Team Giada Remains on Top: Your Week One Picks Revealed

by in Food Network Star, May 21, 2012

philip ippy aiona
The first week vote tally is in, and Team Giada has once again swept the top three spots of the Star Fan Vote. Laid-back Ippy Aiona took Martita Jara's first place spot this week with 21% of the vote. Still in the top three — but down 2% from last week was Martita — followed by Linkie Marais at 13%.

Team Giada had something to brag about this week as they took home their first win. Alton must be feeling the pressure, having been in the bottom two the first two weeks in a row. After coming off a win in the first episode, Team Bobby needs to regroup for week three as the finalists face one of their toughest challenges yet: a Chopped basket.

Why haven't we seen any members from Team Bobby or Team Alton in the top spots yet?

The in-season Fan Vote resets each week, so make sure to cast your vote for your favorite finalist up to 10 times per day.

 

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Comments (197)

  1. Ron says:

    Foodnetwork star follows the recipe of Chopped and American Idol. Women can't win. Misogyny, I doubt it but who knows. The fact is that female contestants are held to a higher standard than the men.

  2. vert2013 says:

    If Eric says "I work in the California wine country" one more time....

    • lizusnret says:

      Or "hand-crafted".

    • beachinfrizzy says:

      Yeah I want to like him...he seems so earnest and has a solid POV but dude is just borrrring. Probably can't think of anything else to say..."And who was behind the counter? A Chinese American!! Just Like Me!!" Oy vey.

  3. Luna says:

    I personally like Martita the best. She has a fire but not to the point where she seems arrogant. She's very respectful and works well with others. Now that she's bringing down the barriers, you can see she's a lot of fun. Her dishes look great and, from the feedback on tv, tastes great. She evidently really wants this because when she got in, she cried tears of joy. She has a huge passion for food and therefore a lot of potential to be the next Food Network Star.

    Unlike a lot of people, I don't hate Josh. If Giada can help him fix his rock star side, he could do pretty well.

    One person I do kind of dislike is Nikki. She has a fire, but almost arrogantly. Sure, she's trying to help but let others lead too.

    On episode 2, I think they made a good choice in keeping Judson. Kara didn't seem to really want it and left without looking too hurt. Judson cried over it because its important to him.

    I like this season of FN Star though. You can tell that all the contestants love food and really want this.

    • Food Fan says:

      I wouldn't have minded a double-elimination, at least for this round.
      I hope we do see at least one double-elimination before this is all over. And sooner, rather than later.

      Want to give this new format a chance. I like, for example, how Alton coached the guy on Tell me, Dont sell me. Nice to see a bit more patience and positive encouragement and less snappiness. This was good.

      Hoping we can keep it simple this year. No gimmicks.
      Someone who:
      rocks the house with their food
      simply explains how we can make it
      has an easy-going smile.

    • kawgirl says:

      kara was let go because she can't cook. The 2 of the 3 dishes she made was her Moms recipes !!! The dish that the tourist said it tasted like it came out of the freezer section was ALL her. And like the judges said she is nothing special and not memorable.

    • beachinfrizzy says:

      Martita is very pretty that's for sure and seems like a nice personality. I was wondering about her ceviche though...she was putting the clams and oysters in the oven "just for a few minutes until the shells open" to make them easier to shuck...but by the time the shells open, the meat is cooked...I'd be afraid the subsequent marination in the acidic lime juice mixture might 'overcook' it and compromise the texture somehow. Maybe she just added them at the end?

      • martita says:

        Hola! Just wanted to chime in and let you know that I placed the clams & oysters in hot oven for just a couple of minutes, just until they began to very slightly open. This makes the shucking process a whole lot easier! It's a little trick for when on a time crunch which I totally was! They were by no means cooked in the oven. All was done in lemon and lime juice :-)

        • beachinfrizzy says:

          Hi Martita, thanks for explaining! I've only prepared clams/oysters steamed on the stovetop or on the grill (my husband's allergic so I don't very often)...and by the time I hear or see the "pop" they are fully cooked which is why I was wondering! I will have to try your trick!

        • FanFare57 says:

          I wondered the same thing as "Beachfrizzy" mentioned. Thank you for your explanation. btw: good luck to you!

      • martita says:

        oh yes and thank you for the compliment :-)

        • beachinfrizzy says:

          No problem, it's true! Looking forward to watching the rest of your journey!

          • Food Fan says:

            (smile). So cool that the contestants are reading the comments in here. I wonder how much time they ever get, to be on a computer, iPad or laptop to get a chance to read. Nice that they do!

