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Top Chef Canada


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#451

Canada

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Posted Mar 23, 2012 @ 7:57 PM

I don't know.... I think Mike Holmes was the most sensible judge there.
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#452

travelerkaty

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Posted Mar 25, 2012 @ 11:35 AM

They actually ridiculed Joel for choosing Pacific Sockeye for a BBQ. Here on the West Coast, salmon's one of the top 2 or 3 choices for BBQ, if not the #1 choice.


I was wondering about that - I live in Seattle, and I would say at least 75% of the barbecues I participate in have salmon, maybe more.

I'm having a hard time figuring out who these people are. Despite the general annoyance of reality show assholes and conflict, at least those things delineate the characters. So far I can't remember hardly anyone, and part of it is that they're all so bland so far. I don't dislike anyone, but that may be a function of hte fact that I can't remember a single person's name.
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#453

T Scrumptious

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Posted Mar 26, 2012 @ 5:29 AM

I was wondering about that - I live in Seattle, and I would say at least 75% of the barbecues I participate in have salmon, maybe more.


I dunno, I thought they meant it was a weird to BBQ salmon given the crowd, and I agree. I was sad Kunal went home. I quite liked him and thought he was more skilled and had more interesting ideas than a few of the others (but that always happens, right?)

I'm also pleasantly surprised by the females this season. They seem to be pretty strong, except for Sarah...but I like her b/c I'm also a short female cook and I get where she's coming from!
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#454

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Posted Mar 27, 2012 @ 12:03 PM

Curtis irritated me when he dumped stuff on the floor and ignored it. Any of the others could have slipped in that and been hurt. His partner had to clean it up. So I was not happy to see Curtis win. It was like he was rewarded for that behaviour.

Crying might work in front of Trump. But it didn't work on this show. Sarah went home. She really was out of her element and seemed lost at times.
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#455

Rachel RSL

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Posted Mar 27, 2012 @ 2:48 PM

Hi Thea! I didn't miss you at all! But you look great!

What was the point of making them work in teams if they were just going to be judged individually? That made no sense to me whatsoever. Why not just have them draw knives to see if they were cooking a girl dish or a boy dish?

Looks like the big difference between U.S. and Canadian reality shows is that some people on the U.S. versions get cast for their personalities instead of abilities. That clearly isn't the case here. They all seem pleasant enough but it doesn't look like we're getting a villain to root against or a hero to root for this season. I was amused at that one guy's crack about Connie breaking the sausage machine last season but I couldn't tell you which one said it because he's blended in to the big pile of blandness.
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#456

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Posted Mar 28, 2012 @ 6:19 AM

Has any Top Chef series have not only one, but TWO Cheftestants make inedible dishes in the same challenge? Ugh...

I wonder if they would have pulled them in by teams but decided that those 4 dishes were so bad they had to pull them in individually. In the end one team was without the doubt the worst of the worst, so the other two were just brought in for a hand slap more or less.
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#457

Sooeygun

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Posted Mar 28, 2012 @ 10:07 AM

Curtis irritated me when he dumped stuff on the floor and ignored it. Any of the others could have slipped in that and been hurt. His partner had to clean it up. So I was not happy to see Curtis win. It was like he was rewarded for that behaviour.

Curtis (thanks for the reminder of his name; I can never remember it) has been posting over on Chowhound on the Food and Media board. I asked him (someone had to!) about that this morning. Hope he answers.

I enjoyed Thea more as a guest judge than as host.
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#458

Founding Father

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Posted Mar 29, 2012 @ 4:33 AM

"My mouth is traumatized!" - Ha!

"It's like biting through a blather." Ha ha!! (He must be an expert of biting blathers.)

The judges are bring the snarks, they are trying as hard as the judges on Kors and Garcia on Project Runway.

I think the guy had been practicing making macaron over and over until it's perfect before coming to the show. It's not something a normal savory chef would know how to make. Good for him for getting prepared.

