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Top Chef Recap: And Then There Were Three

We're embarrassed to admit, but we were surprisingly on the edge of our seat watching Top Chef last night. But in retrospect, we kind of knew Malarkey wouldn't make it to the end. The tells were all there: Having the chef from a seafood restaurant mess up trout was a pretty good giveaway. The exec chef of Oceanaire in San Diego said something about "most chefs don't consider trout seafood." Um, ok, it's riverfood? It's aquatic and has fins, like most of the other fish you cook. Then there's the whole cowboy hat thing, bragging that he raised sheep as a kid, and how long he took to explain the elk dish was reminiscent of last season's Stephen, and that pretty much clinched his departure. Next, a few more thoughts about last night's ep.

(1) Not shocked that Malarkey got the cowboy boot. We knew he couldn't win the damn thing, but we were right that he would make it far in the competition.

(2) Also correct: Hung and Casey in the bottom two, except now it's bottom three, as chef Tom sprung on the chefs right before the elimination round.

(3) Dale completes the trifecta, and he's now our favorite (we're fickle). His speech about how he ended up in the competition (lost a job, lost vision, but "found" himself) was actually quite moving because it seemed extremely sincere. Saying he knows nothing about cowboys but dated a few, priceless. We still hate his Mohawk and manpris, but damn Dale, you got spirit, kid. It's anyone's game now.

(4) According to Eric Ripert, Casey's got "soul." And Hung? He claims he has soul and spirit, but we're not so sure. Maybe when he starts cooking his mama's food, it will come through. Or he'll shoot himself in the foot with more asshole antics. But what would TC be without the asshole?

(5) Next week we expect to see past cheftestants arrive in Aspen to help the final three compete for that $100,000 prize. We imagine that means CJ, too. A quick glimpse of Todd English at the judges table. They show Casey running around freaking out: creating suspense? Maybe she takes it. The results will then air live in Chicago, the location for TC4, next Wednesday, October 3. Yes, we already have Chi-town operatives all over it.
· All Sorts of Top Chef Fun [~ELA~]