On week seven of Top Chef: Texas the game is on as the cheftestants prepare a dish for a game dinner! In episode 7, we are graced with the presence of guest judge Tim Love, chef/owner of Lonesome Dove Western Bistro alongside our fantastic Top Chef judges, Padma Lakshmi, Tom Colicchio, and Hugh Acheson.
There are 12 cheftestants left, and Nyesha Arrington starts us off by remembering how rude Heather Terhune was during last episode to call out Beverly Kim in front of the entire group. Just as a reminder, when all the chefs were waiting for Padma to call the losers to the judges’ table, Heather made sure to let the whole group know that Beverly had taken too long with the task of skinning shrimp. Basically, Heather was saying that if anyone was going to get kicked out, it should be Beverly. Nyesha said that Heather’s actions say “a lot about her integrity.”
Back at the Top Chef Texas headquarters in Dallas, Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts, the remaining “dirty dozen” chefs met Tim Love. Edward Lee introduces Love as a very well-known chef in Fortworth and a Top Chef Master.
The challenge was to pick a type of Don Julio Tequila and create a dish that goes well with the choice. The cheftestants had 30 minutes to work for the reward of $5,000. This episode, however, they would not be getting immunity for winning the Quickfire Challenge.
Again, Ty-Lor Boring claims that he has an advantage because he “has been to Jalisco.” Then again he has been saying that for every episode. Last time he claimed that he had worked in a steakhouse in New York and therefore he had the advantage. Let’s remember that he almost got disqualified. I can’t wait to see what happens this episode. Although I would love it if he wins this challenge, for a change. Chris Jones was careful with his dish because he was weary of the high alcohol content. Therefore, he wanted to make something that would dull the flavor.
- Ty-Lor Boring prepared Steamed Clams in Thai Style Fish Caramel Sauce.
- Heather Terhune prepared Mango Avocado Salad with Rock Shrimp.
- Beverly Kim prepared Cold-Smoked Green Tea Oyster.
- Sarah Gruenebergprepared Fennel Risotto with Glazed Scallops.
- Lindsay Autryprepared Salmon with Fennel Puree and Brown Butter Sauce.
- Edward Lee prepared Bok Choy Lettuce Wrap with Lamb.
- Chris Jones prepared Pan-Seared Chicken with Lime Vinaigrette.
- Grayson Schmitzprepared Sesame Cod with Tequila Brown Sugar Glaze.
- Chris Crary prepared Raw Oyster with Tequila Tapioca and Sea Salt Air.
- Dakota Weiss prepared Lamb with Medijool Date Pistou.
Love said that while some chefs really used the tequila as a pairing, others really didn’t live up to the challenge. For instance, Heather’s dish seemed like it was prepared as if she liked tequila and she cooked rock shrimp. Chris J.’s chicken was too dry. Sarah’s risotto was undercooked. Rather than accept constructive criticism, she said “I’ve been training with experts in Italy on how to make risotto. I’m not gonna change how I cook risotto due to somebody’s palate.” Well Sarah, who are these so-called experts when an American is telling you you’re doing it wrong? Admittedly, we can’t blame the experts if you can’t learn your lesson.Maybe Sarah got defensive with them as well.
One of the favorites were Chris C.’s who matched the caviar nicely with the Tequila Blanco. Lindsay’s salmon was “cooked really nicely” and the flavor of the tequila could be tasted throughout the dish. Ty’s spiciness in the dish was a really good contrast to the tequila, “and the greenery was really good too.” The winner of the $5,000 was Ty! Finally! He says he has an advantage and he won!
For this challenge, the cheftestants were paired up to cook one course for a game dinner. In an ironic twist, Heather was paired with Beverly. It’s ironic because Heather hates Beverly. Edward was paired with Ty. Last time that happened, they got “their asses handed” to them (according to Edward).
Tim Love invited his friends, who are also chefs, to the show. Each friend would pick a protein that one pair of cheftestants had to cook. The cheftestants would also have to cook for each other because in this challenge, everyone gets to judge! The winning team gets to split $10,000. Also, in this challenge, there will be a double elimination. That means if a team loses, both cheftestants go home.
Unfortunately, the irony in this challenge of pairing Heather and Beverly served as a very unpleasant match. Mainly because Heather was being a complete bitch. And those aren’t my words, they’re Edward’s. He’s the one that mentioned Heather was being a “complete bitch” to Beverly.Lindsay Autry and Chris Crary prepared Roasted Wild Boar with Kohlrabi Slaw and Farro Fried Rice.
- Lindsay Autry and Chris Crary prepared Roasted Wild Boar with Kohlrabi Slaw and Farro Fried Rice.
- Beverly Kim and Heather Terhune prepared Five-Spice Duck Breast with Creamy Polenta and Pickled Cherries.
- Dakota Weiss and Nyesha Arrington prepared Roasted Rack of Venison with Kobocha Squash and Beet Gratin.
- Grayson Schmitz and Chris Jones prepared Juniper Roasted Elk with Sweet Potato and Bouquet of Citrus Greens.
- Paul Qui and Sarah Grueneberg prepared Squab Breast and Sausage with Nectarine Pickled.
- Ty-Lor Boring and Edward Lee prepared Sorghum Quail with Pickled Cherries and Eggplant.
When Padma walked in she asked for Ed and Ty. Everyone thinks they’re the winners so they clap and congratulate them. Sure enough, when they got to the judges’ table Tim Love was the first to congratulate them for winning.
Once they found out who the winners were, the cehftestants had the difficult task of choosing the three worst teams to send to the judges’ tables. Now they had to criticize each other without blatantly insulting each other. Edward made an interesting observation that they could try to backstab someone, but the next episode they could be teamed up with the person who was betrayed. He finished by saying “the claws aren’t fully out yet.”
The three teams chosen were Dakota and Nyesha, Heather and Beverly, and Grayson and Chris.
At the judge’s table, there was an extremely nasty moment where Heather condescended Beverly in front of the judges. Heather claimed that Beverly had a bad work ethic. However, Dakota could not take the unpleasantness and stood up for Beverly saying that “she kicks ass in the kitchen.” Then when Heather and Beverly rejoined the rest of the cheftestants, Grayson also stood up for Beverly.
In the end of the episode, the team with the worst dish was Dakota and Nyesha’s. Dakota felt terrible because Nyesha did her part of the teamwork, while Dakot under-cooked the venison. However, Nyesha didn’t check up on Dakota, which is why the judges decided to make their team “pack your knives.” Nyesha and Dakota aren’t entirely done, since they still have to face Whitney Otawkain another double elimination for the Last Chance Kitchen.