No cheese curd for you
Top chefs flub and artisanal challenge flops on Top Chef Seattle
They could've called episode 5 of Top Chef Seattle "The Foodie Edition," with its focus on produce, farmers markets and artisanally made goods.
So how ironic that, on this artisan-centric week of all weeks, the dishes are so bad, the judges decide that none deserves to win. Not one chef is able to take the raw materials made by little artisan elf hands and turn them into a worthy dish.
"We're not going to award a win at all," head judge Tom Colicchio says crankily. "The $10,000 is off the table."
You hear that? $10,000, off the table. Take that, unimaginative chefs. Then again, what are you going to do with cheese curds, pickles, rose water jelly or candied salmon? Seattle may have fab-u-lous artisans, but those ingredients don't make for good improvisation.
Further ramping up the difficulty, this is a team week. And arch enemies Josh Valentine and John Tesar get stuck with each other.
Further ramping up the difficulty, this is a team week, and some teams face bigger obstacles than others. Eliza battles Josie's ego. Tyler deals with CJ's over-inflated self-worth. And arch enemies Josh Valentine and John Tesar get stuck with each other.
"I would have preferred to be on anyone's team besides John," Josh says.
But the two Dallas chefs steel themselves and make it through the challenges without drawing their knives. In fact, their mini-taco quickfire entry is the second-best favorite.
"I think me and John worked really well together," Josh says. "We put our differences aside and put out a good dish."
But on the elimination challenge, getting along great proves to be their downfall. They're so nervous about setting the other off that they tiptoe around, instead of calling out each other's mistakes. Josh thinks John's grits are too thick, and John thinks Josh botches the cooking of the pork.
But sssshhh, not a word is said.
Lucky for them, their pork and grits aren't as bad as CJ's burger, served on a crumpet that disintegrates. CJ and Tyler are sent home – but not before arrogant CJ asks the judges to defend the dessert made by Lizzie and Danyele McPherson, which CJ thinks is far worse than his burger. This is CJ's problem: He views himself as being on the same level as the judges when he's really just a B-grade contestant.