Danny Gagnon left Top Chef 5 last night making a football analogy: the refs made the wrong call on the play.
Danny spoke with us today and the football references continued; Top Chef is the Superbowl for chefs, he said, and while he clearly has strong feelings that it wasn’t his time to go, he’s still glad he had the chance to play at all.
Read on to find out who he thought should have gone instead and what he thought of the judges.
Danny still stands behind his contributions to the dish, saying that a complete dish contains a veg, starch, protein and sauce. His contributions of sauce and veg were solid, he thinks, and worthy of defense. Danny seemed to feel pretty strongly that it was Eugene Villiatora’s turn to go home, comparing him to a football coach that calls the wrong play. Danny felt that Eugene drove the sushi concept, overcooked the shrimp and rice and failed to tell the guests how to eat the dish, so was more deserving of heading home.
Danny also said the addition of mushrooms to Carla Hall’s salad was actually discussed prior to the plating, contrary to what Carla said, and he maintains they were seasoned properly, despite what Tom Colicchio said.
He was disappointed overall, he said, that Tom didn’t seem to have much positive to say about his performance on the show, saying he thought that Tom took his positives and turned them into negatives.
Otherwise, he felt the judges were “nice” and “knew what they were talking about.” He found Padma Lakshmi kind and beautiful.
As to the other chefs, he said he did continue to find the “Euro Duo” of Stefan Richter and Fabio Viviani kind of annoying due to their cockiness and attitude of superiority towards the American chefs.
He admires Hosea Rosenberg’s skills the most, and said he didn’t mind Hosea’s comments in the episode about Danny being smarter than many folks would assume. Danny acknowledges that his Long Island accent can give people the wrong impression, contrasted against, say, Fabio, whose Italian accent will immediately charm people.
We also got the story behind his sculpted facial hair. He said when he played football, he shaved spikes into his beard so that was all that showed when he had on his helmet. So the look was very much his “game face” and helped him get in the mindset of the competition.
I asked him if he was disappointed to be competing so close to home, missing out on the chance to visit a new town, but he said he was happy to be only 40 minutes away from home, playing on his home turf.
He did, of course, get in a few additional “Baba Booey” shout-outs and seems to be maintaining his sense of humor despite the elimination from Top Chef.
Danny said knows it’s tough to have a family in the restaurant biz, and wants to find a way to make more time for his personal life at some point. He’d like to open his own restaurant in the future, but for now, if you’d like to try Danny’s food for yourself, he’s currently working at the Babylon Carriage House in Long Island, NY.
– Leslie Seaton, BuddyTV Staff Columnist
(Image courtesy of Bravo)