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Bobby Flay’s Triple Breakfast Club

Yes, the fat chef/counselor boy watches a lot of tv about food. I am watching more competition oriented stuff because the best yummies you ever nummied stuff sends me on errands my doctor likes to give me a hard time about. Can’t watch ‘em all though, them competition shows. Really skilled contestants being challenged in imagination and technique…I’m in. Three nearly psychotic people who’s kitchen credit is a recent if short stint as a “sandwich artist” getting ridiculed by Gordon Ramsay…hard pass. i.e. Top Chef, yes. Chef’s Bitc…uhhhh Hell’s kitchen. Nay, nay.

I struggle with Bobby Flay. He is as legit a skilled winner as I can believe anything on t.v. to be real. But when you say it’s about flavor, like you’re the only cook to ever consider it, I again struggle. There’s a new offering with the Knife wielding Ginger name of Bobby’s Triple Threat. Here we are in the middle again, the overly dramatic slo-mo city walk of a fancy pants chef in an Italian suit, entering his hidden underground Kitchen Kumite makes me want to change the channel. Then you see who the competitors are…three house champs (sorry, “Titans”) which must be defeated in three separate outings and …well…I guess it depends on who the champs actually are. Ahhhhh, Tiffany Derry, Michael Voltaggio, Brooke Williamson. Now, I gotta watch. There might be more “just add water drama” than your average cooking competition show, or maybe about the same amount, but the skill and the breadth of the skills of those three, let alone the bio’s and awards credited to the contenders, I’m in. I might be a French-trained culinarian but I have absolutely no illusion of ever being in the ball park of these three plus one’s. I can only be inspired, and often am. I love those moments where someone is doing something you know a fair bit about and how they go about it leaves you rubbing your temples, wondering who first thought of something that crazy, and is Giant Eagle still open?!? I wanna try. These three can do that repeatedly.

While, watching the third episode (Well done, Chef Zepeda, BTW) I was suddenly struck by a notion that while imperfect made me giggle enough to share. In some ways the cast of the show made me think of an 80’s John Hughes classic. There they were, sitting on the couch together, chatting away, and it hit me…I’m watching The Breakfast Club! Yes, I know it’s going to break down at some point, but stick with me until then.

  1. Bobby Flay is Richard Vernon, strutting around his amalgamation of “youngins” threatening them in his fancy blazer to meet his expectations for the day.
  2. All three Titans are Brian Johnson, uber nerds that may fail at a shop project here or there but are smart and dedicated and experienced enough to overcome almost any eventuality and will have their choice of Ivy League futures.
  3. Chef Williamson is chef enough to probably be annoyed by the fact that she reminds me most of Claire Standish. It might be the California thing, or the chipper attitude regardless of environment, but there you go.
  4. Chef Voltaggio may have hints of Andrew Clark but he be Bender. Top to bottom. John Bender all the way, end of story. I think the season finale might feature him flipping off or punching (lightly, don’t smack the taste out of his mouth) Bobby. One can dream.
  5. Chef Derry then ends up Allison Reynolds. Here’s why it’s a better fit than switching with Brooke. While both are crazy varied in technique and styles, it seems Williamson would be more at home with a canvas bag from the farmer’s market. While Derry would have no problem with the organic produce and products, she would also look at a bag of Wonder Bread, Cap’n Crunch and Pixie sticks and not blink an eye. I could see her going with something Thai to celebrate Cap’n Crunches 5th voyage to Southeast Asia, especially once she learns Jet Tila is the guest judge.

So, it doesn’t completely work out, but I dare you to not see some of it if you catch an episode.


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