Jun 11, 2007

Next Food Network Star: The Winner's Circle Feels Better Than the Chopping Block

One thing is for sure, you can never predict who will cave under pressure and who will rise to the top. On this show, projecting your personality is as important as cooking for the next network star. This week's competition had the contestants grill a dish that would make the cover of the July issue of Bon Appetit magazine.Nikki, who was cut, made the mistake of rehearsing her presentation ahead of time. Consequently, she seemed fake and wooden on air. In addition, she presented a Jamaica Me Crazy Jerk Chicken that had no jerk! Oooh, that's so not good. Especially when the cover of Bon Appetit magazine is the prize. So Nikki, who cooks in sexy high heels, was cut for over scripting her presentation and for an inferior recipe.
The winner, Rory, felt that after last week's awful performance she had something to prove. So she made her special grilled ribs and added a visual twist: grilled canteloupe. This impressed Barbara Fairchild, editor in chief of Bon Appetit magazine, enough to win her over. Look for Rory's dish on the BA cover in July!

A close second was Michael, who is rapidly becoming my favorite chef in this series. He impressed me and the judges with this tip: Throwing the extra herbs for the chicken on the grill to impart a smoky flavor. Confident of his dish, Michael crowed, "My dish makes the home cook look like a cooking star." I was rather disappointed that he didn't win, but I predict he will go far in this competition.

Some other favorite moments in this episode:

Paul reminding Judge Bob Tuschman of a really cute hyper kinetic Jack Russel Terrier.

Colombe mistaking her skirt steak for a flank steak.

Tommy going off camera during the team demo. I don't have a photo of this, but you saw half of him and then he stopped talking.

Guest judge Giada de Laurentiis telling JAG that he "took one for the team," when he picked up the slack during the team demo.

JAG saying that judge Giada is very "hotta."
Tommy observing that JAG's got two speeds in the kitchen: Fast and warp.

Along with Michael, JAG is turning out to be the break out "character" in this show, even though his brash personality doesn't translate well on camera.

Who will stay and who will go next? Tune in next Sunday when two more contestants will be cut.

Click here for a list of the contestants on another blog, and here for the Food Network site.

Goodbye Nikki, and good luck in your culinary future. Don't give us that tough look, girlfriend. Reserve it for the judges!


potty mouth princess said...

I'm also enjoying the Savage, but I don't quite get his angle yet, though the grilled herbs were a stroke of genius.

JAG is too Guy-esque to take it, but will probably make top 3 for his in-your-face factor.

Poor, gentle Columbe. They already have Ellie Kreiger, so no chance there.

Rory? Too many teeth. They already have the dental demographic covered with Giada and Rachael Ray.

That Paul dude? Top four...Dave Martin twitch factor times 100. The rest of them are already blurring.

Personally, I think the TC contestants have more personality than the majority of these vanilla beans combined. YMMV.

Ms. Place said...

Agree, Potty Mouth, the Bravo folks have the cooking competition formula down, and they know how to showcase personalities.

I think Food Network knows this. They are going to eliminate two chefs next week, which means they'll be down to six already. Fine with me.

Love the Paul dude. I think Adrien is scheduled for the chopping block.

Anonymous said...

I can not believe the attitude of Giada. She is severly judgemental towards the contestants. My vote is not to have her as a "guest" judge in the upcoming eposides or every again. She is definetly a monster in sheep's clothing. I refuse to watch her show again (everyday italian).