Robin and John Hickenlooper dine with Padma Lakshmi at the governor’s mansion on “Top Chef.” (Paul Trantow, provided by Bravo)
Because we’re determined to stay on top of all things “Top Chef” while the Bravo show is in our own backyard, we’re offering recaps of all episodes. Here’s the rundown on Episode 10, which took place at The Stanley Hotel and the Governor’s Residence at Boettcher Mansion.
Local places highlighted in this episode: For the Quickfire Challenge, the contestants headed up to the Stanley Hotel to make the scariest thing of all for chefs: dessert! Ahhh!
The cheftestants served up their super-scary desserts to Padma Lakshmi, who taste-tested in Room 217, the spot that inspired Stephen King to write “The Shining.”
For the Elimination Challenge, Lakshmi tasked the chefs with creating a dish that told the story of their culinary journey on “Top Chef” Colorado. She informed them that this was their final Denver-area challenge before they packed up their knives and left … for Telluride.
The chefs prepared and served their dishes at the Governor’s Residence at Boettcher Mansion.
Local people spotted in this episode: Since the food was served at their house and all, Gov. John Hickenlooper and his wife, Robin, were at the table. Joining them were chefs Frank Bonanno (Mizuna, Bones, Osteria Marco), Steve Redzikowski (Acorn and Oak at Fourteenth), and Tommy Lee (Uncle and Hop Alley).
Local ingredients highlighted in this episode: A couple of chefs used Fruition Farms Creamery cheeses, and Carrie Baird used Colorado elk.
Graham Elliot, Tom Colicchio, Frank Bonanno and Tommy Lee are clearly happy about whatever they’re eating on “Top Chef” Colorado. (Paul Trantow, provided by Bravo)
How our Colorado chef did: Baird (Bar Dough) had a nightmare of a time with the Stanley Hotel dessert challenge. She failed to get most of her dish on the plate, and Padma said she was lucky it wasn’t a sudden death Quickfire.
She did much better, however, at the Elimination Challenge. Her elk tenderloin, which she described as being a “colorful, Colorado-forward dish,” impressed the judges and landed her in the top three. Again.
Drama: Judge Tom Colicchio was not happy with the chefs. And no one wants an unhappy Tom. He gave the remaining cheftestants a stern warning to step up their games and even said he was getting better food from the eliminated chefs at Last Chance Kitchen.
Memorable line: “The governor’s so nice! I really think we made a connection. We’ll probably be best friends this time next year,” enthused Carrie Baird after meeting Hick.
Challenge-winning dish: Mustache Joe’s pasta.
Eliminated contestant: Bruce Kaplan (UNION and Knead & Co. Pasta Bar + Market; Los Angeles, Calif.), who was ready to go home and meet his new baby, born while Kaplan filmed the show. The judges agreed.