfin4

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Posted Apr 13, 2011 @ 7:42 PM

Hi travelerkaty, I'm also in the US and got the black screen as well. Some kind soul on DailyMotion uploaded TC:Ca ep1 in 3 parts. Here's their page: TopChefx. Hopefully they'll upload the rest of the season. DailyMotion is also a good site to find the MasterChef UK and AUS versions, if you're into those shows too.

As for TC:Ca, still too many chefs to get a good handle on names-faces-style, but a few stood out for me:

Dale: my love for Daniel Boulud extends to him, kinda surprised he wasn't in the Top 4, hope he's not wound too tight.

Rob: winning the first EC is a good omen for him, looking forward to what he will plate.

Francois: I'm a sucker for the accent and the guy must have some serious skills if he can forget the sauce and still be Top 4.

Derek: I like his attitude. Also like that he's self-taught and made the Top 4 with his fish & pancakes. Never would've thought to put those together, but it looked tasty.

Steve: way too aggro for my tastes. I'm all for latino cooking, but he shouldn't have to beat his chest about it so much. I'm thinking he might be all sizzle and no steak.
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#26

travelerkaty

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Posted Apr 13, 2011 @ 8:51 PM

Thank you, Redfin4! Really, I think my world just might collapse on itself if I fail to see every iteration of Top Chef!
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#27

spiderweb

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Posted Apr 13, 2011 @ 10:50 PM

I don't know why but it highly amused me when they said they were going shopping at Loblaws.


Ha ha, me too! I was at Loblaws here in Montreal earlier today and had a little "omg, I was THERE" moment. That makes me a huge idiot, I know, but I am just so used to watching non-Canadian TV that to see something familiar is cool.

I liked this episode, and was happy it didn't seem to be a US-Top-Chef's-Little-Bro version. Although I'm Canadian, I only watch TV online and therefore really never see any homegrown TV and Top Chef Canada is looking hopeful for being added to my list of 'awesome obscure food reality TV' along with Australian Masterchef, which starts up again in a week-ish.

Right now I'm cheering for the Calgary chef with the pig's head deboning skills. She seems talented and I like her serious-seeming but not up her own ass (yet) attitude. And I felt super bad for the guy who got the boot, they were HARSH on him. It looks like he deserved it but still, I felt for him.
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#28

RedhatRedmittens

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Posted Apr 14, 2011 @ 8:54 AM

"Tarragon!" Too funny.
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#29

arc

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Posted Apr 14, 2011 @ 3:53 PM

The guy who went home was the right person to boot. That food looked disgusting and there is no way any last minute comination of cheese and broth is going to end well.

There's an exit interview in which he expressed disbelief, saying the components were all sound. He was really subdued - clearly losing was a big blow for him then, and I feel bad for him - but it's not really clear if he got why he lost.

(And I still don't understand his logic about how goat cheese was supposed to "calm the acidity of the [tomato] consomme." Maybe goat cheese + tomatoes in a solid form...)
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#30

T Scrumptious

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Posted Apr 14, 2011 @ 7:40 PM

There's an exit interview in which he expressed disbelief, saying the components were all sound. He was really subdued - clearly losing was a big blow for him then, and I feel bad for him - but it's not really clear if he got why he lost.

(And I still don't understand his logic about how goat cheese was supposed to "calm the acidity of the [tomato] consomme." Maybe goat cheese + tomatoes in a solid form...)



He was out of his league! Personal chefs cannot compete with resto chefs unless they have had many, many years of experience under amazing chefs before pursuing a personal chef career. You learn SO much while working in kitchens. SO much! Other people out of their league: Jamie. I think he left to open his own place too soon. Anyone that tries to wow with seared tuna and ho-hum tartare is just so, so mislead. I hope that the eliminations are fair and just and that the people who are clearly far more talented make it far. How awesome would a Rob, Dale, Francois top three be? (Connie is impressive too, but she's not as good. She can be fourth!)
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