          • FanFare57 says:

            The contest may be over by now.

    • Bet says:

      Just because someone thinks Josh is doing poorly doesn't mean they hate him. I haven't noticed anyone saying they feel extreme hostility toward him. Why would they?

      • Food Fan says:

        Is Josh the guy that did the Somersault? I missed that episode.
        I did watch Josh's video's, though. Apparantly, Giada really wanted him to come out of his shell. Maybe this is just an "over-compensating at the beginning" thing. Will hafta keep watching and see if he gets more down to earth, or doesnt.
        I've been spending quite a bit of time watching the contestants videos. I highly encourage everyone to do so. Good stuff to see. I noticed, watching Justin's: When?--does this guy ever smile??
        Oh yes, it takes alot more than just that. You cant just smile yer way to a win. And I dont think anyone should. But I watched both of his videos and what jumped out at me was: whatever qualifications this guy has, there just doesnt seem to be anything "warm" about him. Might be a good Cook, nothing makes me wanna watch him. Maybe he'll change. Dont knbow.

        • Jerilee says:

          Josh needs to separate his rock star personna from his chef personna. He can be both, but not at the same time. I'm sure he's not doing somersaults and climbing on his prep station when he is fixing sushi. if he expects to become the next FN star he needs to get his act together, and fast.

    • martita says:

      gracias Luna :-)

    • Robert Ostrowski says:

      Luna - I would agree with you on most of the things you said, and as to Josh, I believe he tries real hard but his PRESENTATION needs a little polishing. I was watching him ramble on and on about something in his presentation of one place that he supposedly visited and it just didn't come out right. Who knows? Maybe on this upcoming "Chopped" episode, he'll prevail. But as for the "Chopped" judges, I only hope they will realize that with all the pressures involved in the competition, they can give SOME credit due to all of the conestants where it belongs. My only guess is that out of all the remaining contestants, Martita, Josh, Ippy, and Justin may end up being the top 4 winners here, whereas Eric will lose out, timeliness-wise, though not so on the from-scratch approach he uses.

      • Robert Ostrowski says:

        I meant to say CONTESTANTS in the nest-to-last sentence - my typo error in saying "CONESTANTS" - sorry!

  4. A L says:

    Michelle can cook. The most important qualification. I don't like the FN excessive emphasis on looks and personality. I watch for the cooking techniques, not primarily for entertainment.
    Michelle needs a fashionable cheffy wardrobe. Go Michelle!!

    • Jetta says:

      I wouldn't watch a show with Michelle. She looks sloppy, like her clothes are dirty.

      • Alina says:

        Absolutely ridiculous! She's comfortable in her environment and is always smiling. This show is about who can entertain while teaching us viewers a thing or two about cooking! I would most enjoy watching her and look forward to her taking it all and winning! I think she more than has what it takes to have her own show. She has my 10 votes a day!

        • Food Fan says:

          And this is exactly why I dont like the fan-voting thingy.
          Stacking the vote.
          Whoever has the most facebook friends floods the board with votes.
          We should all get to vote once, even if it means I would have to stop voting.
          Maybe we all vote once in the b eginning, once when its down to 4 people and finally between the last 2 contestants.

          • Jerilee says:

            You don't have to Facebook to vote. I agree however that one vote for each team, or a total of three votes per day is more fair. Glad the political aren't run that way!! Can you imagine!

          • Food Fan says:

            (nods).
            But if I was on facebook (I'm not), and I had 30 "friends" and I told 'em to all vote with me for so-n-so, and we can all vote 10 times a day.....you see how this might influence things.
            Maybe It'd be better to only vote ONCE each week, for who should be sent home, instead. Just an idea.
            Tonight, I've been wayching audition-video's of the contestants. Getting a better feel for who is who. Fun to watch. Shows their different personalities and backgrounds.

          • Jerilee says:

            I would hope those fans, and friends, had their own voice and would vote accordingly. My friends don't influence me. I vote independently. I don't Facebook. (don't want all the drama). I think only one vote per team per day, not 10 votes per day, is adequate.

          • Food Fan says:

            Right. I would hope people have their own voice.
            Unfortunately, too many dont.
            Many people have friends who vote like they do, politically..and for more mundane things such Dancing with the Stars. Or they are simply not involved, but they trust their friend who is involved and if its good enough for their friend its good enough for them, etc. Too bad more folks dont have their own mind--here's who I am voting for and here's exactly why.

