Top Chef is heading south.
EW can exclusively reveal that season 14 of Bravo’s culinary competition will take place in Charleston, South Carolina.
WARNING: The following contains spoilers from Thursday’s finale of Top Chef … obviously.
After a very exciting showdown last week, Jeremy emerged victorious and Amar made a blazing comeback from Last Chance Kitchen. (Am I the only one who felt a tiny bit bad for Jason, winning for so long only to lose LCK so late in the game?) Now that they were the final two, Amar and Jeremy sized each other up over a game of pool, with Amar noting that Jeremy tends to go a little crazy under pressure.
How do you accurately choose which two chefs should advance to the finale of Top Chef when the choices are just so damn good? Apparently with a little dose of luck and magic.
Thursday night’s penultimate episode featured the chefs receiving a crash course in infusing magic into their cooking, courtesy of David Copperfield (and featuring some incredible product placement for his Las Vegas magic show), and an elimination round which put those teachings to the test in order to secure a spot in next week’s finale.
If there’s one enduring mystery about Top Chef, it’s how does Padma Lakshmi, the show’s host and executive producer, stay so slender?
Let’s all join the remaining chefs in reeling from Kwame’s elimination. I guess it shouldn’t have been too surprising — he started to falter several episodes before his demise, but Kwame the “prodigy” had one of the most impressive early runs I’ve seen on Top Chef. He’s not coming back, either, since Jason continued his reign on Last Chance Kitchen last week, but there’s no doubt Kwame is a better chef than he is a rapper.
Karen, who always wanted to cook Asian even when a challenge didn’t call for it, must have been thinking, “ARE YOU KIDDING ME?” when she saw that the first Quickfire Challenge without her would be a wok challenge. Martin Yan of Yan Can Cook, the PBS show that taught me so much about Asian foods when I was a kid, was on hand to guest judge the Quickfire Challenge, which had the chefs creating the perfect chop suey using woks and incredibly high temperatures.
On a cooking show that has featured Pee-wee Herman, Charlize Theron channeling an evil queen, and a hipsterific lunch with Zooey Deschanel, MC Hammer must be the most random celebrity guest judge Top Chef has ever had. Still, it was fun to see the man responsible for the hits that played at the roller skating rinks of my childhood sans entourage and sans Hammer Pants. He looked good.
Too much Restaurant Wars is too much of a good thing. We really didn’t need a lunch episode and then a dinner episode — it felt like all those times my dad made my family go to Old Country Buffet at 3 p.m. so we could have Sunday lunch AND dinner in one sitting. There was always indigestion and always an ill-conceived plate of Jell-O touching Boston crab salad touching macaroni and cheese touching a random spoonful of jalapenos. Goodness, that’s the taste of home.
Isaac the bayou chef got the hero edit this episode; the gruff, non-fine-dining chef proved to be a feminist, an ace expeditor, and the anti-bro. He got so much screentime I started worrying that our intrepid banannaise inventor might be getting eliminated at the end of Restaurant Wars.
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