Winter got you down? Well, just think: By the time this Top Chef season is over, spring will almost be here. And if you live-blog the show with us each week, this dreary winter will pass all the more quickly. So join us!

By my estimation, this season's finale will air on March 16, which will be damn close to spring, anyway. At least the crocuses will be in bloom by then. And here, by the way, is how to help make this live blog bloom, in case you haven't joined us before: tune your television to Top Chef, which airs on Bravo at 10 pm Eastern; use the comments section below to post a running commentary on the episode as it unfolds; and hang onto your hat as fun and hilarity ensues!

Here are a few highlights from the fun-and-hilarity-filled live blog we held last week:

  • When designer Isaac Mizrahi showed up to decide who had the best-looking food, commenter Fry_Bread_Power noted: "This makes sense—the fashion world is a place where food is to be seen and not eaten."
  • We were all impressed by Rao's bartender Nick Valoumis' flashy vest—which commenter DennyCrane likened to "a disco ball made wearable." The bartender's nickname—"Nicky Vest"—also inspired commenter The_Obvious to coin a new nickname for Mike Isabella: "Mikey Neck."
  • Mike I. was told that this pasta was "improperly sauced"—something the commenters who participate in this live blog could never be accused of.
  • Tre was forced to pack his pecs and go, to the dismay of the many commenters who admired his…er, winning form. In fact, when Tre spoke earlier in the episode about the importance of "eating with your eyes," several commenters confessed that they'd been doing that to him since the start of the season.

Here are a few highlights from last week's live blog. And speaking of highlights, here are a few from the previews of tonight's episode:

  • During the quickfire challenge, Angelo will make a fondue so screwed up that he'll be forced to throw it out. This is what's known in the culinary world as a "fondon't."
  • The guest judge will be late-night host Jimmy Fallon—apparently for no other reason than NBC owns Bravo. Maybe the challenge will be to see who can make their food taste the funniest?
  • Mike I, who is fond of uttering tautophrases like "It is what it is," will unveil a new one tonight: "Winners are gonna win, and losers are gonna lose." Let's hope he's right about that last part, and we finally see the last of him tonight.

OK, gang, fun-and-hilarity time is almost here. Get a grip on your hat, and I'll see you down in the comments!

[Image via Shutterstock]