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Hell's Kitchen season 8: down to the final four how about a re-cap

Hell's Kitchen poster

Written by : published Sunday 28th November 2010

Hell's Kitchen season 8: down to the final four how about a re-cap main image

Gordon Ramsay's Hell's Kitchen Season 7 has a prize of a $250,000 salary at the Los Angeles, California downtown L. A. market, a Marriott hotel eatery. This season's Hell's Kitchen win also comes with a gig being traveling representative of Rosemount estate wine. The signature "Fire" song from Hell's Kitchens stays but the intro is like Gulliver's Travels. Chef Ramsay is the giant tied to the ground while Lilliputian contestants torture him with food.


13 chefs compete

Boris is looking good after the sushi challenge but Emily and Melissa are hosing the red team. Curtis showed losing style and Vinny showed a hint of things to come. Overweight Indian Raj completely played the wild card by talking trash to everything and everyone. Raj is angry because Vinny managed the dining room by recommending the side orders be skipped for speed of service. Ramsay blows up when he finds out.  The blue team, traditionally the men, is a  lot of talk, while red team, usually women, has personality problems. Nona is a strength and so is Jillian. Gail shows mixed promise and so does Rob.

Ramsay orders medical checks on the contestant chefs. The EMT (Emergency Medical Technician) feed challenge was shockingly underperformed. Ramsay  may have more of a dumper basket crew this season than he thought, and the anger I neither overplayed or feigned. Emily burns the bacon, hitting at future issues. The men screw up the bacon and eggs and the women deliver and win. A lot bad food gets tried to be sent out. Ramsay screams "I know there's nothing wrong with your eyes I had it checked this morning". Curtis is probably voted off before Raj as a mistake.


12 chefs compete

Trevor gets slammed as Russell continues to try to take a proactive approach to managing the blue team. Raj is gone and the contest gets serious. Trevor won the ravioli challenge but felt baked by his team. Melissa answers Chef Ramsay's question about makes nine times nine with "six". Sabrina,  a 22 year old chef,  got aggressive when Melissa spoke up. Louis the camp chef got booted from the blue team.


11 chefs compete

The Prom episode. The retro menu for the Beverly Hills High School prom doesn't start well. The blue team (men) lose the challenge and have to decorate hell's kitchen. Boris and Russell lock horns while Vinny lies low. Sabrina tests her team's patience after being put up 4 times for elimination. Sabrina is a prep chef but doesn't like to prep. Gail says of Sabrina "That bitch has nine lives'.  The choices by the Prom Committee are not universally loved by the chefs. Melissa cooks 23 steaks at once for no reason. Russell chose a time to shine and the men win. Emily burnt her last boat and exited the contest.


10 chefs compete

Trevor is assigned to the red team to give them leadership and he is not thrilled. Melissa is given a blue jacket to the men's chagrin. The dreaded salad challenge brings Rob to the fore winning with a scallop salad. Rob says he 's screwed because he doesn't know salads and then wins a photo shoot with Bon Appetite. Rob is last to the pass and gets judged by the Bon Appetite food editor. Nona's quail salad looks like roadkill.

Sabrina's salad reminds the editor "of a hot dog". Melissa leaves too much fat on the duck and uses Roquefort cheese that overwhelms. Trevor and Russell continue to chew the scenery. Sabrina and Melissa have an all out war. Service is shockingly bad and everybody loses it, especially Boris and even Sabrina and Nona fail huge. Melissa again wastes an enormous amount of food and gets drained away at the end of the episode.


9 chefs compete part 1

The ingredients gamble happens with alphabet roulette. The name-an-ingredient game gets tough when Trevor picks "rutabaga".  He subsequently makes very bitter rutabaga chips. The girls have all vegetables until Nona picks salmon. Boris picks Miso which deflates the men's blue team. But Boris (an L.A.chef) makes a beautiful miso sauce. The blue team gets happy when Russell picks  asparagus to go with the yams but Rob under-cooks them and adds no seasoning. Nona dumps a stick of butter into the cauliflower puree, almost losing the challenge. The red team wins by a hair and goes to Las Vegas, where comedians Penn and Teller invade their penthouse suite to give them gift certificates.

The losing men's team has to peel thousands of potatoes. Ramsay has a food feed for families with kids from a carnival. Included in the Hell's Kitchen dining room is his own wife Tana and the four Ramsay kids.  Kids don't like waiting and the chefs tank in the kitchen on just about everything but fries. Stunning anger from chef Ramsay, who watches as another service tanks. The frenzy of speed and volume of orders kills all momentum. Sabrina and Trevor war in the kitchen and Boris sweats into his station. Ramsay chooses nobody to go home because dinner service was finished.


