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Top Chef Recap: Govind Guest Judges, CJ's Big Role

What's particularly enjoyable about working on the web is that we can pretty much see who's reading Eater any time of day, what you're clicking on, how you got here. After this week's episde of Top Chef with Table 8 chef Govind Armstrong as a guest judge, many found us by searching for "Govind Armstrong girlfriend." Let's put all of you dreadlock-chef fans out of your misery: He's taken, long-term GF. Now that that's out of the way, let's talk about G's appearance last night. Because he's been picked as one of People's "Most Beautiful People" and named one of LA's "Hot Chefs," we really thought they were going to play up his sex appeal. The way Padma purred "guilty plezzzures" when introducing the ice cream challenge, and then Govind advising the contestants to select "whatever turns them on," we thought, "UGH! Not again!" But no, thankfully that was the extent of it. In fact, Govind played such a small role in the whole episode---at least in the final edited show---that it was completely uninteresting. We guess because of his new cookbook "Big Nights, Small Bites," he was selected for this post-drinking bar-food challenge, but the tie-in wasn't all that clear. And could they pick two of the most boring clips with quickfire-challenge winner Dale and Govind dining at Table 8 Miami? Was there any conversation to chose from, or did the two just sit there and eat?

Our boy CJ had a much bigger role this week, and not just because he towered over the three petite contestants on his team. He tried to rally the lame-os at the grocery store, in the mobile kitchen they had to cook in, when judge Tom Colicchio waited (and waited and waited) for his food. CJ tells the judges that he played professional volleyball for three years, so he's used to team dynamics, but his attempts at pulling everyone out of a slump couldn't work on a group weighed down by Howie's stubbornness and Sarah and Casey's sour mood because they had to cook in heels. But CJ perseveres again, and gets another chance at the final prize. Three random thoughts about the episode: CJs chivalry towards women under Howie's attack has not gone unnoticed, there are only two women left (!), and could there be any more gratituous shots of Tre in a tank top? We didn't have time to check in with LA's favorite volleyball-playing, uni-balled, sarcastic cheftestant this week, but next week for sure. He's probably busy anyway.

More about the episode on the Top Chef site, and more Eater/Top Chef fun can be found here