In all of our years watching “Top Chef” over the years, there has never been a Restaurant Wars quite like this. This was ugly. While one of the teams was not necessarily perfect, the other was just a car crash. Typically, we at least feel like the editors do a good job trying to present things as competitive.
“Fin” – This was the kitchen with Nicholas Elmi front and center, and he did a heck of a job with it. He was cool as a cucumber, had a great seafood concept, and delivered a great dish himself despite having to also expedite. Travis was also the perfect guy to run the front of the house; he was kind, attentive, and careful that the expectations were big. (As a slight aside, how annoying is it that “Top Chef” has now decided that they want to monetize diners? Seriously? This is annoying in ways in which we cannot even begin to describe here.)
“Found’ – This name was ridiculously hipster for one, and the best thing about their restaurant was their menus. Executive chef Justin Devillier was rude and obnoxious, there was no control in the kitchen, Sara Johannes was all over the place in the front of the house, and she didn’t even manage to do basic things like explain the dishes to the customers. Nobody was having a good time, while the crew at Fin could have sat down and sang campfire songs to each other in the middle of service.
It was absolutely brutal in one way to watch the folks from “Found” completely suffer their way through the judges’ table beatdown that we knew was coming … but it was great television to watch Justin and Sara sit there and play the blame game. In the end, there were two things that we took from this: Justin’s attitude from the beginning was off, and Sara had no business ever being in the front of the house. Typically on Restaurant Wars, you always sent home the losing executive chef. But when you had someone in Sara who failed every little aspect of the night, it felt like there was no other decision to make here. Plus, Justin had been fairly solid for most of the competition.
Sara’s exit was the right move. It almost felt like she had already checked out. She does have “Last Chance Kitchen” still to compete in. As for us, we’re just grateful for this fantastic hour of TV. Grade: A-.
Do you think that the right person paid the price for this “Found” catastrophe? Share your thoughts below, and click here if you do want to read some more news related to “Top Chef.” We’ll have a full review of tonight’s “Last Chance Kitchen” at that link as well.