9 chefs compete part 2

This is very serious drama as Hell's Kitchen has its 100th dinner service. Episode begins with the shopping challenge, teams cruise the market for 4 courses for $60. Russell takes point for the men while Sabrina vainly whimpers about lamb and lentils. The judges for this challenge are possibly the best ever, a panel astounding in its caliber. Fine dining is the key. The owner of Campanile, Mark Peel, judges one course. Sophie Gayot of Gayot guidebooks judges another. The lead food blogger from Yelp judges the last. Judges apprise in dollar amounts the dishes. The chef from Nobu judges the final dish. Sabrina's lentils with lamb wins over Vinny's dish. Red team wins.

Red team gets a sailboat cruise and waterfront hotel dinner. Losing blue team has to fumigate wash down the kitchens. The big dinner comes and big names pepper the dining room, including Paris Hilton, Hollywood names like Jerry Springer, and other celebrity chefs appear, and two stars form Glee as well. Past winners of HK sit in the chef's tables in the kitchens and watch the drama. A tiered cake with photo icing of real scenes from Hell's Kitchen in the past is a stunning dining room centerpiece. Rock, Christina, Holly, and Danny show in a limo. (Holly got all cash as a prize because her visa was denied to the UK, Danny resigned form his Atlantic City job after a few months).

A very proud Chef Ramsay gets completely embarrassed by the terrible performance by both teams. Nona and Boris lead off with appetizers. Nona tries to deliver a refire a risotto off at the pass. Ramsay barks her down for that. Boris struggles to deliver at all. Rob slides over for Boris.  Famous names crowd the dining room and Sabrina serves complementary caviar. But food moves at a snail's pace if at all. The women pull out as the men's blue team epic fails. Trevor rubs everyone the wrong way.

Service is a spine tingling disaster. Russell continues to ride Boris. Trevor gets in the weeds fast despite Jillian's help and his gnocchi get targeted for ridicule. Vinny's chewy lobster initiated an ugly losing streak. Trevor and Sabrina spar over garnishing. the entire red team works garnish under chef Ramsay's direction. Russell shuts down helping Rob, and Rock and Holly spot the problem, while Rob flounders in the weeds. Red team fails with Trev on garnish, and Ramsay kicks him out. "They expected me to be Superman and Clark Kent showed up".

Rob delivers the "forgotten chicken" finally and it is pink. Ramsay erupts. Late in the competition, unusually Hell's Kitchen dinner services are not good.  From the blue team Boris gets chosen to leave. Trevor falls under the spotlight and Chef Ramsay chews him out. Boris leaves inspired but disappointed.


8 chefs compete

The cliffhanger of Trevor is solved by him being sent back to the men's team. The next day's  tasting includes stuff bought from a gas station, a food truck, and Chinese delivery. Room service menu is the focus. But the chefs can't taste the convenience and are embarrassed. The blind taste test always is good for a spectacle.  The extremely "seasoned" chefs make ludicrous choices and Chef Ramsay is astounded at how badly the palates on both teams fare. 

Gail identifies black truffles as watercress. Rob identifies fillet mignon as chicken. Rob and Sabrina identify cheddar cheese as American and provolone. Smoked mussels they identify as octopus and it goes downhill from there. The identification of chicken as beef is always laughable. Non and Trev missed pear, calling it apple. Trev missed what scallops taste like although he has cooked them twice. Nona fares the best, correctly identifying endive and Trev calls it arugula, Rob loses 0/4.

With the fine palate comes fine prizes. The women's red team get dinner at L. A.'s Restaurant 14 and a $2k shopping spree. The men get to sort through the trash and clean the kitchens. Russell says "I wanted to throw Rob out with the trash but I can't pick him up". They get bread and cheese singles sandwiches. The women enjoy luxurious new clothes and critical advice with dinner with Chef Ramsay. But after prep, Trev gets sandbagged on the Blue team's prep rotation.

Service sends Chef Ramsay into a rage. Rob heaps curry on the scallops and loses his way. His under delivery brings Chef Ramsay to the point of bringing him outside for a chat during service. Nona chokes on the meat station and argues with Ramsay and gets kicked out. Vinny burns a "rhinoceros" egg on the spinach and gets thrown to the curb. Russell pulled a "forgotten chicken', guaranteed for a pass out of the service. Rob turns in raw fish time after time and get the boot as well. Trev alone on the blue kitchen finishes service. Rob gets a hefty spoonful of EXIT.


7 chefs compete

Rob's boot sets a three member blue team against a 4 member red team. The communication and timing challenge trades off cooking duties for the same dinner. The Russell/Trev/Vinny chemistry tries but some things are missed, like Trev reminding anyone to put the lobster in to cook. He even misses putting it in the second pass. Gail contributes little, and Sabrina puts the salmon in next pass. Russell's clumpy and bland pasta gets a fail. Both teams fail to exchange the green bean cooking messages.

