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Offline apskip

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Top Chef Masters
« on: February 13, 2009, 10:36:24 AM »
Top Chef Masters will feature new judges, host

Bravo’s previously announced all-star Top Chef spin-off Top Chef Masters will feature a different cast from the regular series, with new judges and a new host. Tom Colicchio serves as a consulting producer for the series, but the judges will be Gael Green, who Bravo says is a “renowned restaurant critic”; James Oseland, a “culinary expert”; and Jay Rayner, a food critic. Kelly Choi will host; she’s previously hosted a few New York-area food-related TV shows.

Bravo’s announcement says the new series “will feature 24 world-renowned chefs competing against each other in a series of weekly challenges, as only one chef will make it to the finals to compete for the title of ‘Top Chef Master’ and a prize for the charity of their choice.” It will feature quickfire and elimination challenges.

RealityBlurred.com article
TC Masters


Offline TexasLady

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Re: Top Chef Masters
« Reply #1 on: February 14, 2009, 08:31:21 AM »
Wow! I'm looking forward to this!! Thanks Apskip for posting the news!  :hearts:
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Offline TexasLady

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Re: Top Chef Masters
« Reply #2 on: February 23, 2009, 05:48:12 PM »
An interesting article

Top Chef Masters News!
Bravo announces the host and judges for its new series, Top Chef Masters.

The Dish

Attention, Top Chef fans! Need more Top Chef in your life? Um, who doesn't. Well, you're in luck because Top Chef Masters is a-coming.


Each episode will hold two challenges for the chefs. The first is a twist on the classic Quickfire Challenge which tests their basic abilities and the second is a more involved Elimination Challenge designed to test the versatility and invention of the chefs as they take on unique culinary trials such as working with unusual and exotic foods or catering for a range of demanding clients. The food will be tasted and evaluated by the judges and a wide range of tasters for whom the challenge is aimed, whether it is patrons at a five-star restaurant or a room full of hungry kids — the food has to appeal to the diner as well as the critics if the chef is to survive.

And who are these judges?

Food journalist Kelly Choi will serve as the series' host, and renowned restaurant critic Gael Greene, culinary expert James Oseland, and food critic Jay Rayner will serve as judges. The show will feature 24 world-renowned chefs competing against each other in a series of weekly challenges, as only one chef will make it to the finals to compete for the title of "Top Chef Master" and a prize for the charity of their choice.

I'm so excited I could spit (That's an expression, right?)

- Monica A. Reyhani

Source: http://www.bravotv.com/blogs/the-dish/top-chef-masters-news
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Offline marigold

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Re: Top Chef Masters
« Reply #3 on: April 07, 2009, 11:13:16 AM »
BRAVO DISHES PREMIERE OF "TOP CHEF MASTERS" WEDNESDAY, JUNE 10 AT 10 PM

Released by Bravo

24 World-Renowned Competing Chefs Revealed Along With Guest Stars Neil Patrick Harris, Zooey Deschanel, Morgan Spurlock, And For The First Time Together All "Top Chef" Winners

NEW YORK – April 7, 2009 – Calling all foodies…it's time to salivate! "Top Chef Masters," the spin-off series of the Emmy and James Beard Award-winning No. 1 food show on cable, "Top Chef," will premiere on Wednesday, June 10 at 10 p.m. ET/PT. The judges' table has finally turned – and we'll see what happens when these top chefs are now on the other side. "Top Chef Masters" will pit 24 world-renowned chefs against each other and see how well they fare in the tried and true format of "Top Chef." In each episode, money will be at stake for the chefs, with the winners of eliminations being awarded cash donations for their charities. The first six episodes will consist of four chefs competing against each other to name one winner. The six winners of each episode will then meet up for the final four weeks when one person will get eliminated each episode until the finale where one winner is crowned Top Chef Master. The winning chef will receive $100,000 for the charity of their choice.

"Top Chef Masters" will feature guest stars and judges Neil Patrick Harris, Zooey Deschanel, "Lost" writers and executive producers Carlton Cuse and Damon Lindelof, "Flipping Out's" Jeff Lewis, and for the first time, all past "Top Chef" winners will be together during an episode. The series will also showcase chef'testant fan favorites as well as appearances by "Top Chef's" Tom Colicchio, Padma Lakshmi and Gail Simmons.

"On 'Top Chef,' the biggest names in the industry join us as guests to pass judgment on the chef'testants," said Dan Cutforth, Executive Producer, Magical Elves. "Now we'll get to see how they handle equally tough challenges."

"We are thrilled to have such an amazing line up of celebrated chefs putting their reputations on the line for their charities," said Jane Lipsitz, Executive Producer, Magical Elves. "'Top Chef Masters' will take the kitchen competition to the next level."

To meet the cast of "Top Chef Masters," visit www.BravoTV.com.

Following are the 24 "Top Chef Masters" competing chefs:

- Rick Bayless – Frontera Grill, Chicago, Ill.
- Wilo Benet – Pikayo, San Juan, Puerto Rico
- John Besh – Restaurant August, New Orleans, LA
- Graham Elliot Bowles – Graham Elliot Restaurant, Chicago, Ill.
- Michael Chiarello – Bottega Restaurant, Yountville, Calif.
- Michael Cimarusti – Providence, Los Angeles, Calif.
- Wylie Dufresne – wd~50, New York, N.Y.
- Elizabeth Falkner – Orson, San Francisco, Calif.
- Hubert Keller – Fleur de Lys, San Francisco, Calif.
- Christopher Lee – Aureole, New York, N.Y.
- Ludo Lefebvre – Ludo Bites, Los Angeles, Calif.
- Anita Lo – Annisa, New York, N.Y.
- Tim Love – The Lonesome Dove Western Bistro, Fort Worth, Texas
- Rick Moonen – Rick Moonen's RM Seafood at Mandalay Bay, Las Vegas, Nev.
- Nils Noren – French Culinary Institute, New York, N.Y.
- Lachlan McKinnon Patterson – Frasca Food & Wine, Boulder, Colo.
- Cindy Pawlcyn – Mustards Grill, Napa Valley, Calif.
- Mark Peel – Campanile, Los Angeles, Calif.
- Douglas Rodriguez – Alma de Cuba, Philadelphia, PA
- Michael Schlow – Radius Restaurant, Boston, Mass.
- Art Smith – Table Fifty-Two, Chicago, Ill.
- Suzanne Tracht – Jar, Los Angeles, Calif.
- Jonathan Waxman – Barbuto, New York, N.Y.
- Roy Yamaguchi – Roy's Restaurants, San Diego, Calif.