Edited by Founding Father, Mar 29, 2012 @ 10:27 AM.

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#459

Not Lenny

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Posted Mar 29, 2012 @ 5:52 AM

Having hormonal, temperamental pregnant women judge food - what could go wrong? As always, continuing the Top Chef tradition of cognitive dissonance between challenge and judging:

"Pregnant women like really weird combinations of crazy food!"

... Later in this episode...

"Why the hell would you make these weird combinations of crazy food???"

Edited by Not Lenny, Mar 29, 2012 @ 5:55 AM.

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#460

BurgersPop

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Posted Mar 29, 2012 @ 1:50 PM

"It's like biting through a blather." Ha ha!! (He must be an expert of biting blathers.)


I think he said "It's like biting through a BLADDER." which is why the pregnant ladies were asking him never to mention bladder at the table again.
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#461

Founding Father

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Posted Mar 29, 2012 @ 3:41 PM

Oops I was thinking bladder but misspelled it. Colpa mea.
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#462

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Posted Apr 3, 2012 @ 4:31 AM

What a revolting episode. I wouldn't eat any of that stuff. There's a reason it gets thrown away! I am glad that Gabriel is still there, as he's my favourite!!

Oh, and Lisa... please god never do curly hair like that again.
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#463

LakeGal

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Posted Apr 3, 2012 @ 8:39 AM

I was just starting to like Sergio and he leaves. Too bad. I would have rather lost a few others instead.

Liz is getting the selfish edit. In fact the way they edited this week I pretty much guessed who was going to win and go home.

Alan Thicke next week.

Edited by LakeGal, Apr 3, 2012 @ 8:40 AM.

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#464

Rachel RSL

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Posted Apr 3, 2012 @ 1:55 PM

Clearly I'm a horrible person because when Chris and Mark were going on about how we waste so many parts of the animal, as if we should be ashamed, all I could think was: "Yeah, because those parts of the animal taste like ass. They should be thrown out." I mean, do we really need to feel bad about not eating offal? If I'm spending money to go out to eat, I'm getting a chicken breast or a steak, I'm not paying money to eat a cow's asshole. (Or something that tastes like one.)

Oh, and Lisa... please god never do curly hair like that again.

That hairstyle was tragic.

Yay! Alan Thicke next week! I don't know why but I have a soft spot for him. Must be some residual love left over from Growing Pains. (Not to mention the fact that he publicly condemned Kirk Cameron for his vile comments last month.)
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#465

oakgal

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Posted Apr 3, 2012 @ 3:19 PM

I understand what they were saying about wastefulness in the meat industry. It is wasteful and it is a peculiar trait of North America, almost solely. Look, I'm a vegetarian--I don't eat any animal but I do agree with using more of the product--be it meat or vegetable. I hate wastefulness. If you haven't tried offal, how do you know it tastes bad? I imagine you'd be surprised, these things are eaten all over the world--they can't be disgusting. They're just not mainstream, doesn't mean they're bad.

I was disappointed so many of the chefs were unfamiliar with offal. That is pretty pathetic. This tip to tail movement has been around for a while, they should know better. They need to travel more, get out of Canada.
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#466

Rachel RSL

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Posted Apr 3, 2012 @ 4:40 PM

No, I've never tasted it but I know it tastes awful because almost every person I've ever seen on every cooking show has said that it tastes bad. If professional chefs say it's gross, I'll believe them. And just because something is eaten in other parts of the world doesn't mean it's not disgusting. I believe some parts of the world eat bugs and cats and, sorry, I find that disgusting. Anyway, I prefaced that comment by saying I was a horrible person.
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#467

oakgal

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Posted Apr 4, 2012 @ 6:32 PM

