The final Top Chef Seattle Season 10 Last Chance Kitchen began with Tom Colicchio introducing the two eliminated chefs from last week’s final Save A Chef battle: CJ Jacobson and Lizzie Binder. Chef CJ was kicked off along with Tyler Wiard back in episode 5′s “Pike Place Pickle,” famously and angrily observing afterward, ”It’s not ‘Top Team Chef;’ it’s ‘Top Chef.’” He went on to win seven Last Chance Kitchen battles in a row, losing only against Kristen Kish after her Restaurant Wars elimination, and along the way won a Twitter following loyal enough to keep him in the running, even in a close race against Stefan Richter.
But was his following strong enough to crown him the Save A Chef king? Chef Lizzie was much more in the eyes of the network viewing audience, lasting all the way to the final four. She was eliminated because of the lack of seasoning on her sourdough and salmon sandwich in episode 14′s “Kings of Alaska.” As she said in her Last Chance Kitchen, she understood why she was lost. The challenge had stirred up bittersweet memories of her father, a fisherman who recently passed away. “You cook from your heart, and there it was. All that sadness, out there.”
Lizzie was close to redemption, turning out an excellent salmon dish that Tom took quite a shine to, but in the end Kristen took the Last Chance Kitchen win. Lizzie moved on to the Save A Chef contest, for one last opportunity to try and get into that finale.
Back to the Last Chance Kitchen. Tom brought CJ and Lizzie in front of the camera and announced . . . Lizzie was the winner, garnering 61% of the vote. CJ, to his credit, appeared to be genuinely happy for her and left after his 30 seconds or so of camera time.
Josh is their third competitor, having been kicked off for what Gayle called her “veiny torchon.” Ugh. He was a bit distracted himself; his wife gave birth to their child midway through episode 14.
The final Last Chance Kitchen challenge: make Tom a great plate of food. Josh takes venison, Lizzie chooses black cod, and Kristen draws her inspiration from the semolina flour to make pasta. No one can find garlic.
Kristen’s dish: semolina orecchiette with pomegranate, apple, and fresh herbs. Lizzie made black cod with black pepper vinegar, savoy cabbage, and spaetzle. Josh made venison with coriander and black pepper cure, kale, and shaved carrot.
The verdict: Josh was eliminated because of his undercooked venison; at plating it appeared almost raw.
Tom says his final decision is tough – both chefs made excellent, well-balance, flavorful dishes. The stakes were high; the winner walks right onto the Top Chef Finale. And the winner is . . .
Watch the full Last Chance Kitchen here:
And just for fun here’s a peek behind the scenes:
Can’t wait to see what happens next: Here’s a preview of next week’s Episode 16:
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