Top Chef season 16, episode 6 recap: Roaring Munchies shows who’s ready to eat the competition


Top Chef: Kentucky keeps the surprises coming this season, as the judged spiced things up coming out of an early Restaurant Wars. A surprising battle between old faces led this Prohibition-themed episode.

Last Chance Kitchen took center stage this week and required some help from Top Chef contestants. Brother came back from seasons past to challenge Nini for a new life in the Top Chef house. Judging from the welcoming party once back at the house, the help was obligatory at best.  Nini just cannot break her losing streak after a promising early start to Top Chef: Kentucky.

This week’s Top Chef episode, Roaring Munchies, had no quickfire challenge that included all aspiring Top Chef‘s. Brother’s head-to-head with Nini led straight into this week’s elimination challenge. The contestants had to make a dish inspired by Prohibition-era cocktails.

There was the timeless Old Fashioned and Whiskey Sour along with a 12 Mile Limit drink and the Southside Fizz. The dishes were to be bite-sized and served at a Roaring 20’s party with “Flappers and Dapper Dans,” or so says the TV Guide.

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The past dictated the future this week. Brian again was in the weeds, over prepped with too much too much sausage and not enough time for the finishing touches. As with the sand in an hourglass. his time and dish were falling to the bottom and worse, tasted about the same according to the judges.

In the judges’ bell curve, Justin’s duck and Sara’s scallop dishes were both comfortably on the top end. Michelle’s position is dicier, but she has been getting consistent screen time this season. This week she gave a short editorial on meditation and how it helps her focus on the goals of being Top Chef. Her dish did not win, which soured her night, but she lives on to sip whiskey one more day.

Eric has been pushing the boundaries and was on the verge of making the same mistake as Brian. Having so many oysters to shuck during service was a challenge that was self-imposed. Failure would have been obviously self-inflicted in front of the judges. In the end, the oysters were shucked in time for service.

Brother did not receive the best reception, especially from Kelsey. She may be ruthless, but she would rather win a contest not disrupted by gimmicks. This episode felt like a new gimmick. One well beyond springing Restaurant Wars early in the season. Thankfully for peace in the house, the past mistakes came back for a second helping.

Brother decided to take a left turn with his dish, coming nowhere near the flavors of classic Kentucky whiskey cocktails. Instead, he delivered to the judges a dish of chili with what was allegedly chicken but the judges have yet to taste any yardbird. Just like the 1920’s bird in the yard, Brother got the chop and will crow no more this season.

Really, Brother had to be sent packing. He is the one contestant that no one watching this season had any investment in. He was a speed bump that slowed down a season that was rolling along like a prized racehorse.

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Eric took top honors this week. All of that effort brought him a win, and just in oyster shucking time. Kelsey and Eddie also finished in the judges top 3. On the bottom, Brian is pushing his luck with bad decisions before the stoves and burners are even lit and heated.

If he cannot make better planning decisions and get his head in the game, his knives will soon be packed. Sara might have been surprised to be on the bottom this week, but Padma put her on notice with the direct questions. It’s time for a new approach, and a way to break bad habits.

What did you think of this Top Chef episode? Be sure to tell us in the comments below!