It was a rough night for Boston’s own Michael Schlow on last night’s premiere of Top Chef Masters. The Radius co-owner came in dead last with 13.5 out of a possible 25 stars. Ouch. During the Quickfire, the cheftestants had to prepare dessert for a panel of Girl Scouts. Schlow prepared a peanut butter chocolate concoction that looked unappetizingly brown and that the girls compared unfavorably to a Tagalong. He didn’t fare much better in the Elimination, which required the judges to prepare a three-course meal in a college dorm room. While the college students enjoyed his crudo, the judges found his cabbage soup undercooked and his pork chop overdone, albeit well-spiced.
Though Schlow whiffed a little bit on the challenges, he did provide a few moments of good television. The producers portrayed Schlow as a working chef, which is a little hilarious. The man oversees four restaurants and for Pete’s sake, Patrick Connolly won a Beard in 2008 for his work as Radius’ executive chef. Schlow also referenced his personal friendship with Cam Neely (whose foundation he was competing on behalf of) at least twice and idly remarked “the last time I used a hot plate was in college, attempting to…I made this girl I liked an omelet on a hot plate.” Overall, the whole show seemed like a pale imitation of Top Chef from the ever-so-slightly different theme music (though they kept the aggressive instrumental knock-off of Spoon’s “I Turn My Camera On” as in-episode accompaniment) to Kelly Choi’s weak elimination line: “Please return to the kitchen and pack your knives.” Now that we have no Bostonian to root for, we doubt we’ll watch again.