Your Weekly Libation and some Top Chef thoughts

If you’re like me, you get into routines. And one of the routine-producing services that Chew on That has to offer is Your Weekly Libation. Now, I know what you’re thinking: “But wait, you’re not Jim! Where’s Jim? It’s not the Weekly Libation without Jim!” Yes, you’re right, I’m not Jim, but bear with me while I try to be for just a moment so that Your Weekly Libation is still delivered. I’m doing YOU a favor since Jim couldn’t be here today (yea jury duty!) We wouldn’t want to mess up your routine.

So today I’m recommending the very prestigious Academy Cocktail, a lighter drink with remarkable cranberry and orange flavors. But honestly, it’s really just about the name. I mean, how smart would you feel serving this drink?
“What did they serve at the party?”
“This drink called the Academy Cocktail”
“Oooh…how intriguing!”

That’s right. All you have to do is say the name over and over to your guests, and no one will question you. Go get ‘em folks.

Now, on to something that’s more my forte: Top Chef.

I’ve finally caught up. Believe it or not, my Wednesday nights have found themselves taken up by plans that don’t involve sitting in front of the television (or well, holi days) and I’ve had quite a bit of catching up to do.

So I see now we’re left with Casey, Hung, and Dale.

Finale Part 1 left us bidding farewell to Brian, after a mediocre speech on why he should stay in the running. It was clear that everyone else’s speeches were much more heartfelt, but honestly I felt bad for the guy because in the harsh circumstances that are “Judge’s Table,” I’d probably choke up and say something stupid too.

On to the remaining contestants, I think the Amateur Gourmet said it best when he said “Holy Dale!” I honestly never thought he would make it this far, let alone win the elimination challenge of Finale Part 1. Since he’s from Chicago, I’d say I’m proud but I know that wouldn’t be genuinely accepted because I’ve had such mixed feelings for him the whole season. I’m starting to like him though because he edited himself very well this past episode.

On Casey, I think we have a winner here. Ever since the culinary bee quickfire challenge, I’ve thought Casey kicked ass. Not only does she know her stuff (coq au vin semantics debate aside – there is evidence in her favor), like renowned guest judge Chef Eric Ripert said, she’s got soul in her cooking. She takes a lot of inspiration from her grandmother, which in her case has made up for a lack of classical training. And, she’ll always lend a helping hand to her other chefs. What more do you need in a Top Chef?

And Hung, well, he’s quite the character, isn’t he? Lately he’s brought out the “family” card a lot too, but in his case, it seems so contrived. As Tom Colicchio said, he’s definitely the best technical chef, but have we seen who Hung really is? I don’t think so. But I know he’ll put up a good fight in the finale; he won’t go down quietly. I won’t be too bothered if he wins the whole thing, because boy can he chop up a chicken, but if it’s about the whole package – team player, etc. – I don’t personally think he has it.

Let the throwdown begin. Anyone know where in Chicago the live reveal is happening Wednesday?

-Hillary, off to a very laidback weekend
Editor, Recipe4Living

  • chip_wilson

    nicely done Hilary….but I do miss jim

    he always has such entertaining defenses to his girly tastes in drinks

  • Sandra

    Casey is “nice”, but for Pete’s sake, she can’t chop onions! Her cooking has been mediocre up until her Grandma’s dish. And is she chef in real life?

    Dale has had such mixed reviews – wasn’t “inedible” assigned to one if his dishes?

    Of the three, Hung is absolutely the best, both technically and it sounds like taste-wise. I don’t like his style (is he acting like this for TV?), but at whose restaurant would I jump at the chance to eat? Hungs.

  • Hillary

    Chip – Fine then, I’ll leave it to Jim! Haha.

    Sandra – Interesting thoughts, and to each his own! I do contend that I will not be surprised if Hung wins, but I want Casey to win! Hehe. Thanks for the comment.

  • Jim

    Sandra, I read an article recently in which Hung claims he’s playing up his bad boy image for the camera…I believe it, given that this is Reality TV and every reality TV show needs a villain.

    Hillary, don’t speak to soon–the people may need me again, and when they do, we’ll need someone to drink alcohol in my stead!

  • Hillary

    Jeez Jim, Top Chef is no regular reality TV show!

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