Top Chef

Season 4 Episode 2

Zoo Food

Aired Wednesday 10:00 PM Mar 19, 2008 on Bravo

Episode Fan Reviews (7)

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  • Two great challenges!

    Two great challenges bring out both the best and the worst in all of people. As they must do the thing called zoo food. Spike really I must confess, one lazy and obnoxious chef. As I thought that he should had gone first. Really he is not a team player and lets his team down. While the others are doing their stuff, Spike is doing nothing. The guy is nothing but a busybody. Valerie is sent home. Don't know why she got annoyed with Antonia as the latter claimed to have tasted every other food. It will only go from hard to harder in the next few weeks!
  • the quickfire takes place the farmer's market at the zoo and the elimination challenge continues the zoo theme as the teams are divided into groups according to zoo animals

    i liked this was really inventive and as always most of the food looked good enough to eat..i liked the quickfire..those dishes looked so delicious..some of them more than others but it all l,ooked good..i just disagree w/ who won the quickfire..i did love the elimination challenge..i would have had trouble coming with an idea for my animal but i think everyone did pretty well..the ice berg one (penguin) would have to be my perfect..i loved that idea..i wanted to eat that so bad..i liked the penguin table the best..the gorilla did not look that great to me so i totally agreed with the judges decision on this one
  • The chefs have to take the diets of a handful of animals and invent dishes for a cocktail party.

    I love the series because you see people who claim to be extremely good cooks do extremely stupid things. Valerie made the same mistake that chefs have made since the first season, she made a dish that she admitted must be made to order, will not travel well and then used odd-ball flavors that in no way complemented each other.
    Nikki, Dale and Spike if you won't eat it, why would you put it out and let others eat it especially when your chance of getting kicked off the show is so great if your dish fails. Those mushrooms looked terrible, sounded disgusting and Nikki - cheese is not a garnish it is an ingredient.
  • Two great challenges and some great examples of cooking from the cheftestants.

    The Quickfire Challenge for this episode was very simple: make a dish using only five ingredients, besides some basic spices that they were allowed to not count as one of their ingredients. While one of the chefs included one more ingredient than he should have, the winning chef actually forgot one of his ingredients and still proved that he had the skill to pull off a great dish with minimal supplies. It was nice to see the chefs presented with a challenge that really made them think, and also that demonstrated that less is sometimes better than more.

    The Elimination Challenge was equally creative and also fun. Each group was presented with a list of ingredients from the diet of a certain animal and asked to cater a party with a menu based around the ingredients on the list. The majority of the teams stepped up to the challenge, although the winning team clearly set a standard that was above the rest. The losing dish was, I think, undisputed in this case. Blinis are not a food that can be transported (I've made them before, and not only are they hard to make, but we had to make them for a four hour or so event, so they had to be made on site), and the ingredients listed just didn't sound appetizing, especially since most of them are bland, and since a blini itself is already bland and more accentuated by the topping they have (traditionally caviar or smoked salmon, which have very strong flavors), it is plain to see why this didn't work. One of the guests at the party even said it tasted like dirt. It doesn't get much worse than that.
  • Cute Challenge.

    Well, in this episode the possible final contestants and obvious people who are not going to be final contestants start to show. As far as the females go, there not showing much right now. One of the lesbians is my favorite for right now, but nothing magical has happen yet. I really don't think Nikki is going to make it to the end, but I'm rooting for Stephanie also. As for the men, Richard, Andrew, and the Australian are still my favorites. Spike or Dale could also come forth and do something special but I don't think Eric will make it till the end. Good show....
  • The Zoo Challange

    While preparing for the quick fire challange, Mark was so busy trying to rush that he left his bag. I was like "oh no", but thats kinda what he gets for rushing. But even after all of that, he still won the quick fire challange which I was happy about. Good for him, that means he is a really good cook. Dale was getting on my nerves with the "I wanna do my own thing" mentality. They were only given $500, to shop for a party catering 200 people. that to me didn't seem like a lot of money for all those people. And they had to do all that shopping in thirty minutes. I have a hard enough time shoping for two people in thirty minutes. Andrew is funny to me, he makes me laugh. He may be my favorite at this point. He won the challange at the end and I was so happy. Nikki's mushrooms was a pretty bad choice and they should not have served them. Dale piling on the cheese on top made it even worse, and who doesn't tast the food before serving it. A big no no!
  • The remaining contestants have an interesting quickfire and a surprise elimination challenge. The quality of cooking is improving, guess some of the jitters are gone.

    For the quickfire they were taken to an open air market and told they could make any dish but could only use 5 ingredients, plus a minimal assortment of items from the Top Chef kitchen. There was a lot of scurrying around but one of the chefs bought quickly and relaxed to enjoy the sights and sounds. We all need to do that.
    As they were getting ready to leave one of them forgot to pick up some lettuce he bought and when he got back to the kitchen had to improvise. Some of the dishes were quite good, one chef could not count to 5, but all in all most of the dishes were Top Chef worthy.
    Then we come to the elimination challenge they were split into 5 teams. The way it started they were thinking what are we going to do cook Bears, Penquins, Vultures and the like, but when it was explained they were going to make items for a party using the foods these animals ate. I was impressed with some of the dishes, especially when the winning team made a dish with an anchovy that most people liked, trust me, say the word anchovy and most people turn their noses, myself included.
    But some of them made some silly mistakes and I thought the team with the mushroom dish deserved to have one or both of the chefs go home. Adding ingredients to a dish and not tasting it is just not worthy of even a line cook, but a Top Chef, not even close.