I don't think you're horrible. But I just don't think all these things taste bad. I was watching it with my Mum (who's Australian) and she mentioned that she ate brains and kidneys when she was a kid. She said they were really good. And the cooking shows I've watched have featured these things and I've never heard them described as gross. That Canadian guy who likened it to a certain body part sounded incredibly ignorant about anything outside of "normal" food. For a show like Top Chef, I thought the Canadian chefs came off really badly, by and large. Not knowing about offal and then complaining about it.
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#468

egbert

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Posted Apr 5, 2012 @ 6:45 PM

Lisa, when you look like Elizabeth Taylor, don't curl your hair like Pam Grier.
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#469

Not Lenny

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Posted Apr 6, 2012 @ 6:30 PM

What a revolting episode. I wouldn't eat any of that stuff. There's a reason it gets thrown away!


Many of those items are delicacies. It would be crazy to throw away sweetbreads, brains, or livers. The organ meats are often much more delicious than the muscle meat we usually eat, and they can fetch premium prices. Tripe and intestines, not so much, but intestines are used to make sausage casing and tripe is a regional specialty in England.

I thought it odd that the judges were saying that liver ice-cream was such a weird idea. Pâté is made from livers, and it already has an almost ice-cream-like consistency. It's not much of a stretch to come up with pâté ice-cream.
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#470

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Posted Apr 7, 2012 @ 1:37 AM

I was just starting to like Sergio and he leaves. Too bad. I would have rather lost a few others instead.


I don't think he deserved to go so soon, but I also don't think he's really THAT good. There's this billboard right outside his restaurant (which is on St-Laurent, a main street...the main street)with a picture of him with a bowl of his "famous" gnocchi poutine. He should have done that with the tongue instead of stupid looking fries. And while a "real" poutine is made with powdered gravy, he should have made one. Probably should have braised the tongue and used that as the sauce!

No, I've never tasted it but I know it tastes awful because almost every person I've ever seen on every cooking show has said that it tastes bad. If professional chefs say it's gross, I'll believe them. And just because something is eaten in other parts of the world doesn't mean it's not disgusting. I believe some parts of the world eat bugs and cats and, sorry, I find that disgusting. Anyway, I prefaced that comment by saying I was a horrible person.


I understand what they were saying about wastefulness in the meat industry. It is wasteful and it is a peculiar trait of North America, almost solely. Look, I'm a vegetarian--I don't eat any animal but I do agree with using more of the product--be it meat or vegetable. I hate wastefulness. If you haven't tried offal, how do you know it tastes bad? I imagine you'd be surprised, these things are eaten all over the world--they can't be disgusting. They're just not mainstream, doesn't mean they're bad.


Offal gets a bad rep because if you don't prepare it properly, it IS disgusting. A lot of people have had horrible experiences with badly cooked offal, and they assume it's all awful. Professional cooks think it's gross because it's gross to prepare. When it's raw and not cleaned! Thinking about cleaning a whole liver makes me feel so sick!
I agree that we should be eating nose to tail. It just makes sense. That said, there are some offal I really dislike. I do try everything once, except brains. I can't bring myself to eat brains. I do think it's important not to waste, but it is difficult to cook offal well.

I do agree that the chefs should have been more familiar with offal. I think that more restaurants should do nose to tail and cook offal properly. If people would try it, I'm sure they'd like at least some offal, or some offal prepared a certain way. It will be hard to convince most people to try it though!

I thought it odd that the judges were saying that liver ice-cream was such a weird idea. Pâté is made from livers, and it already has an almost ice-cream-like consistency. It's not much of a stretch to come up with pâté ice-cream.


At first I was like, oh...but I very quickly though, well that's a lot like pate, so not so weird. The "technique" he used was really just a machine called a Paco Jet. Basically, you freeze your mix into pucks that will fit in this cylindrical thing. Then to make ice cream, you put the cylindrical thing (with the puck of mix in it) and turn it on and whhhhrrrrrr!!! A blade comes down and finely shaves the whole thing into creamy ice cream. It's fun, but sort of a bitch to use in a restaurant kitchen (ice cream spins in small quantities and is VERY soft when you spin it. It's annoying for plating desserts in a hot kitchen!) Anyway! I wasn't all that impressed with him. Literally anyone could make an ice cream with a good texture in the Paco Jet! It's almost cheating! hahaha!