Kelly Choi, food journalist and creator, producer and host of NYC TV's weekly restaurant show "Eat Out NY," will host this highly competitive spin-off uniting some of the brightest stars in the world of food, showcasing the often cutthroat world of the culinary arts. A former model, Choi recently finished her book called "The 20 Most Delicious Dishes in New York," which is set to hit stores in spring of 2009.

Joining the judges' panel is Gael Greene, New York Magazine's famed restaurant critic for over 40 years, a best-selling author and co-founder of Citymeals-on-Wheels, which provides food to the homebound elderly. James Oseland, culinary expert and Editor-in-Chief of Saveur magazine, and British journalist, writer and broadcaster Jay Rayner, will also serve as regular judges for the series.

Each episode of "Top Chef Masters" holds two challenges for the chefs. The first is a twist on the classic "Top Chef" quickfire challenge which tests their basic abilities – for example in season 2 of "Top Chef" where the chef'testants had to create an amuse bouche out of items from a vending machine. Each quickfire challenge will be judged by a blind taste test and a five-star system, similar to fine dining reviews.

The second challenge is a more involved elimination challenge designed to test the versatility and invention of the chefs as they take on unique culinary trials such as working with unusual and exotic foods or catering for demanding clients. The food will be tasted and evaluated by the judges and a wide range of tasters for whom the challenge is aimed, whether it is patrons at a five-star restaurant or a room full of hungry kids – the food has to appeal to the diner as well as the critics if the chef is to survive.

This season, www.BravoTV.com will host a "Top Chef Masters" B-Hive sponsored by Stacy's® Pita Chips where viewers can host weekly viewing parties for their fellow food-obsessed friends, including provided party kits, game ideas, and more! Fans can also visit the site weekly to find out how to make each winning dish through video demonstrations. Visitors will be able to watch interviews of the eliminated chefs and the winning chefs of each challenge. The tables turn with "Rate the Plate," where the user can determine which dishes were the best each week. Also, fans can play "Memory Match" and test their foodie and chef knowledge with our challenging — and addictive — IQ quizzes. Television Without Pity (www.televisionwithoutpity.com) will recap each episode in their signature snarky tone.

Offline marigold

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Re: Top Chef Masters
« Reply #4 on: April 07, 2009, 11:17:32 AM »

TOP CHEF MASTERS





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Re: Top Chef Masters
« Reply #5 on: June 07, 2009, 07:11:55 AM »
Top Chef Masters begins Wednesday night on BRAVO at 10pm. Competing for their selected charity causes are:

Art Smith
Position: Owner of TABLE fifty-two in Chicago, as well as Art and Soul restaurant in Washington DC.
Education: Self-taught
Foodie Fact: Smith is Oprah Winfrey's long time personal chef. In 2007 he received the 'Humanitarian of the Year' award from the James Beard Foundation.
Competing for: Common Threads

Jonathan Waxman
Position: Chef and Owner of James, Washington Part, and Barbuto in New York City
Education: La Varenne cooking school in Paris
Foodie Fact: Waxman has graced such prestigious kitchens as Chez Panisse in Berkeley and Michael’s in Los Angeles, and his first cookbook, A Great American Cook, was published in 2007
Competing for: Meals On Wheels

Michael Cimarusti
Position: Chef and owner of Providence Restaurant in Los Angeles
Education: Culinary Institute of America
Foodie Fact: After a three-year run at Le Cirque where he worked with Paul Bocuse, Gerard Boyer, and Roger Vergé, Cimarusti moved to France to expand his culinary education at La Marée and Arpege.
Competing for: Grameen Foundation

Roy Yamaguchi
Position: Owner and chef of Roy's in Honolulu
Education: Culinary Institute of America
Foodie Fact: Yamaguchi Hawaiian restaurateur to win the prestigious James Beard Award. Yamaguchi has appeared on Iron Chef, is the author of four cookbooks, and hosted the cooking show Hawaii Cooks.
Competing for: Imua Family Services

Anita Lo
Position: Chef and owner of the successful New York restaurant Annisa and serves as consulting chef for Rickshaw Dumpling Bar
Education: Ecole Ritz-Escoffier
Foodie Fact: While earning a degree in French at Columbia University, she studied at Reid Hall – Columbia's French language institute in Paris and decided to return to Paris to study cooking.
Competing for: SHARE

Douglas Rodriquez
Position: Chef and Founder of Patria Restaurant
Education: Johnson and Wales University in Providence, Rhode Island
Foodie Fact: Rodriguez is well known for being the "Godfather" of Latin Cuisine and coining the phrase “Nuevo Latino” in his first book in 1997. He was nominated for a 2009 James Beard Award for the "Best Chef South Region."
Competing for: AYUDA for the Arts

John Besh
Position: Chef and co-owner of the Besh Restaurant Group in New Orleans, including August, Lüke, and Besh Steak
Education: Culinary Institute of America
Foodie Fact: Besh was on Food & Wine's “Ten Best New Chefs” in America in 1999, “Best Chef in the Southeast” by the James Beard Foundation in 2006, and was featured on the Sundance Iconoclasts series in 2007.
Competing for: Make It Right

Mark Peel
Position: Co-owner of La Brea Bakery and Campanile,owner of Smoke and Mirrors (due to open in Hollywood 2009)
Education: Self-taught
Foodie Fact: Peel was Wolfgang Puck’s chef de cuisine at the original Spago in LA. He has co-authored several books, including Mark Peel & Nancy Silverton At Home: Two Chefs Cook for Family and Friends and The Food of Campanile.
Competing for: Doctors Without Borders

