Strategy Reigns Supreme — Alton’s After-Show

by in Shows, August 18th, 2013


To succeed in the Cutthroat Kitchen, it’s not enough for a chef to come equipped with his lucky knife kit and years of experience at the stove. After all, a fellow competitor may prevent his use of that cutlery and make him question the extent of his skills, all with the help of $25,000 in spending money and the will to disrupt. Chefs must take assigned curve balls in stride and turn out quality dishes for a judge, who, without knowledge of the earlier mind games, will decide based on taste alone whose plate is the weakest. On Alton’s After-Show, host Alton Brown will reveal to the judge what’s gone down, and together they’ll dish on how the events unfolded and the food ultimately came to light.

In the series premiere, judge Simon Majumdar joined Alton in the Cutthroat Kitchen, and even after learning of some chefs’ use of inferior pork products in Round 1, revealed, “They all produced dishes that were kind of passable with one or two errors, rather than bad dishes with one or two good things about them.” Even though Chef Gianchetti had the most sought-after meat — thick-cut bone-in chops — in that round, his pork was severely overcooked, so much so that Simon admitted that “is actually worse than getting a poor ingredient and making it tasty.”

In what may prove true in each episode throughout the series, Simon explained: “Being a great chef is one thing. Being a strategic chef is another. If you can combine those, you can actually end up winning Cutthroat Kitchen without being technically the best chef.” It’s that kind of thinking that would lead chefs to risk wisely and cook intelligently in order to best their rivals and ultimately take home cash.

Click the play button on the video above to hear more from Simon and Alton, and learn what Simon would have done had he been cooking in Cutthroat Kitchen. How do you think the competitors responded to their challenges? Chat with fellow fans about it in the comments below.

Check back after each episode of Cutthroat Kitchen on Sunday night to find a new installment of Alton’s After-Show.

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Comments (63)

  1. Penni says:

    I like the show quite a bit, but I get annoyed at the chefs' bidding. Why aren't they strategic in that? You don't increase your bids by hundreds or thousands at a time! Why would anyone play that way? If they want the item desperately, they just need to keep bidding and outbid their other chefs. And maybe they'd do that for a lot less than if they suddenly jump to $3,000–or more.

  2. Guest says:

    As much as I love Alton Brown and respect his knowledge of cooking and food, I totally dislike this show. Why are we celebrating being mean, nasty, underhanded and wasteful? It is a poor example and model to set for our society. I will not be watching this again.

    • notwatching says:

      I agree. I'm really disappointed in Alton Brown – why aren't we concentrating on integrity and true skill. I won't be watching.

    • MRubenzahl says:

      Wow. I just posted to Facebook almost exactly what you said!

      Wanted to like Cutthroat Kitchen on Food Network but am disappointed. None of the contestants are likable. All fake-smack talk and bogus bravado. Pointless handicaps wipe out any opportunity to show talent. And a waste of Alton Brown, none of whose talents are used here.

    • David Carter says:

      I disagree. I love the strategy and challenge of a game and view this show as a game. Have you ever played cards or a board game without trying to figure out how to get ahead? There has to be a place for fun competition.

    • bree_zee says:

      You must really have your head buried in the sand if you think our society is modeled after polite, and selfless individuals. Our ancestors TOOK what they wanted if they had the brute strength to support their actions. This show is about strategy and skill. Ever try to make ice cream with no eggs? It takes someone who can think on their feet to succeed on this show. And it's damn funny sometimes!!

    • Thelma Merritt says:

      I totally agree

    • Walter says:

      First of all, it's a game. Next, it shows children how to overcome obstacles. Creativity and inventiveness are both excellent attributes any child will do well to develop.

  3. Jen says:

    Stupid concept. Really.

  4. Paul Sjharpe says:

    Horrible show, horrible outcome, winner is a moron… HGTV get your stuff together before u turn into Faux idiot news…

  5. Jayson says:

    What a boring stupid show this was. I watched it this one time and will never watch it again. What a waste of airtime and what a waste of my time. Does FN not have any intelligent programmers left?

    • bree_zee says:

      so after determining the show to be a waste of time, you decided to look it up on the internet and take the opportunity to comment.

  6. Guest says:

    I miss the happy, goofy guy with the Hawaiian shirt, the pepper mill on the drill and the fascinating lessons about food. This guy is a supreme douchebag, and I wouldn't watch this show under a court order. And in the interest of full disclosure, I only saw the part of the "bologna taco" episode about making somebody hand-squeeze orange juice. There's a bright side, though: I've now found somebody on this sad fustercluck of a network even more unlikeable than Guy Ferry.

  7. Morgan says:

    I hear it said quite often on the different blogs. ALTON BROWN… we all MISS the Old you! the funny, smiling, happier you! I so miss the cooking information. I sure wish the OLD Alton Brown would come back!

    • ritgar says:

      How true! I also miss Good Eats. They moved it to the Cooking Channel, a premium channel by me. Bye-bye my favorite show! It seems like there is no one left anymore (well, may except for Ina) who can actually teach you to cook.

  8. Storm says:

    This show has some good points and bad. The good points are, the chefs have to up their game to win. It also helps them to be ready for whatever comes their way. One point I think some of us agree on, is that this show is teaching our kids to be nasty and mean to others in order to get ahead.

  9. James says:

    This show rocks. Screw the haters and wimps regarding the "vindictiveness ". Love Alton no matter what he does. This is something new, fresh, interesting and exciting. Thanks FN.

  10. Concerned Chef says:

    I think they are running out of ideas and judging by the sabotage request from the producers it is quite clear to me Cutthroat Kitchen is in deep trouble. Entire time I was watching this show I thought where is the 'cooking' If the show is all about sabotage and not about competing under extreme condition like the name suggests then why is it on Food Network. Furthermore why do they even bother judging the food when it is painfully clear that no culinary skill determines the outcome of the dish. Food Network should hire some good actors and script the show then I can poke fun at it rather then feeling like I wasted my time watching this mean spirited garbage. I used to think the whiny creepy guy on Sweet Genius was painful to watch, nevertheless Chef Ron guides his contestants to create something wonderful utilizing his surprise ingredients. Trying to rationalize the madness behind surprise auctions well in to cooking time which by the way only spells out doom for the recipient is utterly immoral and completely shatters the spirit of competition. It's sort of like running a 100 meter dash and at the last second the Olympic committee member trips you and says give me back the cash.

    • LEE Gilliard says:

      i just started to blog and resond to my favorite shows and read this comment about cut throat kitchen… concerned chef, you're an idiot! i hope to God they allow you a chance to compete and you get to see how challenging it is to be a competitor on the show i bet you don't win, and that will make for great television! What kind of chef are u anyways, oh, I know (Chef Boy Retarded Indeed)

      This is a great Show!

    • Chloe <3 says:

      I think you should read my comment. I think it will relate to yours.

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