Balance, balance, balance: One of the most interesting aspects of last night's episode was getting to hear the critiques of talented chefs like David Chang, who judged the elimination challenge. It became clear that having a balance of flavors in a dish is vital to him. Unfortunately, Fabio's Team Green made a lamb dish with overwhelming herbal flavors, placing them in the bottom, along with Team Red and their lamb carpaccio, which Chang also dinged for being off-balance, saying the parsley and cheese overpowered the meat.
New York's finest: For the Elimination Challenge, each team was assigned a different award-winning restaurant in New York City: David Chang's Ma Peche, David Burke Townhouse, Marea and WD-50. After eating a meal at the restaurant, each chef had to come up with a dish that would be at home on that restaurant's menu. It was the luck of the draw for the chefs, with someone like Angelo feeling right at home cooking his Asian fusion food at the Asian fusion Ma Peche, while Fabio struggled to incorporate Asian ingredients into his rustic Italian cuisine. Homemade ricotta and hoisin sauce? No thanks.
Inspired by Wylie: Dale T., knowing that chef Wylie Dufresne loves eggs, made the smart choice to prepare a flawless egg dish, but in his own style, forgoing the fancy gadgets in the WD-50 kitchen for a more straightforward preparation. His sunny-side up egg dumpling with pork belly and milk ramen was the one dish of the episode we wanted to eat immediately, especially when Tom Colicchio described the broth as smelling like buttered toast. So intriguing! We were happy to see Dale take home the win for this dish.
"Is there a reset button on the Vita-Prep?": Dapper Stephen, who seems to have struggled in the kitchen since day one, was excited about the prospect of cooking fine Italian food at Marea. Because he loves fine dining. And fashion. But not even his expertly-knotted ties could rescue his salmon doused in fennel pollen, which Anthony Bourdain said tasted "like a head shop." Stephen was sent packing along with Dale L., who made an overly sweet, overly complicated veal dish with popcorn, peanuts and French toast. Enough said.
Were you rooting for either Stephen or Dale L.? What did you think of last night's episode?