Chris Lee
Position: Executive chef at Aureole in New York
Education: California Culinary Academy
Foodie Fact: At Philadelphia’s The Striped Bass, Lee acted as chef de cuisine under Alfred Portale and later became executive chef. Upon his return to New York City, Lee spent two years at Gilt where he earned the restaurant two Michelin stars.
Competing for: Autism Speaks

Hubert Keller
Position: Chef and owner of Fleur de Lys (San Francisco and Las Vegas), the Burger Bar (Las Vegas, St. Louis and soon to open in San Francisco) and his latest venture, SLeeK Steakhouse and Ultra Lounge (St. Louis)
Education: Ecole Hoteliere in Strasbourg
Foodie Fact: Hubert is the recipient of the James Beard Foundation's lifetime achievement award and was named one of the “10 Best New Chefs in America” by Food & Wine in 1988.
Competing for: Make-A-Wish Foundation

Michael Schlow
Position: Owner and chef of Radius in Boston
Education: Academy of Culinary Arts in New Jersey
Foodie Fact: In 2000, Schlow won the James Beard Award for “Best Chef in the Northeast” and his restaurant Radius in Boston was named “Best New Restaurant” by Food & Wine.
Competing for: Cam Neely Foundation

Tim Love
Position: Chef and owner of The Lonesome Dove Western Bistro and The Love Shack in Fort Worth
Education: University of Tennesse (Finance and Marketing)
Foodie Fact: The Love Shack earned three stars from The Dallas Morning News, which was singled out as having the "most perfect burger on the planet."
Competing for: March of Dimes

Elizabeth Falkner
Position: Executive Chef and owner of both Citizen Cake and Orson restaurants in San Francisco
Education: San Francisco Art Institute
Foodie Fact: Falkner won a James Beard Award Pastry Chef nomination in 2005 and Bon Appetit Pastry Chef of the Year in 2006.
Competing for: The Edible Schoolyard

Graham Elliot Bowles
Position: Owner and chef of Graham Elliot in Chicago
Education: Johnson and Wales University
Foodie Fact: During his four years leading the kitchen at The Peninsula Hotel in Chicago, he became the nations youngest four-star chef with perfect reviews from Chicago Magazine, Chicago Sun-Times and Chicago Tribune, as well as three James Beard award nominations.
Competing for: American Heart Association

Suzanne Tracht
Position: Executive chef and owner of Jar in Los Angeles, and Tracht in Long Beach.
Education: Three-year apprenticeship under Siegbert Wendler
Foodie Fact: Tracht was among Food and Wine magazine’s Best New Chefs in 2002, she's made national appearances on the Today Show, Food Network and Extra and was inducted into Fine Dining Hall of Fame by Nation’s Restaurant News in May 2007.
Competing for: JFS/SOVA Community Food and Resource Program

Wylie Dufrensne
Position: Chef and owner of New York’s highly celebrated wd~50 restaurant
Education: French Culinary Institute in New York
Foodie Fact: In 2009, Wylie was nominated for a James Beard Award for "Best Chef, New York City," and wd~50 was nominated for "Best New Restaurant."
Competing for: Autism Speaks

Cindy Pawlcyn
Position: Executive chef and owner of three Napa Valley restaurants – Cindy’s Backstreet Kitchen, Go Fish, and Mustards Grill
Foodie Fact: Cindy is the author of four widely acclaimed cookbooks: The Fog City Diner Cookbook, Mustards Grill Napa Valley Cookbook, Big Small Plates, and her newest, Cindy Pawlcyn’s Appetizers
Competing for: Community Health Clinic Ole

Ludo Lefebvre
Position: Chef and owner of Ludo Bites (opening Spring of 2009)
Education: Trained in Paris for 13 years at Restaurant L’Esperance with Marc Meneau, Restaurant Pierre Gagnaire, Arpege with Alain Passard and Le Grande Vefour with Guy Martin
Foodie Fact: Lefebvre was a nominee for the James Beard Foundation “Rising Chef Award” in 2001 and released his first cookbook, CRAVE, a Feast of the Five Senses in 2005.
Competing for: C.H.A.S.E. for Life

Rick Bayless
Position: Owner and chef of Frontera Grill and Topolobampo in Chicago
Education: non stated
Foodie Fact: Bayless has appeared in a number of television shows including The Today Show, Good Morning America and Martha Stewart Living. His own show, PBS's Mexico One Plate at a Time is now in its 7th season.
Competing for: Frontera Farmer Foundation

Wilo Benet
Position: Owner of Pikayo (now located at the Puerto Rico Museum of Art in San Juan), Payá, and Varita.
Education: Culinary Institute of America
Foodie Fact: In 1988, Benet was called in upon in to become Chef de Cuisine of “La Fortaleza,” the Governor of Puerto Rico’s mansion.
Competing for: San Jorge Children's Foundation

Lachlan Machinnon Patterson
Position: Co-owner and chef of Frasca Food and Wine in Boulder, Colorado
Education: Ecole Gregoire-Ferrandi
Foodie Fact: Patterson was named one of Food & Wine magazine’s Best New Chefs in July 2005 and won 2008 Best Chef: Southwest from the James Beard Foundation.
Competing for: The Children's Hospital

Michael Chiarello
Position: Chef and owner of Napa Valley's Bottega Restaurant
Education: Culinary Institute of America
Foodie Fact: Chiarello is the Emmy-winning host of Easy Entertaining with Michael Chiarello, and tastemaker behind NapaStyle, a specialty brand of foods and handcrafted products.
Competing for: The Clinic Ole Foundation

Nils Noren
Position: Noren serves as Vice President of Culinary Arts for The French Culinary Institute’s culinary, pastry, bread and Italian food departments.
Education: Culinary School in Gavle
Foodie Fact: In a 2008 survey of 40 top New York chefs, Noren was voted "The chef that should have gotten an award by now, but hasn't."
Competing for: Friends of The FCI

Rick Moonen
Position: Owner and chef of Rick RM Seafood at Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas.
Education: Culinary Institute of America
Foodie Fact: Moonen's passion and vocalization of sustainable seafood practices led him to publish Fish Without a Doubt in 2008
Competing for: Cape code Commercial Hook Fishermen's Association


The chefs with most national TV appearances could be Keller, Bayless and Dufresne. My favorite is John Besh. It will be itneresting to see how this competition goes and what we can elarn from how they do things.




