Top Chef All-Stars Season 8, Episode 12 Recap: Ferry, Family, and For Serious?
Only one step away from the finals, yo! Our episode begins with Blais lamenting about the loss of Dale which must mean Fabio is off his short list to Barbados. Note to Blais: One bromance at a time please, playa.
Anyone seen the Doritos?
Back at the house, the cheftestants are wondering what will happen next when Antonia wonders aloud if Padma will show up and then OMG IT'S PADMA!!! which would be awesome if the power to produce Padma at will was real, but alas, it's just the predictability of Bravo. Good ol' Bravo.
Padma takes the cheftestants up to the roof just so she can point across the bay and tell them they will take a ferry to Ellis Island to meet her and a guest judge. Note to Padma: No more roof talks unless you are going to fly away in a jet pack, then call us, seriously.
In the galley of the ferry, the chefs find a note that their challenge is to make a dish from whatever they can find in the ship's "kitchen" which is basically a floating Circle K without the gas pumps, cigarettes, and people using their winning scratch-off tickets to buy more scratch-off tickets. Oh, and there's nothing at stake here either, so knock yourselves out -- or don't -- either way it doesn't matter. Whee.
Spoiler alerts ahead, haters!
Everyone is cooking with whatever crap they can find and hatin' on each other for real. Blais makes fun of Carla's sliced orange salad and Mike insults Tiffany's nachos while at the same time admitting he wouldn't serve his bread soup of hot dog buns and sour cream to his cat. Note to Mike's cat: Meow, meow, meow. (translation: consider yourself lucky, kitty, it looks like vomit.)
Wait, why are we doing this Quickfire?
As they come ashore, in walks Padma with guest judge Dan Barber, chef, James Beard award winner, and sustainable food advocate. Note to Dan: Fine print, Baby. Read it next time. Now taste this processed crap that's been microwaved to death and make a decision on who's going to win this nothing-at-stake challenge.
Congratulations, Carla. Your reward for winning the lamest Quickfire ever is nothing. Please pass the Funyuns.
For the elimination challenge, the cheftestants have to create a dish based on their ancestry (Ellis Island, yo!). Bravo has hired a genealogist to put together each chef's lineage and has brought in a family member for each to help with the results. Tiffany, Antonia, and Mike's moms make the scene as does Carla's hubby and a prego Mrs. Blais who Richard kisses non-stop until the sound of their lips sucking on one another is as stomach-churning as the ferry boat Quickfire. Cue crying and smooching sounds, and ew.
In a segment akin to watching other people's family movies until the end of time, we hear about each chef's family background and somehow are made to believe that Antonia and Mike are cousins. Note to Mike and Antonia: Not buying it. Antonia says no one could come close to writing a scenario like she and Mike finding out they're related. Note to Antonia: Yes they can, and they did. It's called Star Wars. Now please mop up these giant puddles of boredom drool before the Tusken Raiders arrive.
Five-year-old Mike equals awesome.
The judges arrive sans Anthony Bourdain (shocking) and sit with the family members which results in a compliment stroke-fest worthy of serious eye rolling save for finding out Carla met her husband through Match.com (sponsorship coin, yo!) At one point, Antonia's mom asks Gail if five people have ever gone to the finals and in that super-predictable Bravo moment, we are beaten over the head repeatedly with foreshadowing. Goddammit, Bravo.
Here's to everyone!
All five chefs go to judges' table for more strokefest fun. We love you. We love your food. Tom loves okra now, Gail loves Carla for using liquid nitrogen in her dish, and everyone is crying (on the inside) along with Mike (who is crying on the outside) for his Grandma's gnocchi.
We have no idea -- hee, hee!
Antonia takes the win and the Toyota Highlander hybrid for her risotto. Please pack your bags and head for the...BAHAMAS!!!
A horribly overdubbed voice of Tom tells Mike that he is safe...safe to GO TO THE BAHAMAS!!!
Padma freaks Blais out by telling him to pack his knives...FOR THE BAHAMAS!!!
Carla and Tiffany...BAHAMAS!!! BAHAMAS!!! BAHAMAS!!!
That's it. Everyone wins. Note to the judges: thanks for wasting our time and extending this episode for fifteen forgettable minutes for a mean-nothing Quickfire and a no-decision. Fuck you. Get me
Next Week: Padma in a bikini! A firetruck! Blaise with a beardling! Padma in a bikini!