Top Chef DC, errr Singapore

“Top Chef DC” is rolling right along, and last night the remaining five chef-testants became the Final Four. But they’re not going to finish this thing in DC, they are crossing the Atlantic (or Pacific) to Singapore, a country that has become a mecca for foodies.

But first, there would be an elimination, and before that, a quick fire. This week’s quick fire was a wine pairing challenge, with Dana Lovin from Food & Wine Magazine being the guest judge. Tiffany paired a Shiraz with beef tenderloin and a risotto; Kevin was going to make braised pork belly, but it wasn’t cooking fast enough in the pressure cooker, so he changed it up to quail–not exactly something that goes with red wine; Angelo made a foie gras; Kelly a wild boar tenderloin with blue cheese foam; and Ed a grilled ribeye with mushroom ragu to go with a deep red wine.

Dana’s least favorites were Kevin (big duh) and Kelly, because the blue cheese overpowered everything else. Her favorites were Angelo and Tiffany, and Angelo was declared the winner. For his prize, he won a trip to London.

Then they announced the shift to Singapore, and also that the winner of the elimination challenge would be taking home a brand new Toyota Avalon. Then they took them to NASA, where they had a message from astronauts at a space station–they would have to create a dish that was both delicious and easy to freeze dry for space consumption. Not an easy challenge whatsoever. Diners that evening would include astronauts, one of whom was Buzz Aldrin, who was among the first men to walk on the moon. The guest judge this week was the snarky Anthony Bourdain.

Kelly and Tiffany each made halibut, Kelly going for a French vibe and Tiffany a more Far East/curry vibe. Kevin played it a bit safe with sirloin steak. but said he wanted the astronauts to have something that reminded them of home. Ed made rack of lamb, which seemed ambitious for space travel; and Angelo made short ribs with sweet sauce and pea puree.

This time, the judges pretty much loved every dish, while finding subtle things to complain about. Tom Colicchio commented that Tiffany should have taken the skins off of her roasted peppers. Anthony Bourdain thought Kevin played it too safe for Top Chef with sirloin. And Eric Ripert thought that Ed had way too much going on on his plate. They all loved Angelo’s dish, especially Padma and Eric, but the astronauts had said that freeze dried food can’t be too sweet.

The winner of the challenge, the car, and a free pass to Singapore….Angelo. He seems to be coming alive again just at the right time, but man, is he every annoying. I bet Kenny is watching at home gritting his teeth.

So it was down to Kevin, Kelly, Ed and Tiffany. Tom had mentioned that there wasn’t much difference separating the best from the worst last night, but that someone had to go home…and that person was….Tiffany. She had won quite a few challenges and was really coming into her own, but I think those peppers got her sent home last night.

And now, the Final Four–Ed, Kevin, Kelly and Angelo. I think Kevin will be next to go home, creating a season finale of Angelo, Ed and Kelly. That will be an awesome cage match. What do you think? Let me know in the space below and see you back here next week…

  

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