'Top Chef Texas' Premiere Recap: A Less Than Spicy Start

Top Chef TexasYee haw! Top Chef: Texas kicked off tonight in the Lone Star state. Remember the Alamo? Well, it started there, with 29 chefs competing for 16 coveted jackets that would keep them in the game.

With such a large starting pool, it was a bit difficult to keep track of who was who, and what they were cooking, and whose credentials were the most impressive. Also, the many format changes were a bit unnerving, and frankly -- it was a little on the dull side. Even judge Emeril Lagasse didn't spice it up much.

The chefs were divided into three groups for the first challenge. The first group was asked to prepare a pork dish, which they had to butcher from a pig themselves. The second chose rabbit to prepare (chicken fried rabbit anyone?). And the third ... we don’t know yet, as only two groups cooked tonight (annoying!).

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When the game began, there was no messing around in Texas. When one cocky contestant couldn’t hack it when it came to hacking up the pork, he was sent home before he got to cook a single thing. When another spilled some soup, he was sent packing. Those whose dishes the judges actually tasted were either given a jacket to signify their spot in the competition, denied and sent home, or placed on “the bubble” (some folding chairs in a room) where they waited in limbo before their chance to try and get themselves off of it and into a jacket.  

There’s a lot of talent this season and it's quite early, but I do have a few favorites. Tops on my list is Keith Rhodes, who formerly served time in prison for dealing drugs but has since turned his life around. He seems so grateful to be there and wowed the judges with his dish. I’m rooting for him. Also -- Chris Crary, but mostly because he’s hot.

Hopefully tonight isn't an indication of the season to come and rather it's just a slow southern start. I’m still holding out hope that Texas is going to deliver big.

What did you think of the Top Chef premiere tonight?


Image via Bravo

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