Top Chef Canada Episode 1 Recap: Fred?


Welcome to Season 3, Canada!  Here's not-Padma in a Herve Leger bandage dress.  This is how you guys want to start this thing?  OK, then.  This year, the stakes are even higher - they're giving away $250, 000 worth of cash and prizes. That's a whole lot of SPONGE TOWELS!

You can't tell the players without a scorecard.
The opening credits are making me squint.  So many gang signs, so much ironic bad dancing.  While there is no woman kicking a lemon this year there is a woman with red boxing gloves, which would be totally interesting if those were on her hands at all times during the competition.  Can you picture it?  "I think I did pretty well in the knife skills challenge...considering I'M WEARING BOXING GLOVES!"

Alright, let's meet these crazy bastards, as they embark on this journey in the glamour-filled metropolis of Toronto!

Here's Danny, a 27 year old from Montreal who works for Chuck Hughes.  Everyone calls him "Danny Smiles" cause he's really happy and doesn't care that you aren't yet sure if he's a cheerful 27 year old man or a very self assured, tough as nails lesbian.

Nicole runs a catering company.  She says a lot of inane stuff about loving food, but then when she arrives at the condo she turns her nose up at the treadmill and bemoans the lack of gin in the freezer so I like her already.

Dennis has a lot of tattoos and a girlfriend who's going to miss him.  He's a former breakdancer with a broken wrist.  Still in a cast.

Jonathan is the Executive Chef at the Royal Canadian Yacht Club and he's all about luxury.  He talks through clenched teeth and totally thinks you aren't good enough to eat his food.  Meet his bellhop and admire his designer luggage.

Ruth enters.  She's the actual self assured, tough as nails lesbian, so I guess we now know Danny is just a cheerful 27 year old boy.  Glad we cleared that up.

Katie is a bottle blonde who is "like a pit bull in a cage".  This is the same one was wearing boxing gloves in the credits, so...I guess we can see what her personal narrative is going to be.

Dan is an ex-pat Brit who lives on Vancouver Island now and claims to feel part Canadian.  The other chefs give him side eye.  Isn't there a Top Chef UK that you should go be on?

Chris is here to represent NEW Newfoundland where it isn't all about screech and bologna stew.  No, really.  That's a thing a friend of mine grew up eating in Newfoundland.  Bologna stew.  Chris has an adorable baby back home that we can expect to see lots of pictures of.

Kayla is a West Coaster who thinks she's doing pretty great for a 28 year old, thankyouverymuch.  She also loves her Grandma, so...I guess we can expect some sort of cage match style "inspiration off" between her Grandma and Chris' baby.

Calgary Chris likes to drink and have sex and says things like "this is pretty baller".  Uh-oh.

Becky's from Calgary too, but she works in Toronto now.  She says she's short, blonde and pretty cute. She is short, brunette and kind of angry looking.  She's also the kind of girl who will work the phrase "my boyfriend says" into ANY conversation.

Geoff, also from Calgary, arrives and we learn nothing about him.  Does this mean he'll be the first to be eliminated.

And what's with all these West Coasters?

Matthew is from Van and works with Rob Feenie.  He's got a nicely trimmed beard and an expensive looking shirt.

"If you're a well dressed chef, there's something you're hiding" - Danny Smiles

Now that we've met all these peeps we head into the kitchen.  The G.E. Monogram not-Padma is looking beautiful and is, I'm sure, scaring the bejesus out of these poor bastards just but standing there looking so poised.  It's unnerving.  McEwan makes up for the excessive glamour by sporting a very odd ginger jerry curl.


Culinary skills relay race in teams of 4.  We're shucking oysters, prepping a tenderloin, segmenting a lemon and preparing a mirepoix.  Cast boy is a stand out despite basically having one hand behind is back.  Danny Smiles is having a breakdown.  Someone named Fred from Quebec who we did not meet in the opening says he is a "quite person". So quiet he just showed up in the kitchen.  So confused.
Luxury boy decided not to tie up his beef properly and somebody named Clement has a food truck and a chip on his shoulder.  The red team, whoever they are, wins.


The chefs have to cook a meal inspired by the dish that inspired them to start cooking.  Seems like a fairly easy task, they need to find their comfort zones and settle in.

Chuck Hughes is the guest judge this week.  Will they play bad Canadian alternative music while he discusses what he's eating?

I seriously hope McEwan's is closed when these running maniacs do their shopping.  Can you imagine, you're picking out a melon and boom some crazed chef comes and knocks you down?

The kitchen at North 44  is under siege.  Someone is going home.

Ruth is funny and pretty adorable, Newfoundland Chris looks like he might cry over fresh ingredients and Cast Boy remains calm, despite being Cast Boy.  Kayla looks like she's going to cry all the time.  Is she or is this just a Robert Kennedy Jr. thing where she always sounds like that?  Oh, no, she might.  She didn't finish her plate.  Ooops.

Shereen is no longer pregnant, Chuck Hughes is in the house, G.E. Monogram not-Padma looks lovely.  They love Kayla's fried chicken so much the missing waffle might not matter. Nicole's chicken and rice is a hit, Danny Smiles lobster isn't perfect, but Chuck's still proud.  Some guy cooked a cabbage roll that didn't come together.  Who is that guy?

So many damn dishes.  God, there are a lot of chefs.  I can't even.  Let's just skip to the Beer Locker of Self Pity, shall we?  Top 3 are the Brit for his duck, Expensive Shirt for his chicken and not blonde Becky for her lemon pie.  Expensive Shirt Matthew wins and you know what?  Good for him.  He's going to enjoy that $5,000 worth of SPONGE TOWELS!

Bottom 3 are Crying Kayla, Fred? and Newfoundland Chris.  Fred? whoever he is, goes home.  Au revoir Fred?  We hardly knew ye.  Like, at all.  Really.  Were you even ON this show?

See you next week, when we go on a scavenger hunt in Riverdale Farm!

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