Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Trimming the Fat: Top Chef Canada episode 5

“Justice,” proclaimed ousted Top Chef competitor Rebekah Pearse on her Facebook page when Jamie Hertz was eliminated after episode 5. Chef Pearse felt that Hertz had a worse dish than her when she was eliminated on episode 2 of the series. We are glad to see Hertz leave because the gecked out Chef was giving us nerds a bad name.  Based on his audition video we also think he cheats at golf.

During the Top Chef Canada live blogging sessions Chef Hertz carried himself with dignity and poise calling fellow competitor Darryl Crumb "douchebag, winer, schmuck," and a few other things that seem to have been vetted from the archives. Sure, Chris Kanka does the cocky, a-hole shtick but he comes across as hammy and humorous. Since this is Top Chef Canada you have no doubt noticed Canuck politeness in the kitchen with one notable exception. In episode 3, Hertz accused Crumb of stealing his sour cream.

Episode 5 was the most intense episode of Top Chef Canada to date. This must have something to do with the fact that there are less Chefs in the competition and people have their eye on the prize. Speaking of trimming the fat, the Quick Fire challenge featured the Chefs butchering talents. As predicted, Connie De Sousa was the star. In the episode Chef De Sousa was introduced as being able to butcher a pig's head in less than 4 minutes, she must be a blast at parties. Todd Perrin gave her the moniker "bacon ninja.” Judge Shereen Arazam live blogged that De Sousa was the "butcher ballerina." We thought the challenge looked like an episode of the Sopranos.

Next on Top Chef
Since we are on the topic of butchery, we are not talking about the show's editing that is often blamed for misinterpreting people on reality shows, but the creation of The Butchers Guild. The Guild is founded by Marissa Guggiana, author of Primal Cuts: Cooking with America's Best Butchers and Tia Harrison, Executive Chef and co-owner of Sociale and co-owner of Avedano's Holly Park Market. The website is intended to become the social hub for butchers and other butchery related subjects. Some instructional videos are on the horizon and different levels of membership for the lay community. We also love the clothing line.
Top Chef Canada Butcher Challenge

Hertz has been a bit of a bottom feeder during the competition because he was practically in the bottom after every elimination challenge. His roulade, from episode 1, was almost comedic in appearance. The next day Hertz protested to Judge Mark McEwan on Twitter and criticized Chef Bocking's dish. During the inaugural episode Chef Hertz also blamed his partner Darryl Crumb for his failure. It was no surprise that Hertz blamed his student Sous-Chef for breaking his concentration in episode 5. All we can say is that Top Chef might be about cooking skills but there is something to be said for people skills in the kitchen and Chef Hertz seems to be lacking in this area.
Our only question after Chef Hertz's departure is who will be Canada's next Top Chef villain?

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