Top Chef Power Rankings, Finale Part 1: Straight Tequila Vs. Accidental Vanilla

Senior Editor
02.17.17 32 Comments
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NBC Universal

Last night was part one of Top Chef‘s two-part finale, in which the winner of Last Chance Kitchen returned, and the fourth-best chef was eliminated for the second time. Unlike the first fourth-best chef, the second fourth-best chef doesn’t get a second chance. Phew, that’s a lot of math for a cooking show. Also, shouldn’t Last Chance Kitchen be more accurately called Second Chance Kitchen?

Anyway, this all led to easily the least surprising of all outcomes. Remember that girl who probably shouldn’t have gone home? She’s back! Remember that guy who definitely should’ve gone home multiple times? He’s gone!

That’s right, [SPOILER ALERT] the winner of Last Chance Kitchen was Brooke. Did anyone doubt for a second that Brooke would be back? That was fairly expected and not unpleasant, but I’d be lying if I said I didn’t still miss Jim (aka Truman Compote). That miniature Southern gent is like if a blue bird could cook and wear bow ties.

The finale began in Guadalajara, and the quickfire challenge was to cook some goat in Chivas stadium. A “chivo” being a goat, or at least a young goat, not to be confused with an adult goat, a “cabra,” or a large goat, “cabrón,” which my Mexican high school classmates assured me was a term of great respect. That’s probably why they called me that all the time. Pretty nice, right? It was great to be so well liked.

Anyway, guest judge Francisco Ruano went on and on about how Guadalajara is known for their birria, which is a damned delicious goat stew, and then gave the cheftestants 45 minutes to cook their goat, which is about 12 hours too short to cook birria. I enjoy that food shows always give their contestants way too little time to cook the food they give them and then they’re like “That’s the challenge!”

When what they really mean is “Hey, tick tock, f*ckers. Comfort food schmomfort schmood, we’re paying these cameramen by the hour.”

Then, in the elimination round, the cheftestants headed off to the “Patron Hacienda” for a challenge to create a dish-and-margarita pairing. Damn, a sponsored challenge in the finale? That had to cost a pretty penny. Those deep-pocketed bastards at Patron probably outbid Sammy Hagar on his proposed Cabo Wabo Chiller Challenge. For the best, I’m sure.

In any case it looked like a sick party, but my favorite part was the guy out front doing sweet horse tricks:

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