December, Day 9: Liveblogging Top Chef Finale!

10:59 PM: When's the next season?

10:58 PM: Well, that was obvious. He was obviously really great all the way through. Crazy creative, absurdly talented, but I just don't like him, don't really like the sound of a lot of his food, and think he should have been nicer to his brother.

10:57 PM:
Brothers are the last two standing. Bryan is STILL so much nicer.

10: 56 PM:
Moment of Truth: NO! Poor Kevin.

10:55 PM:
Kevin's the fan favorite! Shocking.

10:52 PM:
Anyway, back to me. Drinks are fairly settled, but what about the food? Should I make sugar cookies? More of the apricot almond pine nut cookies? Something entirely new? I'm thinking about making a gougeres ring or maybe a couple tomato & mozzarella tarts, or maybe cheese fondue for something savory. Any suggestions for finger food for 25? I'm not afraid of new/difficult things, but need a couple of EASY fallbacks... Tell me!

10:51 PM:
COME ON, you can't knock Kevin for his mushroom and not tear Michael a new one for screwing up the cake! Michael's going to win. BLEH.

10:50 PM:
Michael fails! Bryan wins! Kevin's falling flat.

10:49 PM: Michael, Michael, Michael.

10:48 PM:
I NEED to own the table where the chefs sit around talking while they're being judged. Also, Michael says "none of us were stoked about what we did in the kitchen." Read: "I screwed up."

10:47 PM:
Michael sucks.

10:46 PM:
Michael's matsutakes were good, apparently. Lots of layers. Tom LOVES and has LOVED Michael the whole time. At least he admits the cake was overdone. It's like they're making excuses for him because they already think he's going to win.

10:45 PM:
Kevin's chicken skin and squash wins. Pork belly FAIL, though. Uh-oh.

10:44 PM:
Bryan's restraint is not a fault. Venison was "a story of my style." Sounds like it was tasty, though.

10:42 PM:
Guest list for Saturday's little shindig is up to 24. I haven't yet planned the menu. St. Cecilia's Society Punch, Glühwein, etc. to drink.

10:40 PM:
$125,000 on the line. Michael's nervous, Kevin's feeling good, Bryan's confident. I think Bryan will win, but I WANT Kevin to win. The brothers are just to froufy. I like Kevin's good, honest food. The others may be extremely well trained and brilliant and all that, but I think Kevin's got really good instincts.

10:38 PM:
If you're still bored during the commercials go here and see why I want a "private writer's residence."

10:36 PM:
Michael says, "me me me me me." Also, careful editing makes it very unclear who's in the lead. I'm also kind of sad that they've scaled back the finale. I miss the days of the hoedown, cooking in a barn for 400 people finales. That being said, it feels like they got more serious chefs and decided to give them a more serious challenge and more serious surroundings. Nice.

10:34 PM:
Kevin: Bacon in his dessert, but was it enough? Michael: they are ON to you! Good pumpkin seeds, though. Uh oh: almost very good. Bryan: Cheesecake was pleasant, finessed, fig sorbet! Win: Bryan.

10:34 PM:
Time for chaos in the kitchen: Michael has OVER COOKED his cakes, people!

10:32 PM:
Kevin: pork with pork. I like it. Bryan: talent, delicious, pungent. Michael: excellent squab, mushrooms were gimmicky, though. Kevin: undercooked pork, good sauce, but Tom is scowling.

10:31 PM:
Kevin: good broth, bad mushroom. Bryan: underseasoned curry, bland plating, well-cooked fish. But it's safe! Don't bore the judges. Michael: squash + lemon = win. Win: Michael.

10:30 PM:
I kind of love Southern pride. You know, the nice kind.

10:28 PM:
Bryan! Underseasoning! Oh no! Michael's prawn undercooked! Noooooo! Fried broccoli interesting, though. Win: Kevin.

10:27 PM:
Kevin: Southern fried chicken with squash & tomatoes. Bryan: Tuna noodle casserole via sardines. Michael: Cream of dehydrated broccoli. He wins for creativity. But weird.

10:23 PM:
"My mom's never eaten a sardine before." Snob.

10:22 PM:
If you're looking to kill some time during commercials, go here, where Jess gives you a little peek at the life of a grad student. Except we don't all come through so gracefully.

10:20 PM:
Did Michael bleach his hair for the finale? What's that about? He's bringing N'sync to the kitchen.

10:18 PM:
Mystery box - matsutake, rockfish, meyer lemon, and squash? Whaa? Also, did you all see the big new sous vide machine that's on the market? Want. Also, YES cook the fish in duckfat, Kevin. Badass.

10:17 PM:
I like Bryan SO much better than Michael. But dude. If I were a tenth as organized as these guys...

10:16 PM:
FOURTH course inspired by favorite childhood dish! Thank you, Tom!

10:14 PM:
How could Kevin and his mom be cuter?

10:13 PM:
Aww, it's their moms! Are they going to have to sous as well? But that could be awfully tricky with the bros.

10:12 PM:
One thing I really like about Top Chef: they all sit around and discuss how they can divide up kitchen space - so collegial.

10:11 PM:
Just looking at the menu for Cyrus to pass the time during the commercials - what's with Red Wine Risotto? Have you tried it? Is it any good? I'm inclined to say ewww. But then I've been wrong before.

10:10 PM: Favorite tweet of the day - I just remembered because of the M&M commercial: "Well, my Xmas present to Jessica went bust: M&M wouldn't let me put Lagerfeld and Wintour's faces on M&Ms. GFY HQ is a sad place today. -H" @fuggirls

10:09 PM:
WHO WAS AT THE DOOR? Either Tom or Padma, I'm guessing. Surprise quickfire?

10:08 PM:
Bryan = captain obvious. "It's going to come down to execution." REALLY.

10:06 PM:
They're cooking at Cyrus. Oh, and it's Iron Chef Top Chef! Mystery box!

10:04 PM: Aaand here come the old chefs. My picks: Jennifer and Eli. NOT ROBYN.

10:03 PM: Not judging Padma for being pregnant, but what is WITH her wardrobe the last couple episodes?! Also, do we like her bangs?

10:02 PM:
Bryan and Michael are really kind of mean to each other. I'm rooting for Kevin.

10:01 PM:
Now I have to actually figure out how to tell the brothers apart.

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