« Last Edit: June 11, 2009, 02:25:27 PM by apskip »

Offline apskip

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Re: Top Chef Masters
« Reply #6 on: June 09, 2009, 01:09:05 PM »
In anticipation of tomorrow night's premiere, I went to the available published information to see what I could see. the best article is a BRAVO press release issued 4/7/09 reorganized and modified very slightly by me for readability:

BRAVO DISHES PREMIER OF TOP CHEF MASTERS
Each episode of "Top Chef Masters" holds two challenges for the chefs. The first is a twist on the classic "Top Chef" quickfire challenge which tests their basic abilities – for example in season 2 of "Top Chef" where the chef'testants had to create an amuse bouche out of items from a vending machine. Each quickfire challenge will be judged by a blind taste test and a five-star system, similar to fine dining reviews.

The second challenge is a more involved elimination challenge designed to test the versatility and invention of the chefs as they take on unique culinary trials such as working with unusual and exotic foods or catering for demanding clients. The food will be tasted and evaluated by the judges and a wide range of tasters for whom the challenge is aimed, whether it is patrons at a five-star restaurant or a room full of hungry kids – the food has to appeal to the diner as well as the critics if the chef is to survive.

In each episode, the winners of eliminations are awarded cash donations for their charities. The first six episodes will consist of four chefs competing against each other to name one winner. The six winners of each episode will then meet up for the final four weeks when one person will get eliminated each episode until the finale where one winner is crowned Top Chef Master. The winning chef will receive $100,000 for the charity of their choice.

"Top Chef Masters" will feature guest stars and judges Neil Patrick Harris, Zooey Deschanel, "Lost" writers and executive producers Carlton Cuse and Damon Lindelof, "Flipping Out's" Jeff Lewis, and for the first time, all past "Top Chef" winners will be together during an episode. The series will also showcase chef'testant fan favorites as well as appearances by "Top Chef's" Tom Colicchio, Padma Lakshmi and Gail Simmons.

However, the regular each-episode judges for this series are:
Gael Greene, New York Magazine's famed restaurant critic for over 40 years, a best-selling author and co-founder of Citymeals-on-Wheels, which provides food to the homebound elderly
James Oseland, culinary expert and Editor-in-Chief of Saveur magazine
British journalist, writer and broadcaster Jay Rayner

Kelly Choi, food journalist and creator, producer and host of NYC TV's weekly restaurant show "Eat Out NY," will host this highly competitive spin-off uniting some of the brightest stars in the world of food, showcasing the often cutthroat world of the culinary arts. A former model, Choi recently finished her book called "The 20 Most Delicious Dishes in New York," which is set to hit stores in spring of 2009.  I have seen Kelly in food-related programs on Chanel 25 New York City PBS and she is a good choice.





Offline apskip

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Re: Top Chef Masters
« Reply #7 on: June 10, 2009, 06:44:15 AM »
I have discovered some advance commentary on tonight's premier episode. The chefs are Hubert Keller, Tim Love, Christopher Lee and Michael Schlow. The focus is on desserts for the Quickfire. The elimination challenge is in a college dorm. They have access to microwave, hot plate and toaster oven and have 60 minutes to cook a 3 course meal. I would call this zany, but why not test the adaptability of these great chefs? My prediction is that the great Hubert Keller will advance to the next round.
« Last Edit: June 10, 2009, 07:07:59 PM by apskip »

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Re: Top Chef Masters
« Reply #8 on: June 10, 2009, 09:00:06 AM »
I am going to take a stab at predicting winners for 4 of the first 6 weeks based solely on national reputation. I have already stated in a prior post that I expect Keller to win over Love, Lee and Schlow in week 1. I have on idea when the initial round for the other groups of 4 will be telecast, but in future weeks here is how I expect it to be grouped:

Waxman, Cimarusti , Smith, Yamaguchi - winner Waxman
Peel, Rodriguez, Besh, Lo - none of these has sufficient national reputation, although I like Besh
Bowles, Tracht, Falkner, Dufresne - winner Dufresne
Pawlcyn, Lefebvre, Bayless, Benet - winner Bayless
Chiarello, Noren, Moonan, Patterson - winner Chiarello

Note - My prediction on groupings is right on so far. Next week the chefs are Bowles, Tracht, Falkner and Dufresne.
« Last Edit: June 11, 2009, 02:58:17 PM by apskip »

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Re: Top Chef Masters
« Reply #9 on: June 10, 2009, 09:38:54 AM »
 :hearts: Thanks for all you do apskip!

Here are the judges and cast:

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Re: Top Chef Masters
« Reply #10 on: June 10, 2009, 09:49:50 AM »
I have discovered some advance commentary on tonight's premier episode. The chefs are Hubert Keller, Tim Love, Christopher Lee and Michael Schlow. The focus is on desserts for the Quickfire. The elimination challenge is in a college room. They have access to microwave, hot plate and toaster oven and have 60 minutes to cook a 3 course meal. I would call this zany, but why not test the adaptability of these great chefs? My prediction is that the great Hubert Keller will advance to the next round.

Wow.. difficult but not impossible tasks. This will be fun to watch!
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Offline ZBC Company

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Re: Top Chef Masters
« Reply #11 on: June 10, 2009, 04:01:29 PM »
IT AKWARD NO BLACK

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Re: Top Chef Masters
« Reply #12 on: June 10, 2009, 07:14:01 PM »
IT AKWARD NO BLACK
Zachary Busch, that's the way the cookie crumbles, as we say in the U.S. There is no quota on this show. There are great African-American chefs in the U.S.  Great African-American chefs exist but they have not received sufficient national acclaim to be on this show. The only one I have seen on regular Top Chef as a Guest Judge is Marcus Samuelsson.

