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Top Chef Boston Episode 7: Restaurant Wars

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At the end of the last episode the previews said, “later this season…”  I thought for sure that the show would be taking a break for a few weeks.   And this week’s episode was their annual restaurant wars which, based on previous years, has occurred in the 9th or 10th week.

I’ll still recap this week’s episode in this post but, since I wasn’t prepared to write a new introduction to this week’s episode, here’s what I wrote about Restaurant Wars from last year:

– Talent doesn’t always lead to a win.  Strong leadership, teamwork, and people understanding their roles is key.

– I like to think that having a good working team is a lot like the Three Stooges.

– They worked because there was one Moe (the bossy one), one Curly (the charming goofball), and one Larry (the one that’s not noticeable, but does a lot of gruntwork).  And they still were good even when Shemp took Curly’s role as the charming goofball.  He knew his role and he executed.


That formula clearly worked last year for the winning team.  By the way – being caught off-guard with this week’s episode wasn’t a big deal.  It’s not like I actually plan about what I write anyway…


Restaurant Wars

The contestants were split into two teams of four and were serving 100 people.   They had to come up with the concept and menu, as well as decide who was going to be the Executive Chef, and who would manage the front of the house.

The special guest was a very stone-faced Barbara Lynch who said, “You have to be on-point as a team.”   It’s as if she read my post from last year.

Four Pigs

Adam’s Salt-baked clams, ramps, bacon, & sunflower seeds

Mei’s Chicken liver toast with plum puree

Doug’s braised pork shoulder, pickled red onion, & mustard seeds

Melissa’s seared scallops, radish salad, & grapefruit

Mei’s Fried Brussels sprouts with anchovy-olive vinaigrette

Melissa’s buttermilk biscuit cobber, apples, mixed berries & cardamom cream



Katie’s roasted beats, Sri Lankan curry, toasted coconut, & pickled cauliflower

Katsuji’s hamachi sashimi, roasted poblano, blistered tomato, citrus-habanero salsa & garlic chips

Katsjuji’s dry pozole, chili, Dungeness crab & chicharrones

Gregory’s seared haddock, spiced tomato, garam masala, & pickled mushrooms

Gregory’s hoisin-glazed pork tenderloin, bay scallops, broccolini & XO sauce

KeriAnn’s vanilla crepe, burnt banana mousse, macerated cherries with ginger & pistachio

Winning Restaurant – Four Pigs, easily.  The comments were “unified vision, respected each other, worked towards the mission.”   While the losing team didn’t come together as a team.   Sound familiar?

Winner – Doug. For the dish, the concept, and the organization.

Gone – KerriAnn. Disorganized service plus worst dish on the team.


Random Thoughts

– I love it when I’m right.  The winning team was constantly high-fiving and worked together to come up with a cohesive menu.  Dougie was a great Moe, Mei and Melissa were strong Larry’s, and Adam was a perfect Curly.

– The losers didn’t work as a team at all.  Gregory is a superior chef with a lot of experience, he opted to do grunt work.   Katsuji mentioned that he had more than enough time to help out KerriAnn but didn’t because, after all, this is a competition.   Definitely well-played.

– Another reason the Magellan team lost:  Their dishes were inspired by Sri Lanka, Mexico, Japan, and France.  I just looked it up – Magellan  didn’t go to any of those on his famous expeditions.

– Adam’s clams were served on the cleaned shells.   The first batch of shells mysteriously disappeared and there was drama with having to get more.   I fully expected to see Katsuji admit to stealing them.

– I thought Mei’s chicken liver toasts and Melissa’s cobbler were pretty damn amateurish.  Any fool can look at the back of a Betty Crocker box and make cobbler.

– One of the stops they made was to Arhaus for décor.  I’m a big fan of Arhaus, but that’s a pretty weak link to the competition.  There’s no way they bought chairs for the restaurant there because they would’ve blown their budget in about 2 minutes.  I know this because that’s where I got my chairs:



– So far, not surprises in terms of who’s been sent packing.   If the trend continues, it’s bye-bye Katie.



About thefoodandwinehedonist

I don't know everything about the world of food and wine, but I'm not going to let a small detail like that stop me from blogging about it.

4 comments on “Top Chef Boston Episode 7: Restaurant Wars

  1. Pingback: Top Chef Boston Episode 6: The First Thanksgiving | The Food and Wine Hedonist

  2. A Famished Foodie
    December 4, 2014

    Katie definitely needs to go next, then Melissa. After that, I think the other chefs have talent, even if Katsuji is all over the place.

    • thefoodandwinehedonist
      December 4, 2014

      I think itll come down to Gregory, Mei and Katsuji (assuming he stays consistent). Maybe Dougie, but i dobt think his food is upscale and refined enough. Still dont have a feel for Adam…

  3. Pingback: Top Chef Boston Episode 8: Clean-up in Aisle 21 | The Food and Wine Hedonist

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This entry was posted on December 4, 2014 by in Stuff, Television and tagged , , , , , .
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