        • Jetta says:

          A smile doesn't take away from looking dirty - and her clothes the last two weeks were saggy and sloppy. If I were in a restaurant and the chef came out dressed like that, particularly with a nose ring which I know from experience are not always hygienic , I would think twice about eating the food.

          • Jerilee says:

            She is what she is.

          • Food Fan says:

            It strikes me as somewhat odd.
            It seems to me as if some of the folks who emphasize that its-the-food-that-matters....give me the impression that as long as a person has "Chops" they can skate by on everything else. As if appearance doesnt matter.
            No ONE characteristic is all that matters.
            In my opinion, its 4 things:
            1. Knock-yer-socks-off Food to rave about!
            2. Simple, clear, easy-to-follow teaching ability
            3. Genuine-ness w/ a warm smile
            4. Not--too intense, weird or annoying.
            Imagine someone showed up for a job interview anyone else looking like that. What would the boss think?
            You cant just say--I'm qualified--and then dress like nothing matters.

    • Dan's mom says:

      Tucker, that comment was crude. Michelle could use a fashion make over and still remain true to herself.

      • Jerilee says:

        A fashion make-over, I believe, would change things. I would not allow the real, as I am, person to show through. I accept her the was she is. It's the "real deal"' not some made up image.

        • Food Fan says:

          Hmm. What if anyone at all were dressed like that and were applying for a position as a loan officer in a bank?

          Oh yes. I know. You could say, but this isnt a bank, its cooking.
          Fine, Maybe if someone were working at Denny's in the kitchen it might be one thing. But this is public on TV.
          Look at those who *are* a success. Do you see Giada, or Paula Deen, or Mrs. Neely or Ina Garten looking like this? And suppose they started to---would people praise them and say they shoulda done it alot sooner? Somehow, I dont think so.

          • Food Fan says:

            ...and just to let you know...the every-hair-perfectly-in-place with a tight shirt buttoned-up to the adam's apple with a bow-tie....doesnt do it for me, either. Yes, you can go to much the other way, too.
            Personally, I prefer business-casual, or even INFORMAL-but-neat to what strikes me more as a street-person or construction-site type of look.
            I am NOT talking about WHO someone is, or whether they are or aren't a good person. Not at all. They may be and have a WONDERFUL personality!--but still be dressed "inappropriately." Hundreds of businesses have their styes. And on TV, Image is a factor. Certainly not the only one, but ratings and public perception matter.
            Also, i watched his video. Is it just an illusion from bad lighting or does it look as if JUSTIN might have red lipstick on in one of his videos?
            People can be who they are, and dress how they want. People may vote for them, or vote for someone else.

    • Amy says:

      Cooking is not the most important qualification because no one gets to taste your food on the other side of the screen! You have to have a memorable personality and attitude! (Which most of the contestants dont have might i add) And by the way I don't know whos voting for Michelle but she looks so much like a guy its gross. :(

      • Jerilee says:

        Sorry to disagree. Cooking is important. If I watch a show and try to make what they made it better taste nearly as good as they say, otherwise I'm not going to watch!! Personality and attitude are important to make you want to watch, but if their cooking is only mediocre, what's the point?

        • Food Fan says:

          I acknowledge yer point about if the food is bad then whats the point. I'm just saying it cant ONLY be the food, or ONLY be a good smile, etc. See my "total package" comment further down in on here. Too many contestants are good in one area and then try to act as if the rest doesnt matter much.
          Someone could be smokin'-hot to look at, but if they dont know what they're doin' food-wise, like you said--whats the point?. On the other hand, someone could be a 5-star Chef who has won awards, and if they act like Penny from last season or I see them with super-tattoos and hair flying in 8 directions, I'm just not gonna bother. There are plenty of *other* awesome chefs out there.

      • FanFare57 says:

        Whether I can taste the food or not isn't the issue- the judges taste it. For me, cooking expertly is the number 1 thing for a food show - hello!. The chef's appearance is obviously important in the sense that the cook shouldn't look unkempt or lack proper hygiene. The personality will improve over time (as it did with Giada, among other stars-in-the-making).

    • vert2013 says:

      If she's in a commercial kitchen she's going to be wearing a chefs uniform, not her street clothes so she'll look just like everyone else in the kitchen. Cooking is one of the few fields where looks are the least important aspect. Who cares what they look like as long as their sanitary and they know how to cook.

