Top Chef Season 16 episode 8 review: Is this party all wet?


In this Top Chef Season 16 episode 8 review, the chefs were challenged to throw the ultimate Top Chef house boat party but was it really a party atmosphere?

What makes a great house boat party? Top Chef Season 16 episode 8 review asked the chefs to ditch the pristine, spacious Top Chef kitchen for a different cooking environment. In a cramped galley kitchen, can these chefs throw the ultimate Top Chef house boat party?

Throughout Top Chef Season 16, the show has done a great job highlighting some of Kentucky’s hotspots. From Churchill Downs to Maker’s Mark, Kentucky has such a vast culinary and cultural landscape. In this episode, viewers saw a great Kentucky tradition, a house boat party .

Did you know that Kentucky has more shoreline that Florida? That surprising fact was quietly dropped into the beginning of this week’s episode. While people don’t think about lakes, this atmosphere can be the perfect backdrop for a party. A house boat party is quite its own experience.

While Top Chef is really about the food, the chefs always need to understand the challenge. This week’s challenge was to throw a house boat party. Of course, the food needs to be delicious and well made. More importantly, it needs to fit the challenge. One team lost sight of that challenge.

The teams were chosen by Eddie, who won the previous episode challenge. He chose to have five chefs on his team (blue team). Truthfully, this decision might not have been the best. A house boat has a small galley kitchen. More chefs in the kitchen could add chaos and stress. Does Eddie ever do well with stress?

TOP CHEF — ” Whatever Floats Your Boat” Episode 1608 — Pictured: (l-r) Sara Bradley, Kelsey Bardnard, Justin Sutherland, Captain Sandy Yawn, Eric Adjepong — (Photo by: David Moir/Bravo)

As the chefs start planning and shopping, it seems clear that the green team had a clear plan. Their food was appropriate for a party. They had decorations and party favors. Kelsey’s background in catering/party planning was a huge advantage. How did Eddie overlook this knowledge?

With the party attendees choosing the “winning” team, it was rather clear that just great food wasn’t going to earn a team the win. Like many Top Chef challenges, understanding the “goal” is key. Party food isn’t the same as a plated meal.

It was fairly certain that the green team would win. While their dishes were relatively simple, they were flavorful and appropriate for this situation. A beautifully chilled oyster with a big punch of flavor was a homerun. Using the watermelon rind from a teammate’s dish was genius.

TOP CHEF — ” Whatever Floats Your Boat” Episode 1608 — Pictured: Kelsey Bardnard — (Photo by: David Moir/Bravo)

Additionally, Kelsey used her knowledge to her advantage. The puppy chow party favor almost guaranteed the green team a win. Let’s be honest. That dish was a throw away. My kid can make that snack on his own, but it excited the house boat party guests.

Kelsey deserved the win for this challenge. She used her knowledge and expertise to guide her team to the win. Hopefully, she can take this positive outcome and build on it. She needs to go far in this Top Chef Season 16.

The members of her team did well, too. From a beautifully fried fish to a delightful shrimp roll. It was smart, approachable party food. And, they all worked well as a team.

The blue team struggled. While Adrian’s sickness did effect the team somewhat, the team never really approached the challenge correctly. Sure, the power outage was a total disaster, the problems started with menu planning. A porchetta on a houseboat isn’t a wise choice.

More importantly, the blue team didn’t understand the “party” concept. No one seemed to be having fun on the blue team’s house boat. Everyone seemed nervous, unsure or watching their watch to leave.

TOP CHEF — ” Whatever Floats Your Boat” Episode 1608 — Pictured: Brian Young — (Photo by: David Moir/Bravo)

Most disturbing was Brian serving his porchetta from the hot tub. Sure, they wanted a gimmick, but there is something that just seems unsanitary about this idea. It was just wrong.

Looking at some of the dishes, the concepts might have been good, but something was missing. Michelle’s twist on a classic chip and dip flavor sounded awesome. A potato chip crusted fish with a French onion style dip should have been a winning concept. Apparently it wasn’t hot and it got soggy. It was this type of execution flaws that brought down the team.

The same can be said for Eddie. Shrimp on a stick sounds like the ultimate party food. Unfortunately, his food sat too long and the texture of the shrimp suffered.

The biggest mistake was made by Brian. Putting aside his choice to serve via the hot tub, his porchetta was just wrong. Bringing the pork was an odd choice. The pork belly fell apart. While he professes his love of butchery, he didn’t get this dish right. There were too many mistakes.

Again, the porchetta wasn’t a good choice for this challenge. Given the kitchen size and condition as well as the theme of the event, it wasn’t smart. There were other dishes that could have showed off his love of butchery and would have been a better fit.

It wasn’t that the blue team was horrible or everything was miserable, the green team was just better. It was that simple. The green team didn’t do anything that earth shattering either.

Going forward, the chefs need to remember to focus on the challenge. While they should always cook from the heart, they can’t ignore the challenge’s premise. Top Chef is designed to get chefs out of their comfort zone.

light. Related Story. Which iconic chocolate cake recipe was a happy accident?

What did you think of Top Chef Season 16 episode 8? Was this house boat party a swimming success or was it drowning in indecision?