No, no, no Gene. No thumbs up. You served deconstructed surf-and-turf sushi at Gail Simmons's bridal shower, then neglected to tell the guests how to eat it. We won't reveal here whether or not Gene was eliminated for his misstep, but you can read all about it...
Note: We reveal the winner and loser below.
And yes, we are going to talk about the big surprise ending. But first, here's what we learned last night:
1. Hooray- a new spin on the name-that-ingredient challenge. We do love the quickfire where chefs have to identify a mystery ingredient, but in this season, they mixed it up. Chefs went head to head and basically bid on how many ingredients they could name in a prepared sauce. We think salt and pepper should have been off-limits, but it was still a good judge of palates.
2. There's no peanut butter in mole sauce. That was Carla's first guess in the final round. As opposed to, oh, say, salt. Nope, Carla went with peanut butter (and lost).
3. Carla is not giving up her cooky mantle anytime soon. The "Hootie-hoo" call she was doing up and down the aisles of Whole Foods? Priceless. Apparently this is how Carla and her husband find each other in a store. One yells, "Hootie," and the other responds, "Hoo." Too funny.
4. Stefan may be bossy, but he's often right. Ok, he was wrong about Jeff's heirloom tomato sorbet (everyone loved it), but he was soooo right about women not wanting to make their own food at a bridal shower, in reference to Gene's sushi rolls. We think the demonization of Stefan is unwarranted, so far. We still like him.
5. There's no food that's blue. So says Tom Colicchio. The teams all had a theme—old, new, borrowed, blue—and Tom said no food is actually blue. "Blueberries are purple." Hmm.
6. Italian accents make food taste better! Fabio could have put a plate of Spaghetti-O's in front of those women and gotten Oohs and Aahs. We also think the "blue" team's sea bass looked pretty good. It seemed the judges just needed another losing team at the table, so that all of the criticism wasn't focused on Gene, Danny, and Carla.
7. Don't sneak mushrooms into your teammate's dish. Carla is a dark horse, we think. Her salad was nice until Danny put mushrooms in without asking. And then he stood firm on his decision. His taste level just seemed to underwhelm the judges, and he was eliminated.
8. Jamie was not robbed. Radhika was! Ok, let's discuss. Ariane won for making a perfectly cooked lamb—which, by the way, Jamie was eager to take out of the oven too soon. Yes, Jamie had the Indian idea and the special spice for the carrots. But Radhika was the one who marinated the lamb that Ariane cooked! And it was her cuisine.
It was pretty funny to watch Ariane's face when she won. She was as shocked as everyone else. Are the producers just trying to keep it interesting? Or did she really deserve it? What do you think?