Top Chef: Colorado episode 9 review: Is this most-controversial elimination yet?

Top Chef: Colorado premiereOver the course of Top Chef: Colorado episode 9, we saw arguably a more heated version of Tom Colicchio than we have all season long. He wasn’t happy with what was served at the Sudden Death Quickfire, and then after that he was downright livid following the Super Bowl tailgating challenge.

There were two eliminations in this episode, but we wanted to start at the end and work our way backwards. We’re not altogether sure why Fatima Ali was sent home over Joe Sasso. Let’s take the emotional component out of it for a moment — we were rooting for Fatima extra-hard because she’s battling cancer in real life following the show and is pretty much an inspiration to every person alive. Speaking only about the competition, Fatima was never in the bottom before Restaurant Wars, and while her service wasn’t deemed great by the judges then, she didn’t exactly cause the team to go home. That was Claudette not tasting food before it was sent out of the kitchen. Meanwhile, this was the third time in the past four weeks Mustache Joe was in the bottom.

Going beyond that, Fatima was told she had one thing that was redeeming about her nachos: The chicken. Meanwhile, Joe was told he had zero things that were redeeming about his fried macaroni and cheese. The logic for keeping him seems to be that he contributed more to the ribs, the other dish on his team that was decent, than Fatima did for Bruce’s steak. Still, we don’t think it was the right move — though obviously we’re not there. Also, it should be clear that we’re not just trying to drag Joe up and down the street. Top Chef is a show where every person is great and we think that there’s a lot of nuance and tiny degrees of separation between people. We’d eat Joe’s food any day, especially that buffalo cauliflower as someone who loves both buffalo sauce and cauliflower as a substitute for other ingredients.

The other Joe falls

It was a rough night for Joe Flamm. One week after winning Restaurant Wars, he fell victim to what has long been called the Top Chef Risotto Curse. So many contestants over the years have gotten in hot water trying to make it and it just feels like too tricky a thing to really execute — and that’s with rice, let alone trying to use cauliflower instead. He lost the Sudden Death Quickfire against Chris and Joe Sasso, and found himself heading to Last Chance Kitchen.

Can we stop now and say that Chris Scott is living his best life right now? He’s a diehard Eagles fan who actually won Super Bowl tickets alongside Carrie during the elimination challenge. He didn’t know at the time that his favorite team would be playing! Now, he gets to be there as they compete for the title against the Patriots. (For the record, go Eagles — not that we love them but they’re definitely better than the alternative.)

CarterMatt Verdict

Top Chef: Colorado episode 9 featured cranky judges for sure, but also really interesting food ideas. Even if not all of it worked we like that there were some risks that were taken from our vantage point. We’re okay with the Joe Flamm elimination; losing Fatima is one we’re about as angry at as Tom was some of that elimination challenge food.

Do you think that the judges made the right choice on Top Chef: Colorado episode 9? Share in the comments! Also, be sure to like CarterMatt on Facebook for some more insight on the series. (Photo: Bravo.)

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