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Charlotte woman graduates from Bravo's "Chef Academy"

Last night was the finale of Bravo's "Chef Academy," a show that started off pretty interesting and then lost me pretty fast. In fact, the only reason I stuck with it to the end was to see how Carissa from Charlotte fared. I'm happy to report that she graduated.

In fact, everyone graduated except for Suzanne, the sweet but brassy Orange County housewife. But then, last week's episode with the whole fish allergy drama, seemed like an exercise in breaking Suzanne down just so that someone would fail. I mean, Novelli Academy can't be considered a very legitimate cooking school if everyone passes, right? The problem is, this is television, and Suzanne was probably everyone's favorite character. I mean, student.

But back to Carissa.

Chef Academy: Emmanuel gets naked, Tracie gets creepy

I don't know what to say about "Chef Academy" lately. Last week Tracie made that graphically phallic bread (and won top prize) and this week, she pretty much molested the butt-naked Emmanuel at her Michelin Star dinner. Granted, Emmanuel probably didn't mind, but ... My eyes! My eyes!

Okay, the episode started with Sarah, who failed her bread test last week because she can't follow directions, going to Chef Novelli and asking for a do-over. The other students were incredulous. Suzanne called her a "crybaby titty mouse." Chef Novelli probably couldn't say "crybaby titty mouse" in French, so he just told her no.

Chef Academy: X-rated bread and spicy smokes

I'm still confused as to why "Chef Academy" made such a mess of last week's pass/fail reveal. In last week's episode, Chef Novelli (left) told the students that those passing the test would attend a Hollywood party as their reward. Then he sent three students to the party and the others home. But last night, he told those seven dismissed students that only two of them had actually failed. Huh??

Well, at least Carissa from Charlotte was not one of those failing, so she still only had one fail going into last night's bread challenge.

And who would have thought that bread shaped like cigarettes and genitalia would win the top honors?

Chef Academy: Novelli gets his sneak on

We're still keeping track of Carissa from Charlotte as she struggles through her culinary education at Bravo's "Chef Academy."

The problem is, I don't even know for sure if she passed or failed this week, though I have my suspicions. During deliberations with Chef Kitchen, Chef Novelli (left) commented that there were two fails, but then at the end, he denied five students invitations to the Hollywood party, and Carissa was one of them. So maybe she did fail. Again.

Chef Academy: Don't bang the meringue

So far, our NC student on Bravo's "Chef Academy" isn't doing too well. In last week's premiere, Carissa Loughead St. Aubin of Charlotte failed her first challenge when Chef Jean-Christophe Novelli (left) found a hair in her dish. Lucky for her, the first fail didn't count.

Last night Carissa kept the hair out of her dish, but apart from that, didn't make a lot of progress either.

But if Carissa learns nothing else, she told us last night that she has learned this: Don't bang the meringue.

Well, that's something. Oh wait, she also learned that her punctually-challenged fellow student is a porn star, but I'm not sure that's knowledge she can actually use back home in Charlotte.

Charlotte newlywed studies at Bravo's "Chef Academy"

Bravo’s latest entry to its line up of mouth-watering reality shows is “Chef Academy,” which follows Michelin-winning French chef Jean Christophe Novelli, who comes to Venice, California to start a culinary institute.

And when it premieres tonight at 11, among the 9 students he seeks to teach and train is Carissa Loughhead St. Aubin, a Charlotte newlywed who says she’s ‘nauseous with excitement’ to see the first episode.

The show is a little different than “Top Chef” or “Hell’s Kitchen,” or the other do-or-die elimination food shows. On this show, students get three chances to fail before they flunk out of the school. But while Novelli, a prankster who reveals a deep love of the TV character “Columbo,” isn’t the cussing tyrant that is Gordon Ramsay, St. Aubin says he’s not a pushover either.

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