The red team girls almost have it, but Jillian skids the salmon all over the floor jerking it from the oven. A panicked Jillian blames Gail, who missed cooking the salmon. Vinny realizes the lobster is uncooked and dumps the tail in boiling water, improvising a lobster finish. The bland pasta would have  given it to the women, but Jillian's floored salmon throws the game. Chef judges the mens blue team for the win and the girls get the worst challenge. they will be humping Hell's Kitchen delivery sacks from all the trucks.

The men get a shopping at Sur la Table, a killer cookery store. The women suffer from the first lost challenge in a long while. Jillian keeps an uncooked salmon grudge against Gail. Nerdy Trevor runs out screaming  'I love buying stuff, I love buying stuff!". The men's team won the reward and were hosted by Los Angeles chef, Josiah Citrin. The blue team is treated in style to a gourmet meal at Melisse with Chef Ramsay.

The inventing a menu challenge is next. Russell's ideas are too lofty for Vinny and Trevor. Russell contributes little to the blue team menu. Later he awakes to find Vinny and Trev in the sauna drinking wine. He hears them talking about them. Russell blows up on them and they wake up hung over. The prep session for the Blue team is ugly as a stewing Russell looks on. The imagery of a pot boiling over is not wasted.

That night service is appalling. Vinny sacrifices a key table over a little lamb. Even the Maitre' D is asking Vinny if "he knows who this guy is". The red menu gets overwhelmingly ordered from. It's crickets in the blue team kitchen. Except for one table. One guest is...Josiah Citrin, (of Melisse) who waits in the dining room of Hell's Kitchen later that night in vain for his food. From the Blue team. Interested diners see quite a fireworks display. Matt Cassel, quarterback for Kansas City, is dining (waiting) and mentions he might go talk to Ramsay.

Chef Ramsay nearly poaches himself in anger over the Blue team. Cooking lamb that is not raw is Vinny's challenge. Chef Ramsay screams "it's still got its fur on". Ramsay's voice rises until he sounds like a little girl. But then Gail starts a marathon wasting lobster. Gail then burns 6 lobster tries. The 7th try at the dish fails. Gail gets kicked out of the kitchen. Sabrina shines on the meat station. Chef Citrin is still unhappy. Vinny is on the chopping block.

Chef Ramsay has to hand out black jackets to six of the final seven left, on the back of a terrible service. All of the women try to vote Trev out. Then it is down to Gail and Vinny. Gail points out she has the trust and faith of her team. Gail gets the black jacket that takes the chef contest into the individual contention. Vinny gets booted. Vinny's loser performance reveals that Ramsay thought he was much better.


6 chefs compete

The Hell's Kitchen Massacre come in this episode. But first, the individual final six chefs celebrate getting black jackets with limited edition wine. But Trev stews because he knows all the guns are pointed at him. The first challenge is the first impression amuse-bouche, a dish that is a one bite wonder. This challenge that wants the fine dining touch of the imagination, done in thirty minutes for taste and presentation. Half the score comes from presentation.

Ludo Lefebvre of Ludobites is one of the judges. For this, judging appearance and taste numerically will also be from multi-Michelin star chefs like Quinn and Karen Hatfield of Hatfield's, the owner of Jar, Suzanne Tracht, and the  2 Michelin star of the Providence restaurant chef. These are world class chefs on a par with Chef Gordon Ramsay himself. Trev chooses frog's legs and Sabrina imagines a chemistry on a personal level between herself and Monsieur Lefebvre. This is hilarious. And poor Trevor goes down in flames hard.

Gail clocks an 87 with a sesame crunchy spring roll. Sabrina gets tongue tied and her voice over rolls all over the map of Eros. Don't miss Sabrina's interview spliced with this segment. Getting back to the cooking, Sabrina scores a lowly 70. Jillian's grilled pita bread in lemon cream bores the chefs and gets a 65. Ludo says "My mom can do that".  Nona's shrimp and grits loses out with a 67.  "Sometimes cumin reminds me of body odor" says one judge. Russell kills with a himachi crudo in a lemon oil with cut radishes. He scores perfect 50 for presentation and 50 for taste. Trevor, a Chicago bartender, and his frog legs just gets laughed at.

Russell wins and takes Gail the runner up with him for the reward. It's a funny moment because Russell has worked hard not to make friends. Russell wins a trip to the prize of Hell's Kitchen. The L. A. market chef, Kerry Simon,  tours them both around the kitchen. They dine while the other black jacket contestants clean the HK premises. As Russell and Gail have been two of the strongest cooks in the competition, there is the feeling this is the not the last time one of them will be in the place.