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Re: Top Chef Masters
« Reply #13 on: June 10, 2009, 07:15:16 PM »
I discovered form DirecTV that my note on airtime tonight was off (this was fixed in a post above) but it is 10pm to 11pm EDT for the premier episode.

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Re: Top Chef Masters
« Reply #14 on: June 10, 2009, 10:18:16 PM »
Was it worth the wait of months? The answer is yes. I found Top Chef Masters to be more entertaining than even the regular Top Chef due to the ease of the chefs competing. These are experienced chefs at the top of their game, so they don't have to sweat too hard. They have faced and overcome stiffer challenges. That does not allow them to be relaxed, but they are clearly at ease.

Tonight's Quickfire used 4 girl scouts as judges of desserts. They were not shy about their commentary. Their scores (maximum 5 stars) were Michael 2.5 Tim 3.5 Chris 3.5 Hubert 5. All carried those points into the final tabulation, so Hubert had a 1.5 point lead over Tim and Chris. The elimination challenge 3 courses were prepared in a dorm room with a microsave, hot plate and toaster oven. There was no refrigeration or freezing, although Hubert did rig up the shower to act like a refrigerator and also oven depending on whether running cold or hot water aroudn the bowl with his mac and cheese. Michael stated for all 4 of them that he had newly developed respect for the regular Top Chef competitors who get these unusual and diffcult challenges.

The judging was by the average score of 4 college students who sampled all dishes. Gael Greene(New York City restaruant critic for 40 years), Jay Rayner(food critic for the London Observer) and James Oseland(editor-in-chief of Saveur magazine). They each gave a score to the competitors. Here are the results:

Michael 13.5
Tiim 14.5
Chris 19
Hubert 20.5

In essence, Tim and Hubert tied for top food, but Hubert won due to his Quickfire performance.

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Offline RHR

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Re: Top Chef Masters
« Reply #15 on: June 10, 2009, 10:31:50 PM »
I actually swing the other way with regards to which is more entertaining.

I prefer the regular version of Top Chef over what we've seen so far with Masters because of those reality show elements of having characters and people to root for/against, and the bits of drama to keep things interesting. On Masters we're not going to see recurring chefs until episode seven, and even then the show seems completely focused on the food and challenges. As for the drama, since these are established chefs who aren't struggling to make a name for themselves, the tension just isn't there.

Basically it's a really laid-back version of Top Chef, and while it will hold me over until Top Chef returns this winter, it certainly won't replace it. :tup:

« Last Edit: June 10, 2009, 10:34:57 PM by RHR »

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Re: Top Chef Masters
« Reply #16 on: June 11, 2009, 07:26:56 AM »
RHR,

Your point of view is certainly a valid one. However, the personality clashes that you like I regard to be irrelevant and uninteresting. More airtime for food and challenge details is exactly what regular Top Chef needs.

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Re: Top Chef Masters
« Reply #17 on: June 11, 2009, 01:58:03 PM »
More airtime for food and challenge details is exactly what regular Top Chef needs.
I disagree. There are already plenty of shows on Food Network that focus completely on the food and some of those are in a challenge format, such as Chopped, Food Network Challenge, etc. Top Chef has been in a way the antithesis of Hell's Kitchen, in that it remains a reality show competition with recurring contestants every week that you can connect with, but it's everything that Hell's Kitchen isn't at the same time.

As someone summed it up better than I could on another site:
"This show was good, but let's face it, Top Chef Masters is no Top Chef. It's just impossible to develop any sort of relationship with the contestants in that short a period of time. If you like cooking shows you will like it, but like I said, it's no Top Chef."

Offline apskip

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Re: Top Chef Masters
« Reply #18 on: June 11, 2009, 02:18:49 PM »
Here is a preview of next week's episode of Top Chef Masters(from futoncritic.com):

Operating on an extremely tight budget, the chefs must create the perfect amuse-bouche using only what they can find in a vending machine (a quickfire from season two of "Top Chef"). Then, Master chefs Wylie Dufresne (wd~50), Suzanne Tracht (Jar), Graham Elliot Bowles (Graham Elliot Restaurant) and Elizabeth Falkner (Orson) find themselves "lost" as they are challenged to make a meal inspired by the hit TV show, using ingredients such as fish, wild boar, fresh fruits and canned goods chosen by The Dharma Initiative, among other island specialties. "Lost" co-creators, executive producers and writers Carlton Cuse and Damon Lindelof guest star, and one chef moves on to the Champions Round. For an early look go to
Top Chef Masters Videos

You should be delighted with the rage of Top Chef Masters videos there. First there are some from ep.1, then previews of ep.2, then 2 commercials for the season, then the 24 bios of the chefs. I will offer you a hint:

If you start in the upper left and let it go beyond the end of the first one you watch, you will automatically be cycled through the entire collection with short commercials (which are usually funny and worth watching).

Offline TexasLady

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Re: Top Chef Masters
« Reply #19 on: June 11, 2009, 02:46:24 PM »
I found Top Chef Masters entertaining. I've lost a little of my love for TC because of the way the last one ended but I can enjoy Top Chef Masters because they have such a high level of expertise, which is put to the test by things they ordinarily don't have to deal with. For example shopping, as they had to do last night. Certainly it puts to the test anyone's abilities to cook for critics and guests in a small dorm room with none of the things they are accustomed to using like stoves, specialized prep area, many pans, the list is endless.  I thought all the chefs did well, especially Tim who had to overcome frozen ingredients.

I do wish that we had more opportunity to see all the chefs compete with each other but I understand why they aren't using the TC format. These are busy people with real restaurants to run. They couldn't spare 6 weeks for the type of intense competition we see on TC.

