Tuesday, March 9, 2010

The Asshat Man Cometh

A little bird whispered in my digital ear this past Sunday. "Watch Iron Chef" I wasn't sure why but the Bird has never steered me wrong. Iron Chef usually isn't on my TV watching radar screen, it just doesn't interest me like the drama and passion of Top Chef does. Don't get me wrong, I'm well aware of the fame whore aspects of both shows it's just that Alton Brown annoys the hell out of me and there's really no surprise that secret ingredient is 9 times out of 10 made into ice cream whether it be mangoes or bone marrow. So I wondered what the little bird was trying to tell me? My jaw dropped as I realized who the challenger was. Yes, it was someone who wanted to called by only one name much like Prince or Madonna but that one name he goes by here at the Karmic Kitchen is...Hard to believe but Spike Mendelsohn was the night's challenger of Battle Prosciutto against Micheal Symon. And that, my little Top Chef Crack Monkeys, is when Iron Chef America became dead to me. They've had some kick ass challenger's in the past (José Andrés, Traci Des Jardins, Homaro Cantu, not to mention a whole raft of chefs who either guest judge on Top Chef or compete on Top Chef Masters) but this has to be a new low point. He wasn't even a finalist in his season of Top Chef Chicago. So why Iron Chef America? Can an Asshat change? Would he become the Frozen Scallop Comeback King? Has time taught him to leave his Asshatery ways behind?

Survey Says............

NO! All he's learned how to do is to add pieces of Flair to his asshat. (Note to Spike, you've still a ways to go to get to your 15 pieces...). Still maybe Asshat would surprise us with his food? Maybe a prosciutto soup?
Maraschino cherry prosciutto soup? Or maybe something with truffles?Chef Symon loves the idea of fresh truffles.......but Asshat's use of the canned truffles leaves Iron Chef Symon a bit incredulous.

Despite an hour worth of time and two sous chefs, Asshat's main focus seems to be a play on this classic ham preparation.
Yeah, I'm not impressed either. "Sweet on Sweet" is how one judge described it leaving me to believe that Asshat is still pretty much all ass and not much else going on with his palate or imagination. He didn't even attempt a dessert. I won't go into details because all you need to know is that Chef Symon SMOKED Spike right out of Kitchen Stadium.Sadder still was that score came from 3 unknown, first timer judges. As a casual observer of Iron Chef America I know that scoring is usually close, a spread of maybe two or three points. At the most maybe 5. But TEN? The only thing that would have made this moment even more warm and fuzzy (and watchable) for me was if Jeffrey Steingarten had been judging. If anyone could put an Asshat in his place, it would be Jeffrey. But maybe it's all right, maybe the Food Network is where Spike belongs...perhaps helping Paula Deen massage two pounds of butter into every crack and crevice of every dish she makes...or maybe assisting Sandra Lee with her tablescapes. While the title Top Chef or Iron Chef may never grace Spike's culinary resume, he will always be able to fly his Asshat flag proudly where ever he goes. Just let it be on a channel not in my cable package.


Making Space said...

Haha my fave hat pic of him is still the backwards baseball cap one that you, err, edited.

So ham with canned pineapple and marschino cherries. I could totally do that.

Zowie of a zinger there at the end. It seems to call for a resounding and heartfelt AH-MEEEENNNN.

Buzz Kill said...

With the olympics on the past couple of weekends, I haven't been watching Iron Chef. How did I miss this mess? I'm sure there will be reruns. I'm sure that after the challenge, Michael Symon kicked the crap out of the chairman and the producers.

Spike must have some serious naked pictures to get a shot at an Iron Chef? He runs a hamburger stand doesn't he? Other TC contestants have been on Iron Chef, but as sous chefs. And Spike wasn't even a TC finalist.

That ham is the most "pedestrian" thing I've ever seen on Iron Chef. Iron Chef may have jumped the shark on this one.

Big Shamu said...

Frankly Buzz, I wondered how he got on there too. I'm wondering if past Top Chef finalists are restricted by contract from being on there. Not that any of it matters to Spike. Good or bad, he lives for being in front of a camera.

Aunty Belle said...

Spike's jes' a monumental bore.

But readin' backwards in KK,
A Day at elBulli !! OhMiGosh, Shamy, what a fine read...an yore library ROCKS! That bookmobile is the best I'se seen.

and "foodie Bucket list"? ha! what an idea. gonna start workin' on mine now, an it sure ain't gonna include the local "asian fusion" minimalist emporium whar' I recently was subjected to a menu that spanned Japan and Turkey. Imagine curried Turkish food an' youse feelin' mah pain.

Boxer said...

How super sweet. My Father is going to show my nephew how to make bread NEXT weekend and I think after this great post, I'll document it.

LaDivaCucina said...

blech! Now I can't even say I can watch Iron Chef on Food Network! (I prefer the original Japanese shows from the past over the new anyway)

The most entertaining show for me now on FNW is "What would Brian Boitano Make?" although it's a bit too family friendly for my tastes. (where's the all-boy dinner parties?!)