With a taste of the finish line, Russell and Gail rejoin the other chefs for dinner service. To further motivate the chefs, Chef Gordon Ramsay lifts a covered silver dish with stacked decks of cash worth $250,000. This is the final salary prize for winning Hell's Kitchen. the final 6 are defining who is going to win. Will it be Russell, the fine dining expert, or Gail the smarty? Will Sabrina pull a wild-card, or will Jillian start to shine? Can Trevor end in anything but disaster.

Russell takes meat. Trev and Sabrina take appetizers. Sabrina fries the risotto, which puts the kitchen in the weeds. It never comes out. Gail sent 7 ruined lobsters to the pass last week so naturally she is on the fish station again. Nona is chosen to do Steak Diane table side. Gail is on garnish, starts losing chef's respect fast. Sabrina and Trevor cannot team successfully and the kitchen is stopped cold. Steak Diane that Nona is putting aflame in the dining room must be matched with en trees from the kitchen.

Sabrina falls under the angry gaze of Chef Ramsay. "Fight back, you little bitch". Sabrina's performance is so poor that Ramsay is stunned that salads are coming back. Gail turns in grilled salmon swimming poached sauce. Russell then hands Beef Wellington to the pass undercooked. None of these chefs look worthy of making the second week let alone Hell's Kitchen week 10. Ramsay is shocked at such mistake making. Russell then hands on raw ribeye steaks to the pass.

Chef Ramsay had threatened to throw them all out of the kitchen at the next mistake. Did Russell do it on purpose? Chef Ramsay throws the towel in on them literally and tells them he's thinking of telling them all to take off their jackets. The debate over who to vote out spirals around Trevor, Sabrina, and Gail. Sabrina rightfully points out that Gail's experience makes her fish failures look even worse. Sabrina tells Ramsay before leaving that Gail really hurts as a chef in the context of an executive chef. Ramsay boots Sabrina, a 22 year old, is booted, but Gail's time is coming.


5 chefs compete

The Hell's Kitchen is at the final five contestants marker. The challenge is the taco truck food truck lunch preparation challenge. Russell prepares octopus, which epic fails. Chicago boy Trev prepares a lunch of pasta with Italian sausages, southern girl Nona makes chicken salad  and Gail gives the crowd sweet potato fries. The Hells Kitchen trucks feed the Los Angeles City Hall employees. The challenge was titled gourmet on the go, but the winner is not really fine dining.

Gail wins and gets the makeover reward. Stephen Cojocaru restyles her look and Jose Eber cuts her hair. She returns to the Hell's Kitchen premises looking good and catches Trev's eye. But the kiss of death that curses the spotlight challenges follows Gail into the kitchen dinner service. Jillian can't cook the fish, Gail stares into space, even Russell can't fix the situation. Trev sends dead meat, overcooked ribeyes to the pass with Ramsay out the door. Then he tries to flash refire overdone meat to send out.

Gail wastes more food as very late in the competition she crashes and burns on garnish, then fish, which many competitors claim is easy. Paris Hilton and a twelve seat table of armed forces staff wait for meals with the stylist Stephen Cojocaru waiting for food also. Chef Ramsay walks out of his own restaurant in an embarrassed fury. Diners like Paris Hilton watch Chef Ramsay walk out. They look on and comment "he is mad, he looks angry."  Chef Ramsay comments in voice-over 'I'm going to do someone some damage if I stay much longer in there".

Ramsay comes back into the kitchen. Gail, the most experienced, cook, makes the third time the charm and burns more fish. This is after winning the food truck challenge. Jillian sends a raw trio of eggs to the pass over spinach (Vinny's mistake) and gets tossed. Then Russell, Trev, and Nona must deliver the entire 12 seat marines table. After service Gail is revealed as crimping under pressure. Can the existing chef team afford to keep Trev the personality problem, or Gail the fish waster? Chef Ramsay makes the decision for them, and gets Gail on her way.


Next Episode: 4 Chefs Compete

Trev and Chef Ramsay comes to the breaking point.


Trev will be out cooked by Jillian, Nona and Russell. But Jillian's youth and inexperience in fine dining will keep her out of the final two. If Boris and Trev come back to the final six additional assistants for the Final cook off, Nona could win. But Russell's bad blood with almost all the players who have been booted might backfire on him when he has to choose among them for his final restaurant staff.

Previews shows Nona emotionally burning out, and Russell's long psychological game might get cut off at the pass. But If Jillian gets into the final two with Russell by some wildcard vote, she might pull through his overweening ambition. Russell might make the classic mistake of overly ambitious food too sophisticated for the diners. And if the booted "jury" staff blackball Russell with bad performances, Ramsay will be forced to choose the winner from the comment cards.

About the author thetvking


Hi my name is  Chris Ramsden, I am the creator of TheTVKing. I don't write that often but every now and again I dust off the keyboard. I tweet as @TheTVKing

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