      • Food Fan says:

        Lots of people care.
        Many of them last year, thought that Vic Vegas and his tattoos were just too much. And they said so, right here in these forums.
        No, it isnt just looks. Certainly not. Someone could be smokin' hot and if they dont know what they're doin' food-wise, then whats the point? True! On the other hand, someone could be a Chef in a successful restaurant and may have won awards, but if they act like Penny from last season or are "too intense" in their appearance, alot of people just wont watch. No one has to wear a Tux while cooking. I wouldnt want that either. But I wouldnt want a "grundge" look from a male or female. Also watch Justin's video when he met Alton. Check out that Black shirt with the skeleton bones on it. "Its a job Interview, man! 1st impressions count!". Perhaps Alton didnt care. But I woulda never done it.

  5. T. W. says:

    What is with the vote count? How can it change so much in a short time? This morning Linkie was in first this afternoon she is in 4th.
    I wish they would show the actual numbers of votes not just what the % of the vote is.

    • Food Fan says:

      I vote that they disable it. Whoever has the most facebook friends "gets ahead in the Polls." They should track by IP address and only 1 vote per person. Or maybe there should be ONE mid-term vote when there are 6 people left, then one final vote between last 2 contestants.

      • Jetta says:

        I absolutely ABHOR the thought that fan vote is going to decide the winner this year. It will be about looks rather than actual talent.

    • Jerilee says:

      Perhaps it is reset daily? You are allowed 10 votes per day.

    • Maria says:

      I totally agree!

  6. Food Fan says:

    Its all about "the Total package".
    Having "Chops" doesnt mean you can appearance doesnt matter.
    And looking great on camera, doesnt mean you can just be a so-so Cook.
    And even if you were both, you'd still be able top explain it simply and "engage" the audience! Its all 3.

  7. Rueben says:

    Congratulations Team Giada!

  8. BooRad0859 says:

    You cannot put a cherry tomato, mozzarella and some basil on a skewer and be allowed to move on, winning team be damned.

    My biggest problem with the team format is that they will knock people off to keep the teams even. If someone from Bobby's team had been knocked off last week, there is no way Kara gets knocked off last night.

    • Tucker says:

      Caprese salad on a stick..........BORING!!!......I'm with you. Especially when you consider last season's first elimination. The woman prepared some sort of a green bean dish I believe and Bob described it as boring and not worthy.........and this was?????

    • Jetta says:

      They wouldn't have knocked off Justin anyway - did you miss the way he made Susie giggle?

      • beachinfrizzy says:

        Justin annoyed me last week but he made great strides (with me, anyway) this time. I thought he asked good questions at the Bialy shop and his 'crostini' were well received... got a chuckle out of his ruffly salmon colored 70's prom tux shirt shirt though!

    • beachinfrizzy says:

      I thought the same thing...did he actually COOK anything (oh...steamed artichokes. Big whoop).

      And why was Ippy sternly warned that he wasn't allowed to take eggplant parmesana from the deli (duh, Giada, did you really think he was just going to buy a tray of it and pass it off as his own?), but it was OK for Ivan to use ready-made mooootzz-a-LELL-a (eyeroll) instead of making his own or at least transforming or working with it instead of sticking it as-is onto a toothpick? Whatever would the Chopped judges think? ; )

  9. Betty says:

    I bet next week Team Giada loses so that the teams stay even.Everyting is rigged anymore.

    • rwests says:

      I thought Team Bobby had immunity this week..What happened to that, or did I misunderstand the rules?

      • Food Fan says:

        I dont like this immunity thing or any contestant surviving even though they did bad, just because the team they are on did good.
        I dont like the idea of just competing against a few other contestants on yer team rather than all of the contestants.
        I DO like the mentoring Im seeing. At least so far. Hoping it can stay un-rushed and positive, rather than sarcastic and snappy.
        It should be more about the contestants than the coaching, though.

      • ksponar says:

        Nope. Team Giada won the challenge so they got "immunity"

    • ksponar says:

      Frankly, I'd glad if that happen. Josh needs to GO.

  10. Food Fan says:

    On the whole, I'm glad to see this new group of contestants. Seems like a more likable bunch than some previous seasons. Less freaky and more mainstream (well, for the most part.)
    Also nice to see *less* restaurant owners.
    I'm hoping we can have less drama this season. We dont need any more "Penny's" or loud immature types (remembering last year). Perhaps its all part of TV....but its just gotten all-too-predictable with seasons having "the cast of characters":
    the Bully
    the shy, soft-spoken wimp
    the fast-talking nervous one
    the tough-guy/street-person
    the weirdo
    the health-fitness buff
    the unorganized ditz .....its just too predictable.

    Good to see this year's group.
    Just gimme: knock-yer-socks-off food
    from a good explainer
    with a warm smile
    who isnt irritating...and I'll watch. Happily!