Rocco DiSpirito went big for the finale of Rocco's Dinner Party tonight, tasking the competing chefs with cooking a 65th birthday dinner for the legendary Liza Minnelli. She Sandra Bernhard, Kenneth Cole, Sam Harris, and a few others gathered to sample the fare at the two separate dinner parties the competing chefs threw in her honor.
From the get-go, Liza was charming, gracious, and entertaining. She told stories of spending time with Salvador Dali and was as quick with the compliments for the chefs as she was with the wit. I don't think she had one complaint about any dish that was set before her; she seemed to enjoy everything. Bernhard had plenty of complaints to make up for it though.
After cutting off a chunk of his thumb in the beginning of the show, chef Frank was cool and calm in preparing his party. He took a simple route and prepared only three courses, but all were amazing. He started with a curried squash soup, followed by a beef stew, and finally presented a floating cloud dessert that involved meringue and creme anglaise and blew everyone away.
Lucia was the other competitor, and she was a manic little ball of Italian explosions. An opera singer by day, she didn't stop talking/singing the whole time she cooked up an entire six-course meal. There were chocolate-covered strawberries to start, artichokes with a dipping sauce about which everyone raved, filet mignon, and more. Most of it was well received ... well, at least by everyone except Bernhard. She thought the strawberries were tacky, the artichokes shouldn't have been canned, and found a host of other problems with the food. She was definitely a tougher guest than Minnelli.
In the end, Lucia just spread herself too thin and attempted too much. Her food was too rushed, and Rocco toasted Frank as the winner. Lucia put up a much better fight than you would have thought though.
And that's it for this season of Rocco's Dinner Party. I can't say I'll feel a huge void in my life like I (sadly) do when some shows come to an end, but it has been an enjoyable season that has offered plenty of dinner party inspiration and entertainment, and I'd like to see it come back for a second one.
Would you like to see Rocco's Dinner Party come back for a second season?
Posted by Julie Ryan Evans
on August 18, 2011