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Gapers Block published from April 22, 2003 to Jan. 1, 2016. The site will remain up in archive form. Please visit Third Coast Review, a new site by several GB alumni.
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Sunday, December 3

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TV Thu Feb 02 2012

Top Chef Texas, Episode 13: Child's Play

I'm back! Just like Pee-Wee Herman, evidently. Three thoughts on this week's episode of "Top Chef".

Last night's installment felt sort of out of step with the rest of the season. Padma looked like a grown-up for the first time this season (did she finally put her beautiful foot down and refuse any more denim or weird jumpsuit things?), and a well-known child-like grown-up was guest judging. The connection to Texas was the most tenuous we've seen it (except for the Charlize Theron ep, which didn't even try). And despite multiple hurdles in the elimination challenge (find your own food, bike it around town, talk your way into someone else's kitchen), the cheftestants seemed pretty low-key on the drama index. All of which made for a fun episode to watch! Sing it with me now, "The stars at night, are big and bright..."

I was sad to see Grayson pack her knives and go. A Wisconsin girl who couldn't help but deliver gargantuan protein portions, sass Tom (twice!) and get away with it, and play nice during all the drama earlier this season -- I miss her already.And did anyone else catch her childhood cooking photo during the pancakes quickfire? While she was reminiscing about making a mess cooking in her home kitchen growing up, it looked more like an un-screened episode of "Little House on the Prairie," with the long pioneer-Victorian dress and what was probably flour but looked an awful lot like gunpowder all over the floor. The kind of photo that says, "Something terrible may have just happened here..." and that totally makes me like her even more.

All in all, it was a fun episode, though I'm not sure it was the best endorsement for biking... In Texas anyway.

And one last thought about Episode 12, for which I was asleep on the couch and failed to watch until the weekend. (Grad school, people. It's hard...sometimes.) While we lost Chris Jones (for the last time, not THAT Chris Jones) who we can only hope will cut his hair and be a good grooming role model for the family we never knew he had until the last few episodes, we gained what seemed like a sense of calm and stability that was utterly and likely purposefully lacking in the first portion of the season. The chefs that remain seem to genuinely respect and maybe even kind each other.

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Feature Thu Dec 31 2015

The State of Food Writing

By Brandy Gonsoulin

In 2009, food blogging, social media and Yelp were gaining popularity, and America's revered gastronomic magazine Gourmet shuttered after 68 years in business. Former Cook's Illustrated editor-in-chief Chris Kimball followed with an editorial, stating that "The shuttering of Gourmet reminds...
Read this feature »

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