I was really unimpressed with the chef who got the intestines. It seemed like he had no idea how to make sausage and there was zero creativity on that plate. It was amateur and poorly executed. He should have gone home. I can't even remember his name!

Edited by T Scrumptious, Apr 7, 2012 @ 1:39 AM.

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#471

fountainof

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Posted Apr 7, 2012 @ 3:40 PM

I was really unimpressed with the chef who got the intestines. It seemed like he had no idea how to make sausage and there was zero creativity on that plate. It was amateur and poorly executed. He should have gone home. I can't even remember his name!

And is was really sad that he said something like " I got intestines and didn't know what to do with then and realized they resemble sausage casings". This guy is a chef and had to realize that? I am not a chef and only and average cook and at least with the intestines I would have know how to use it.
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#472

Sea

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Posted Apr 7, 2012 @ 4:35 PM

I'm disappointed no one quoted Lisa Simpson, "They don't expect us to swallow that tripe!"
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#473

Not Lenny

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Posted Apr 8, 2012 @ 3:12 AM

"They don't expect us to swallow that tripe!"


Now as a special treat courtesy of our friends at the Meat Council, please help yourself to this tripe.
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#474

MGaboriau

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Posted Apr 9, 2012 @ 11:12 AM

To my palate, poutine in its original form is an abominable dish and I am sorry it's what many people think is representative of our national cooking.

That being said, there are variations on the basic formula that Sergio could have taken as an inspiration in order to aim above the greasy-spoon level; didn't he realize he was in a culinary competition? I have tasted versions with duck confit or foie gras, with the fries replaced by spätzle, with a real sauce made with a good starting stock, different kinds of cheese, etc. Instead, he went for the lowest common denominator, despite the fact he himself does a higher-version in his restaurant from what has been reported above, as if he just gave up and was deliberately trying to get eliminated.

No matter how bad his dish appeared to be however, the thing that left the worst taste in my mouth was the comment from the pregnant judge, who said "an Italian boy from Québec" with a dismissive tone which shows that prejudice can come from all corners.

A show dedicated to offal was an inspired choice, a real challenge considering how rarely some of those choices are used in North-American restaurants and cooking in general, outside of sweetbreads, liver or perhaps tongue. Without any real experience in cooking with most of those products, the chefs really had to show their mettle (and they gave me a few ideas to try at home in the process).
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#475

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Posted Apr 9, 2012 @ 4:23 PM

To my palate, poutine in its original form is an abominable dish and I am sorry it's what many people think is representative of our national cooking.

,
It is distinctly Quebecois, not Canadian...just saying. Also, while I agree that it can be made into much more refined dish, if you replace the fries with spatzle, it is NOT poutine. It`s noodles with cheese and sauce! Poutine should be fries, but it can pass as poutine as long as it has potato somewhere, in my opinion.

He should have AT LEAST made his gravy.
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#476

MGaboriau

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Posted Apr 9, 2012 @ 6:27 PM

It is distinctly Quebecois, not Canadian...just saying.

Since the word "nation" does not necessarily refer to a country, I stand by my phrasing. Besides, I have seen it advertised elsewhere in Canada, like in Vancouver and in the Maritimes; I am sure it is also to be found in the Prairies. Plus, it has become so visible outside of Canada that it is probably in the running as the best-known Canadian dish outside of our country.

Sauce made from scratch would indeed be a minimum in such competitions. The poaching or braising liquid from the tongue would have been a good base if time allowed; I still can't believe he simply slapped together such mundane ingredients, including cheese curds of unspecified (to us) freshness.

