Top Chef All-Stars Season 8, Episode 7 Recap: Restaurant Wars, Restaurant Bores.
"My arm tats rock."
Ugh. It's "Restaurant Wars," yo, the most overhyped episode of the Top Chef season. It's all about seeing which team can come up with the worst-ever name for a restaurant, argue over which font to use for the menus, and see who can yell the most at their servers.
Shhh...don't speak...the cheftestants are sleeping. Which is what we'll be doing 10 minutes into the show. Hey, maybe we're Top Chef All-Stars, too? Bravo makes some lame attempt at a recap of all the chefs that have fallen victim to Anonia, (a.k.a. The Black Hammer). Not interesting. No one cares. Eyes getting heavy.
The Quickfire takes place at Eric Ripert's award-winning restaurant, Le Bernardin, and well, well, well . . . it's Bourdain. Hey Tony, nice of you to show up. Those contractual obligations are a bitch, huh?
After Anthony Bourdain shamelessly plugs his new book for an eternity, we meet Justo Thomas, the badass fish butcher at Le Bernardin who shows off his stuff for the cheftestants by completing two fish in eight minutes. The cheftestants will have 10 minutes to butcher two fish. Marcel explains that the first time he butchered a fish, he had an allergic reaction, which he ignored and it just went away. Will the powers of Teen Wolf never cease?
Spoiler alerts ahead, yo!
Slice, slice, slice. Cut, cut, cut. Carla's failing miserably and Fabio cuts his thumb, remarking that he ain't no baby, like "Two-Stitch" Jamie, as the blood drains into his fluke. Yum. Tiffany, a seafood chef back home, slices her fish the wrong way. Yipes.
Dale, Richard, Mike, and Marcel come out on top. Congratulations, you've all earned a free ticket to phase II of the Quickfire That Will Never End: take 45 minutes to make a dish using the remaining fish heads, bones, and leftover nasty bits (yeah, we know this is you, Bourdain) and win immunity in Restaurant Wars. Dale says his parents were doing nose-to-tail cooking before it was cool -- take that, food hipsters! Red Richard says when he worked at McDonald's he used to leave the top buns off the fish sandwiches -- take that, corporate clown!
The winner is Dale for his (take that!) two dishes of bacon dashi with salt-roasted cod collar and fluke back fin sashimi with cucumber and fluke liver sauce. Dale not only gets immunity, he gets to be a captain for one of the Restaurant Wars teams and gets to choose the other team captain as well. He picks Teen Wolf Marcel. Shocker. He hates Marcel and knows Marcel's chances of leading a team down a friggin' hallway are sketchy at best. Please set we-all-know-how-this-is-going-to-end levels to high and proceed to sleep mode.
Elimination Challenge: Back at the Top Chef kitchen, Padma and celebrity judge Ludo "Pop-Up Restaurant" Lefebvre announce that it's time for Restaurant Wars, which might be exciting if we hadn't heard it a zillion times before and didn't already know how it was going to end. The difference this year: the diners will decide the winner. Yeah, okay, whatever. We're too sleepy to care.
Dale and Teen Wolf Marcel pick teams:
Team Dale: Dale, Blais, Tre, Fabio, and Carla
Team Teen Wolf Marcel: Marcel, Angelo, Mike, Antonia, and Tiffany
The expected Marcel meltdown starts immediately with Marcel whining, being passive- aggressive, and complaining that no one is listening to him. Note to Marcel: What? Marcel's team eventually comes up with "Etch" for their Mediterranean-inspired food (awful) and Dale's team comes up with "Bodega" for their bodega stoner food (original). Thankfully, there's no hurried shopping excursion sponsored by (store name here), and we move right on to the challenge.
Lots of hatin' on the Etch team, especially with Marcel. Tiffany is noticeably uncomfortable with her front-of-the-house duties, and food is getting sent back from the diners at Dana Cowin's table. Oh, Dana Cowin's here. That's nice. Why isn't she sitting with the judges or . . . zzzzzzzzz.
In happy land, team Bodega is running like a well-oiled machine. No one's fighting, Fabio is a front-of-the-house rock star, and Dana Cowin says there's fun all over their menu. Red Richard is worried it isn't good enough. Note to Red Richard: Just look at Marcel's team -- you think you're gonna lose to another crappy foam creation? And why . . . zzzzzzzzzzzzz.
Judge's Table: No surprises here, team Etch goes down in flames with only 17 of 76 diners voting for them. Ouch. Everyone fights and blames Marcel for his terrible, yet expected, poor leadership.
Team Bodega gets even more sunshine blown up their collective asses with very little criticism and Red Richard taking the win and $10,000.
At the very non-surprising end, Marcel is told to go home. Please pack your knives and facial-hair grooming products so that we can go back to sleep.
Next Week: Mafia night!
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