I do wish they would let the kids critique each week. I liked their comments much better than Tom's.  :lol: (I should say Tom's on TC.)  ;)
« Last Edit: June 11, 2009, 03:37:16 PM by TexasLady »
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Offline apskip

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Re: Top Chef Masters
« Reply #20 on: June 11, 2009, 03:22:17 PM »
One of the videos available is http://www.bravotv.com/top-chef-masters/videos/hubert-kellers-macaroni-and-cheese . I can highly recommend this almost 8 minute redoing of the Hubert Keller mac and cheese recipe as Fabio Viviani and Michael Demmert (who may be a sous for one of the Hubert Keller Fleur de Lys restaurants, I'm not sure) demonstrate this recipe:

Ingredients - pasta, prawns, onions, white cheddar cheese, parsley, egg yolk, heavy cream, half-and-half, carrots, mushrooms, olive oil

Instructions:
1. chop carrots and stir in with onions, adding ground pepper and salt
2. Add olive oil.
3. Saute mushrooms, add more salt and ground pepper
4. Dice shrimp (or you are Fabio, shrimps) and saute
5. Toss shrimp and cook until they are turning red, then take it off the heat immediately
6. Add pasta to boilingwater
7. Add cream and half-and-half to the main pan and heat a little.
8. Add cheddar and adjust salt and pepper.
9. Strain pasta.
10. Stir pasta into sauce.
11. Add egg yolk and parsley.

total cooking time appeared to be about 7 minutes (assuming boiling water ready to go), just less than the length of the video.
« Last Edit: June 12, 2009, 11:12:48 AM by apskip »

Offline TexasLady

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Re: Top Chef Masters
« Reply #21 on: June 11, 2009, 03:38:02 PM »
Thanks for the video link!  :tup:
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Re: Top Chef Masters
« Reply #22 on: June 12, 2009, 08:32:39 PM »
Top Chef Masters, Introduction

The creators of Top Chef have extended that franchise to run a competition much like regular Top Chef for some of the finest chefs in the U.S. The 24 competing master chefs (all of whom have numerous awards that I will not bore you with here) are:

Michael Schlow from Boston - owner/chef at Radius and involved in 4 other restaurants; Tom Colicchio does a voiceover to type him as a preeminent Italian chef; Michael is competing for the Cam Neely Foundation for Cancer Care
Hubert Keller Chef/Owner Fleur de Lys restaurants in San Francisco and Las Vegas as well as Burger Bar, on Top Chef 1 ep. 1 as a judge, so he wants to see what it's like as a competitor (he will clearly find this out!), is French with culinary training in France, playing for Make A Wish Foundation
Christopher Lee - executive chef at Aureole in New York City, trained with Daniel Boulud and Jean-Georges Vonderichten, playing for Autism Speaks
Tim Love from Fort Worth - owner/chef of Lonesome Dove Bistro, Texas cuisine expert, not formally trained or mentored, playing for March of Dimes

The format of Top Chef Masters is quite similar to that of regular Top Chef. The 24 chefs are divided into six groups of 4 chefs. Care was taken to make sure that two of the heavy hitters (Hubert Keller, Rick Bayliss, Wiley Dufresne, Jonathan Waxman) did not get into the same group. The once a week episode for the first 6 episodes will feature the competition of one of those groups. The six winners then go into a Champions Round, which mirrors the Final 6 from regular Top Chef with one eliminated each week until a winner is reached.

The tasks should  be very familiar to viewers of regular Top Chef. The show starts without any of the "personality development" and gets right to the Quickfire Challenge. A classic Top Chef challenge will be twisted a bit each week, sometimes by changing the setting of where food prep/cooking will occur, and scoring will be by an individual judge or group of judges. The remainder of the episode is the Elimination Challenge, which is like regular elimination challenges except that the master chefs are given less time. These may be judged partly by an outside panel, but the core of the judging will be by the panel of:
Gael Greene - New York City restaurant critic for 40 years, author and founder of City-Meal-on Wheels.
Jay Rayner - London Observer restaurant critic and writer
James Oseland - editor-in-chief of Saveur magazine and culinary expert

Each chef is playing for a charity of their choice plus for the fame inherent in the title Top Chef Master. The winner of each preliminary round goes to the Champions Round while the losers get an unstated amount for theirs. The winner of the Champions Round gets a check to their charity for $100,000.

Episode 1

The Quickfire challenge was to create a yummy dessert for some guests with a special affinity for sweet things.  It is typically the most difficult type of dish for any chef in Top Chef. The dishes prepared for Tonight's Quickfire were:

Michael - warm chocolate cake with peanut butter and chocolate candies; ice cream was planned but would not freeze in time and his cake wouldn't bake so he was forced to  improvise
Tim - chicken fried strawberries, dipped strawberries, strawberry shake; collectively, Strawberries 3 Ways
Chris - French toast with caramelized bananas, orange sauce and maple syrup fluff
Hubert - chocolate mousse swan, whipped cream mouse, fruit with orange sabayon

4 girl scouts were the judges of desserts. They were not shy about their commentary.  On Tim they had diverse comments but they did not like the shake. Their scores (maximum 5 stars) were Michael 2.5 Tim 3.5 Chris 3.5 Hubert 5. All carried those points into the final tabulation, so Hubert had a 1.5 point lead over Tim and Chris.

The elimination challenge 3 courses were prepared in a dorm room at Pomona College with Calphalon brand microwave, hot plate and toaster oven. Chefs had $150 to spend in 45 minutes and then the next day 2 hours to prep and cook. Michael quips "Whoever's room this is, their parents will not be happy." After completing his cooking, he quipped "Project Destroy Dorm Room is finished."  Tim had problems with frozen vegetables. There was no refrigeration or freezing, although Hubert did rig up the shower to act like a refrigerator and also oven depending on whether running cold or hot water around the bowl with his mac and cheese. Michael stated for all 4 of them that he had newly developed respect for the regular Top Chef competitors who get these unusual and difficult challenges.

