After three months of heavy promotion, Food Network finally aired what was pegged to be the greatest Iron Chef ever. The secret ingredient—White House vegetables—was apparently of "national importance." Here are four things we learned during the special.
They paired chefs Mario Batali and Emeril Lagasse against Bobby Flay and White House Executive Chef Cristeta Comerford in an overblown battle royale. It was built up to be the greatest food special of all time. However, there were some missteps.
Michelle Obama barely was barely on the show.
She was promoted ad nauseum as the "very special guest." Well that "very special guest" was on the show for a very special 2 minutes. How could they promote her as the guest and not even have her as a judge? The Food Network pulled a bait-and-switch on this one, and we fell for it.
The White House Garden is way better than your crappy garden.
The White House's garden is fresher, crisper, tastier, and more varied than your boring, flavorless, weed infested excuse for a garden. Your garden's eggplant? Blech. The White House has Japanese eggplant, jerk. And you know it's fresh as shit. Your sweet potatoes might as well be rotten lemons compared to The White House's. And believe me, they made it abundantly clear throughout the show how great the Obama's garden was.
Emeril is so busy opening up his 300th restaurant he forgot how to cook.
Not only did he take an obvious backseat to an obviously annoyed Mario Batali, but he was a sweaty, disgusting mess in doing so. No amount of BAMs was going to make Emeril look like a capable chef. Instead he just looked like a glorified sous chef who was in way over his head.
And he sweats. A LOT.
Jane Seymour is vapid and annoying.
This was the super special White House Iron Chef, so you would think they would roll-out some top notch celebrity judges. The types of judges that have a deep knowledge and appreciation of food. Not an annoying British actress who played a medicine woman 10 years ago and pretends to be an artist. And no Jeffrey Steingarten? The best judge on any cooking competition ever? What a travesty.