Last Chance Kitchen 9: Josie vs Kristen

It’s grudge match that was written in the stars: popular favorite Top Chef Kristen Kish, who took the fall for Josie Smith-Malave’s poor time management and insubordination in last week’s Restaurant Wars, faces Josie one last time in the Last Chance Kitchen after Josie was booted for her greasy fried chicken.

“We can take a minute to be friendly about the challenge, yeah?” Josie asks, acknowledging the tension in the car as she and Kristen drive from the Last Chance Kitchen to Pike Market. (It’s a hybrid Toyota Camry, by the way. Kristen is driving.)

“Totally,” smiles Kristen, always graceful under pressure.

They are on there way to Seattle’s Pike Market, each instructed to pick out the nicest salmon they can find. After some antics with the fishmongers – is that a stunt fish Kristen kisses or fresh catch? – they return to the kitchen, where Tom finishes explaining the challenge: they have 30 minutes to break down their whole salmon, portion it into ten identical pieces, and create ten composed dishes.

The clock ticks down. The eliminated chefs wince right along with Tom as they watch Kristen and Josie inexpertly butcher the fish. CJ calls out encouragement to Josie – was he sensing hostility toward her from someone else?

Kristen’s salmon is prepared with crispy skin and pickled pineapple, pickled raisins, shaved cauliflower, and creme fraiche. It’s not a perfect dish; the raisins don’t plump

Josie’s made fennel pollen-dusted salmon with fennel, radish, and tarragon salad. The fennel pollen drew raves for the lovely aroma, but she dropped a piece of salmon on the floor and they were overcooked.

“They both have their strengths and weaknesses,” Bart murmurs after the tasting.

Does Kristen get the revenge she deserves? Or does Josie pull off another upset? Don’t wait, you can watch Last Chance Kitchen it right here to see:

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