The dishes in the first course were:
Michael -7 crudo w/ cucumber, mint, red chilies
Tim - scallop carpaccio w/ lime and chili and kumquat
Chris - Red Snapper Ceviche w/ citrus juices, avocado and popcorn
Hubert - Scottish Salmon cuit over creamy whole-grained mustard

The second course dishes were:
Michael -  cabbage soup w/ smoked bacon, fennel and white beans
Tim - squash and corn pozole with corn (not hominy that was not available)
Chris - Creamy Risotto w/ prosciutto, kale and Parmesan cheese
Hubert - hearty carrot and petite pea soup w/ cinnamon and croutons

The third course dishes were:
Michael - pork a l'Apicius w/ broccolini and mushrooms
Tim - skirt steak and braised kale
Chris - Pan Roasted Pork Chop piperade, crushed potatoes, mache and fennel salad
Hubert - creamy macaroni and cheese with prawns, mushrooms and fresh herbs

Commentary from the judges included:
Michael - excellent soup, pork overcooked
Tim - not enough heat for a dish with the name "chili"; pozole good tailgating food; skirt steak and kale overseasoned
Chris - really good for a faux risotto, flavor profile fabulous although not al dente
Hubert - macaroni and cheese excellent comfort food but cinnamon disliked in soup by 2 male judges

25% of the judging score was the average score for appeared to be 6 to 8 college students who sampled all dishes. Permanent judges Gael Greene(New York City restaurant critic for 40 years), Jay Rayner (food critic for the London Observer) and James Oseland (editor-in-chief of Saveur magazine) each gave a score to the competitors. Here are the results (S for Students, G for Greene, R for Rayner, and O for Oseland):

Michael - S 3.5 G 2.5 R 2.5 O 2.5 total 13.5    
Tiim - S 3 G 2.5 R 3 O 2.5 total 14.5
Chris - S 4 G 4 R 4 O 3.5 total 19
Hubert S 4 G 4 R 3.5 O 4 total 20.5

In essence, Tim and Hubert tied for top food in the Elimination Challenge, but Hubert won due to his Quickfire performance. He goes to the Champions Round starting in 6 weeks (Bastille Day July 14 for those that are counting). Hubert won $10,000 for the Make A Wish Foundation, courtesy of Lexus. The others were awarded a minor amount for the Cam Neely Center to Cure Cancer, March of Dimes and Autism Speaks.

I liked Kelly Choi as host. She is not a recognized culinary expert like Padma Lakshmi, but they did not ask Padma to host this. Kelly was firmly in charge on camera and we will see how much culinary expertise she actually has in future weeks.
« Last Edit: June 13, 2009, 03:44:25 PM by apskip »

Offline apskip

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Re: Top Chef Masters
« Reply #23 on: June 19, 2009, 07:03:20 PM »
Top Chef Masters, prelim round 2

The competing chefs are Graham Elliott (chef/owner of Graham Bowles Elliott in Chicago), Wiley Dufresne (chef/owner of WD-50 in NYC and a leading proponent of molecular gastronomy), Suzanne Tracht (chef/owner of Jar restaurant in Los Angeles) and Elizabeth Faulkner (owner of Citizen Cake and Orson restaurants in San Francisco and an Iron Chef America). They are playing for the charities Sova Food Pantry (Suzanne), Edible Schoolyard (Elizabeth), Autism Speaks (Wiley) and American Heart Association (Graham and my favorite charity). SOVA is Hebrew for eat and be satisfied and the name for this service of Jewish Family Services of Los Angeles. Based on reputation, I expect Wiley Dufresne to be the winner of this group.

The Quickfire is a repeat of Season 2, Episode 13 where the cheftestants were given a roll of quarters and could buy anything available in a bank of food vending machines. Wiley selects 2 ham/cheese sandwiches, potato chips and peanuts, Graham 1 ham/cheese sandwich plus can of Coke and candy bars, Elizabeth beef jerky and orange juice and Dr. Pepper and Suzanne Cheetos, Fritos and Doritos. They must create an amuse bouche.

The created dishes were:
Wiley - grilled cheese sandwich with red onions and Dr. Pepper reduction
Graham - tuna salad, licorice, pickled shallots w/ ginger orange and beef jerky miso powder
Elizabeth - braised beef jerky with orange juice, lemon and horseradish ice cream
Suzanne - fried shallot rings with microgreen salad and aioli with Dr. Pepper

Wiley had a lot of trouble throughout the Quickfire and did not get all his sauce plated in time. The judges were from Top Chef Season 2, winner Ilan Hall, Michael Midgeley, and Betty Fraser. They ate and evaluated each dish on a 5 point scale. Their results were:

Wiley 3.0
Graham 4.5
Elizabeth 3.5
Suzanne 5.0 with the best dish

Next was an Elimination Challenge with 20 points maximum to be earned from the regular judges and the composite of guest judges. The guests were the Executive Producer of LOST, another producer and multiple writers. This challenge was to take ingredients only from a large table of boar, fish, seafood, tropical fruits and very few other things plus cans or jars on a pre-approved list from the Dharma initiative. What is that, you ask (as I did)? The Internet says that "Lost" revealed that "DHARMA" is an acronym for the fictional Department of Heuristics And Research on Material Applications. The Dharma Initiative brought together "scientists and free thinkers" from around the globe at a "large-scale communal research compound" to conduct research in various disciplines, including meteorology, psychology, parapsychology, zoology, electromagnetism, and a sixth discipline that the orientation film begins to identify as "utopian social-" before being cut off.


They each had $200 and 45 mintues to shop in Whole Foods for only those approved items. They had 2.5 hours the next day to cook and plate. The dishes created were:

Wiley - chicken and custard-style egg cooked using some special techniques of an immersion circulator, beets, dried corn, plaintain
Graham - tuna 3 ways (pineapple maki roll with green beans, nicoise, a la plancha w hearts opf palm)
Suzanne - wild boar w/ oyster beer sauce, uni sea urchin risotto, mango corn salad
Elizabeth - beer braised boar loin, poached boar loin, yam papaya pudding

During the service, Wylie mistakenly put who chicken portions on one plate and none of another. This was sorted out but I think he lost minor points as a result.  Comments by the judges were:
Wylie's chicken was perfect and well-cooked. There were questions about how he made the eggs like custard. Suzanne had "lots of stuff on the plate" but not too much for the judges. Elizabeth was told that her yams and papaya were too sweet.

