Hey there gang! ready for another Top Chef viewing party? No costume is required — just a TV, a computing device and your sparkling wit! Although you can connect your eyebrows with magic marker to create a "Hughnibrow" costume if you like. What you do in your own home is up to you!
Here's how this chat party works, if you haven't joined us before: Just tune in to tonight's episode — which airs at 10 Eastern on Bravo (and is also simultaneously streamed online) — and use the comments section below this post to share your real-time insights while you watch. To give you an idea just how humorous such insights can be, I've collected a few of my favorite comments from our last open thread in this separate post.
To jumpstart tonight's discussion, I've posted a little conversation piece below: It's a numerical ranking of how well all the chefs have performed so far this season, which I modestly call the FreyScore, because I invented it. I'd tell you the formula I used, but I can't, because it's super-secret and proprietary. Oh, fuck it, here it is: Each chef gets 3 points for every elimination challenge solo victory, 2 points for each quickfire win, 1 point for each top three finish, -1 point for each bottom three finish, and -3 points for getting eliminated. I add that all up and divide by the number of episodes they competed on, and voila: FreyScore! Here are the results so far:
- Gregory Gourdet: 1.67
- Katsuji Tanabe: 0.83
- Mei Lin: 0.66
- Katie Weinner: 0.50
- Doug Adams: 0.33
- Adam Harvey: 0.17
- Keriann Von Raesfeld: -0.17
- Melissa King: -0.33
- James Rigato: -0.25 *
- Aaron Grissom: -0.40 *
- Rebecca LaMalfa: -0.50 *
- Stacy Cogswell: -0.83 *
- Ron Eyester: -1.30 *
- Joy Crump: -3.0 *
- Michael Patlazhan: -3.0 *
- George Pagonas: -3.0 *
(* eliminated from competition)
The main thing that jumps out right away is just how dominant Gregory has been so far. His super-high score is based on the fact that he's had six top-three finishes this season, and has been the solo victor of three elimination or quickfire challenges. Can anyone stop "Tall Urkel"? Answer: Of course not. He's obviously going to win the season. But for the rest of the pack, there's still a real horse race going on: Who will finish in second place? The suspense is almost unbearable!
On to tonight's episode ... Here a bit of what's in store:
- We've reached the ever-popular "Restaurant Wars" episode, in which the chefs bludgeon each other using kitchen utensils as weapons as they try to cook. Well, that's how it should work … in reality, it's just a team challenge with menus. But we all seem to get super-excited about it every season, for some reason.
- One team will name its eatery "Magellan" ... which seems like a good name for a restaurant, until you consider that Ferdinand Magellan was killed and eaten by cannibals. (Maybe.)
- Adam Harvey's clam dish will go mysteriously missing from the kitchen. Clams are the new pea puree!
- Tom will say of one food item: "you could play hockey with this thing" – which is something you probably don't want to hear Tom in your restaurant during Restaurant Wars (unless you served him one of these).
OK, time to get this party started. I'll see you down in the comments!