The spätzle version I ate had duck confit in it; I don't feel strongly enough about poutine orthodoxy to insist that there be potato in it. As long as there is a starch component, it qualifies.

Of course, I know people who say that Italian poutine, i.e. with meat and tomato sauce, is an offense against the original perfection of that "delicacy".
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#477

egbert

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Posted Apr 10, 2012 @ 10:28 PM

Why are your guest judges Colby Armstrong and Alan Thicke? Seriously, that's the best you can do to represent Canada? Who's next? Mike Weir and Lloyd Robertson? Tiger Williams and Don Cherry? (Actually that would be awesome!)

What the hell is going on with this show? Just get real chefs to guest judge and leave all these non-celebrities back with their crappy hockey team and 80's sitcom.

I'm really liking Lisa Ray though. She's well spoken, feisty, and game for anything.

Edited by egbert, Apr 10, 2012 @ 10:29 PM.

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#478

oakgal

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Posted Apr 11, 2012 @ 3:10 AM

I like Lisa Ray too. But the rest of the show--meh. I complained about this last season too, but I still cannot get past the cheapness of the show. It's become an ongoing joke between my Mum and me. I'm just waiting for the Elimination Challenge where the winner gets a gift card to Canadian Tire. I bet it's on the horizon. (Or else I just gave them a terrible idea for next year.)

Was it last week that the winner got cookware? I thought that was unbelievably cheap. $2500 in cookware. Give them money! They need to do better. I don't expect $30,000 High Stakes Quickfires like on the US show but they could pony up $10,000 occasionally.

I also hate these non-Chef judges/guests. I want food people.

I'm not even sure I'm rooting for anyone yet. I need this show to pick up. I'm getting bored.
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#479

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Posted Apr 11, 2012 @ 6:24 AM

Well Restaurant Wars is next week, with a real celebrity chef guest judge, so hopefully things will pick up. Of course the preview edit monkeys want us to believe something horrible is going to happen too.

I did like the idea behind the Decade challenge, and most of the chefs did bring out some interesting things. I feel bad for the chef that forgot his bread and then had to set up next to Liz; Liz got the Bitch edit big time last night.

I did like Alan Thicke as a judge. He had his spot light time long ago, and now he seems to be content to retire in relative obscurity, while willing to come out occasionally to have fun. Most of the times I have seen him guest star on a show (mainly Canada's Worst Handyman and now TCC), he seems to have a lot of fun with it. And I also don't mind having non-chef guest judges. Food is meant to be eaten and enjoyed; so if a Chef's dish can't connect to a non-foody, then it has a problem.

Some more high stakes quick fires (or any HSQF's) would be nice. 10-15 grand would probably be on par with the US Show's After Tax prize pool too.

Otherwise, the talent pool does feel a lot shallower this time around. There also doesn't seem to be as much variety this year. I hope next time they try to avoid getting all/most of their chefs from Toronto. Part of me also would love to see Loblaws sponser again, so we could see them shopping in the Maple Leaf Gardens Loblaws.

But more than anything, I'd love to see a more national approach to the show. Do a "Top Chef: Trans Canada Edition" and have them start in Vancouver and do 2-3 challenges per city as they travel across the country, maybe by train as much as possible, finishing up in Halifax or Saint John's. Frankly, it's sad that the mother-show has had more Canadiana in it across 2 series, than TCC has. :(
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#480

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Posted Apr 11, 2012 @ 11:24 AM

I'm just waiting for the Elimination Challenge where the winner gets a gift card to Canadian Tire.

*chokes* That would totally make my day! "You win $25 at Canadian Tire and a leftover Ryan Malcolm cd."

I feel a kinship with Curtis because of the whole "knowing the Leafs will never win but being cursed to root for them anyway" thing. Yep. That pretty much sums it up. And shut up Colby Armstrong! "I probably just scored a goal." No, you probably didn't. *bitter Leaf fan*

So excited for Susur next week! Love him! Finally a *real* chef as a guest judge.
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