The clear favorite among Bravo’s aspiring chefs is 20-year veteran Eve Aronoff, chef/owner/cougar of her eponymous 6-year old restaurant “Eve” in Ann Arbor, MI whose triumph is trumpeted by none other than Mario Batali, Alice Waters, Ulterior Epicure, Slowfood’s founder Patrick Martins and Carolyn S. from Yelp. Incumbent chef-owners/partners have nothing to lose (or gain) in this soap-flavored game show (other than dignity and reputation) and like the Olympics are much more serious and refreshing to watch now that dopey amateurs have been cut. Eve believes in the philosophy of French cooking (her Bravo bio is cut & pasted from her own website) and has Thai dumplings, Thai BBQ chicken, Cypriot cheese, curried mussels, nachos, risotto, coconut-ginger rice, beef chimichurri, macadamia encrusted salmon, tres leches and French bread on her menu. Bravo! She’s a sure bet in winning enough plastic wrap and not-so-biodegradable to-go tupperware to help open a Club Med franchise. If not, she can always fall back on the dream of owning her own restaurant which she has already fulfilled and the current cougar trend.
Hector brings the boorish brow of a serial rapist and an angry 245lb lobster’s disposition. Look for Hector to be driving the creepy ice-cream van in the “food truck challenge” while Bryan hawks seasonal freeze-smoked local tonka-bean bearclaws with organic arugula foam and heirloom sprinkles out of the trunk of a State Trooper vehicle. (His penchant for caloric sweets was documented in Gluttony Digest Issue 3, Vol 1 page 8)

Jolly flood victim and virgin hippie Kevin Gillespie may give the editors and lighting technicians more of a challenge than the other contestants based on the reflective nature of his pasty skin. It might crisp up nicely under powerful lights or could provide a Rubenesque canvas for a whimsical approach to the body-sushi-sandwich quickfire challenge.

Sideshow oddity Jesse Sandlin gives me the willies. The combinationof heft, metal thing through her lip and attention seeking tattoos make my testicles tingle (in a bad way), the sensation many males feel on the first descent on a roller coaster. So does “ranch “dipparoo”“ that accompanies the fried chicken at Abarcrombie Fine Foods which shares the distinction of being “world-famous” with hundreds of small town coffee shops, campy happy-hours and Virgin Island mahi-mahi burger shacks that I was unaware of until reading theself-professed planetary recognition in their windows.