The judges (James Oseland O, Jay Rayner J, Gael Greene G, LOST composite L) 
plus the LOST bunch voted as follows:

Wiley        L 3.5 O 5.0 J 4.0 G 4.5  total  17, combined gives 20
Elizabeth  L 3.5 O 3.0 J 3.0 G 3.5  total  13, combined gives 16.5
Graham    L 4.5 O 4.0 J 4.0 G 3.5  total  16, combined gives 20.5
Suzanne  L 4.5 O 4.5 J 4.0 G 4.5  total  17.5, combined gives 22.5, the clear winner 

So, Suzanne won by having the best scores on both the Quickfire and Elimination Challenge. She got a $10,000 check for SOVA Food Pantry while the others got minor amounts for their charities. Suzanne goes to join Hubert keller so far in the Masters round.


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Re: Top Chef Masters
« Reply #24 on: June 25, 2009, 03:57:16 PM »
It was another exciting Top Chef Masters show. I find it much more interesting than regular Top Chef and you should expect that master chefs know more and are less nervous about doing well (because they undisputedly already are).

Last night's chefs were:

Wilo Benet - from Puerto Rico and chef/owner of Pikayo and owner of 2 other restaurants there. He is not a household name in the lower 48 states but is revered in Puerto Rico. He is playing for the San Jorge Children's Foundation.

Emily Pawclyn - chef/owner of the famous Mustard's Grill in Napa Valley CA. She is playing for Clinic OK, which provides affordable helath care. She says that most of her workers use it.

Rick Bayliss - owner of Fontera and Topolobambo restaurants in Chicago and TV chef extraordainire. I believe I have seen every episode for his multi-year Mexican cooking series. He is playing for the Frontera Farms Foundation.

Ludovic Lefebvre - chef/owner of Ludobites in Los Angeles. I am not surprised seeing him in action why Ludo did not return to Bastide after it was renovated. He is prickly and difficult to get along with, partly due to unrealistic expectations and high desire to win at all costs. He also disparaged Jay Rayner for being British and obviously unable to properly judge a Frenchman. I found him to be a bit of a jerk on this show. He is playing for C.H.A.S.E. for LIFE.

The Quickfire is 30 minutes to create a meal of one color only. Ludo draws the knife corresponding to Red, Cindy to Yellow, Rick to Green and Wilo to Red. The judges will be a group of 3 style/presentation oriented females - a food stylist, a cookbook author, and a food photographer.

Rick Bayliss states that he is the dean of slow-cooked food, so he expects to be at a disadvantage with 30 minutes to cook.

Ludo does not get tomato on his plate (tough luck) but is allowed to see that a tomatillo sauce that went on several plates be available for all of them. The irony is that one of the judges tells him that it is better without that sauce.

The dishes are:

Ludo - steak tartare, watermelon, red onions, red beet gazpacho, tomatillo sauce
Cindy - yeloow vegetable curry over sweet corn grits and fried corn tortillas
Rick - roasted vegetables cookeed in banana leaves, with mole verde, tomatillo,green chiles and pumpkin seed
Wilo - Smoked Salmon Tartare w/ coconut mousse and tomato sauce

Wilo left a silver ring on the plate when it should have been removed in plating. I believe this cost him only fractions of a point.

The scoring is:
Ludo - 3
Cindy - 3.5
Rick - 4
Wilo - 4.5

The Exlimination Challenge is about the use of different types of offal to make an appetizing street food meal to be served at Universal Studios after 3 hours prep and 1 hour of readiness onsite. The knife draw corresponds to this assignment of the protein:

Wilo- beef hearts
Cindy - tripe
Rick - beef tongue
Ludo - pigs ears

In my opinion, Rick has the easiesst ingredient and Ludo the hardest. The public is invited to a poll on this (great alliteration "which offal is the most awful?") and they find everything but beef tongue to be about the same in difficulty and the beef tongue much easier. The chefs have $300 each and 45 minutes to shop at Whole Foods.

The main dishes will be:
Ludo - Pork Quesadilla (wanting to best Rick Bayliss in his specialty) w/chorizo, pinto bean puree, lime aioli, garlic, and smoked paprika
Wilo - Puerto Rican street vendor "tripleta" of beef, ham and chicken in pita bread, with cheddar, ketchup and mayonnaise 
Cindy - menudo, an obvious way of cooking tripe that people like (she says that her staff have it every Sunday) w/ fresh whole tomatillos and cilantro
Rick - Tongue Taco (true to his Mexican skills, which his restaurant staff had urged him to focus on) chorizo, tomatillo and cilantro, w/ guacamole and pickled onions

In the kitchen, Rick helped Cindy on how to work a pressure cooker. The Universal Studios outdoor location was fine. Ludo had trouble making quesadillas fast enough early on, but got it going later.  Rick was amazed that so many people came to try their food. I have two words of explanation: FREE FOOD. It brings them in every time and to enhance that it is made by famous chefs.

In the Judges Ask the Chefs part of the competition, James asked Ludo if his court boullion of tomatoes, carrots, onions and leeks was robust enough. Cindy admitted that her menudo just didn't have enough "punch". James told Wilo he may have cut his beef hearts too thin. Ludo responded that pig's ears did not work on a quesadilla.

It was pretty obvious from the judges commentary that Rick would be on top, Wilo close behind and Ludo and Cindy fighting to avoid the bottom spot. The actual scores were:

Ludo Public 3.5 O 4 J 3 G 3  subtotal 13.5, total 16.5
Cindy Public 3 O 2.5 J 3.5 G 3  subtotal 12, total 15.5
Rick Public 4 O 4.5 J 5 G 5  subtotal 18.5, total 22.5
Wilo Public 4 O 4 J 4 G 3  subtotal 15, total 19.5

Rick Bayliss wins the $10,000 for his Frontera Farm Foundation. I find that apporpriate since he had the biggest reputation of these 4 chefs coming into this competition
   







 

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