Jumping around Top Chef a little lately for the first time as I had never watched it. I began watching it for two reasons, but one of them was after reading a new article about Chef Nina Compton ( See here Chef Nina Compton )
Her season (11) of Top Chef took place in New Orleans (with some at the end in Hawaii) and she is from St. Lucia so all of that interested me. I have also been on a huge kick from San Antonio to Florida on women chef’s and women owned and run restaurants. I had been to both her first and her newest restaurant in New Orleans. So…I watched the season 11 Top Chef.
Joe comes home and with him and with an upcoming project and being on the restaurant kick and he and I being total foodies (we travel for food but as example our Sunday was a bite shared and a drink at several restaurants, creating our own little through town tour. Before that in another city. In one weekend we’ve done two cities. One being New Orleans, all tying into the Top Chef watching. I had already previously mapped out the majority of our little tour myself but a few extra got added in. That food truck, though…..
Mostly drink wise we judged on Old Fashioned and French75’s. Let. Me. Tell. You just how BAD a bartender can be…and just how amazing. There was a patron margarita in there as well that I will admit, as a come from Texas gal, was the best done drink I’d ever lay on my taste buds. I don’t even like margaritas much.
This is how we travel. Usually not as much on the drinks as this weekend but we felt like remembering that we were grown ups. We enjoyed our time and ate and drank a lot of water and meandered slowly. And we truly enjoyed some classic drinks and a lot of judging because we are very judge people. We enjoyed at each place good bartender conversations as bonus…or bad like their obviously don’t know what a French75 even is kind.
Funny enough…the personality usually matched their drink ability.
So…anyway…all about Top chef these days. Nina is awesome….how the heck a chef who had to be told he had no salt on EVER single dish, and turned out TERRIBLE dishes on several attempts won over her I just don’t understand. But the woman moved to New Orleans (from Florida at the time where she was chef) and opened her very own beautiful restaurant. And since then…a second as well more recently. She ain’t no small deal and maybe the title of Top Chef wasn’t won by TV reality but it was certainly won by peoples hearts and palettes and I can understand why by both show, meeting her, and tasting everything on her menu’s.
With Joe home I decided to jump to watch the Charleston season (season 14) but it was SO bad that we had to switch and try another season. NOLA S11 had been produced SO well and the show as a first really sold me on the TV show altogether. Charleston would have ruined it full stop had it been first. It was just poorly produced to tears of boredom and lack of clarity, a badly put together team (although I was excited for Shirley back from season 11). I will likely discuss that in more detail later.
So, I jumped to Season 10, the episodes prior to the one I had enjoyed so much. And…better than Charleston. Not as better as New Orleans for sure. Even down to I see clearly when and where Padma (love her) really finally gets a real and good stylist (from hair to makeup to clothes finally) to the team working a bit better together and more. However…still more out of kitchen drama than in and frankly…I ain’t here to watch a soap opera. The production on season 10 is much better than season 14 but still pretty terrible and not clear on what some of the challenges even are or the end product of the food (both parts of which season 14 truly failed on greatly) and where New Orleans season 11 was VERY god on. My full props go to production, stylists, team, chef’s, and every detail of season 11. Even Judges discussion, played out challenges where all so well done and kept a person from boredom.
I still can’t get over the obvious stylists changes you can tell for Padma…like my bartenders and a French75…some people had it…some did not. Greatly. Did. Not.
Still watching season 10 now and soon I look forward to trying the after my favorite season 11 and jumping to 12 and see how that one goes. Then I am looking forward to watching the Kentucky season happening as we speak. I will totally have to watch Miami (s4) and of course, Texas (s9) if I don’t watch the entire catch up of it all. I don’t know, as much as I’d love to finish a Charleston season, if I can make myself finish S14 at all. I ask #BRAVO for a redo.
Also…throw out there real quickly…I LOVE chef’s Table but also my newest start on Salt Fat Acid Heat two eps in and I am swooning.