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Top Chef DC ep 4: Cookin’ Up Some Hotel Hash

Updated on June 30, 2013
Top Chef
Top Chef | Source


During the obligatory scenes at the Top Chef house, Arnold was ironing his jeans.  That made me giggle.

For the Quickfire this week, there wasn’t a guest judge.  Instead the cheftestants had to make a meal for Tom and Padma, and since they are both new parents, there had to be a pureed version of the dish to be fed to a baby.  I found that very strange.

This was a high stakes Quickfire, and Tom and Padma would choose one winner each that would take home $10,000.  Arnold, the philanthropist, said he would donate the money to an orphanage in Thailand for kids with AIDS.  Awww.  Meanwhile, Alex would spend his on hookers and eight-balls.  Classy.

A little insight was provided into Kenny’s personal life.  His wife died when their daughter was a baby, and Kenny raised her on his own.  He made all of her baby food, so he was not intimidated by this challenge (is he ever?).  Stephen, on the other hand, revealed his great disdain for Kenny and silently criticized the size of his apple chunks.  Cooking competitions get so ferocious! 

In truly frightening news, Angelo has a spawn.  Yikes.

Bottom:  Tim, Alex (no coke for you!), Kevin, Kelly

Kevin made duck (which sounds like a delicious puree…) and did not get everything on his plate.  Gotta work on those time management skills, man!  When Padma tasted Kelly’s puree, she spit out a lemon seed.  That’s never good for babies…or hot judges!

Top:  Lynne, Tamesha, Angelo, Kenny

Kenny was visibly annoyed by Angelo being in Padma’s top picks.  Ultimately, Padma chose Kenny and Tom chose Tamesha.

Elimination Challenge

Beth Scott from Hilton Hotels was the guest judge for the elimination challenge.  The chefs chose partners and competed tournament-style, making meals appropriate for hotel service.  Every group made breakfast, and the top two teams were exempt from making the next course and ultimately from elimination.  The rest of the losers had to make lunch, and the two winning teams from that were exempt from making dinner.  Three teams made dinner, and the “worst” team was eliminated.  Clear?  Probably not.

Every time Lynne has to work on a team she says “I’m used to being the boss.”  You’re an instructor, we get it.  Now play nice with others!

The Boys Are Back In Town

There was a pretty large panel of food tasters, including some familiar faces.  Mike Isabella, Bryan Voltaggio, and Spike Mendlesohn of past seasons showed up to share their insight, along with Nora Poullon.

During the breakfast round, Tiffany and Tim made crab cake benedict with asparagus.  I’m way too poor to understand how that’s breakfast food.  Ed and Alex spent almost the whole time bickering and no hollandaise sauce made their eggs before the buzzer sounded.  It turned out that Ed also forgot to put a cake on one of the plates, after all his bitching about Alex’s incompetence.  Meanwhile, Angelo was shamelessly hitting on Tamesha who could not be less interested in that pompous pervert.  Top:  Amanda & Stephen, Tiffany & Tim 

Watching Arnold chop with one hand during the lunch course was badass.  Tamesha and Angelo’s dish didn’t seem to be anything but thin slices of beef and some leaves.  I don’t know about you, but I’m hungrier than that!  The judges smack talked Kelly and Andrea for using canned beans.  Punks.  Top:  Angelo & Tamesha, Alex & Ed

The elimination round came down to Kenny & Kevin, Arnold & Lynne, and Kelly & Andrea.  I was definitely hoping that the girls would have a massive fail since I dig Kenny and Arnold.  Kelly and Kenny’s teams made short ribs—I guess that’s the quintessential hotel food?  Meanwhile, Arnold & Lynne made some pasta/mussel dish that involved squid ink.  I love ya A-Man, but there’s no way I’d ever order that. 

Arnold had his hands full with Ms. Bossy Pants Lynne.  There was a huge disagreement over when the pasta should be cooked—Lynne wanted to wait until the last minute, but Arnold was trying to leave time for plating.  He tried as hard as he could to be diplomatic without smacking her.  In the end, the pasta was undercooked.

Judges’ Table

Backstage, Kevin and Amanda had a heated discussion over whether or not it is appropriate to instruct people on how to eat their food.  Kevin said yes, as the chef, you have every right to let people know the best way to enjoy your dish.  Amanda believes that the chef has no place to tell anyone how to do anything.  I bet Freud would have loved to analyze this conversation.

So my nightmare came true, Kelly & Andrea won the challenge.  Their short ribs will be featured on a Hilton Hotel menu near you.  No worries, I’ll be staying at the Marriott down the street.

Arnold defended his dish, while Lynne, out of nowhere, pointed out all of the negatives.  Did she want to go home?  I was super sad to see that Arnold got eliminated but could not care less that Lynne also got sent packing.

Quotes of the Week

“In this competition, it’s not how you start, it’s how you finish.”-Timothy (now do something with that!)

“I won 10,000 smackaroos!  How you doin?”-Tamesha

“Then they might think I’m more than a Louis Vuitton bag.”-Arnold

“Tamesha is very sexy.”-Angelo



Arnold—I’ll miss ya, buddy!

Kenny (mostly because I hate Angelo)






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