After defeating a dozen chefs over 13 episodes, it has come down to this: Three chefs, including Kentucky’s own Sara Bradley, scrabbling for two spots in the final cook-off.
Head judge Tom Colicchio told Sara, who won last week’s challenge, and Kelsey and Eric that even though they all three made it to the finale in Macau, only two get to cook “the meal of their lives,” as host Padma Lakshmi put it.
We don’t get many clues about how the judges will decide who gets cut in this last round.
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Kelsey and Sara sound like they will be super mad if they’ve come all this way to leave, but who wouldn’t be?
Eric, apparently. He seems surprisingly chill.
We got a little glimpse of him saying that for his four-course finale, he’d do “the transatlantic slave trade.” Whew, that’s a lot to pack into four plates. I hope we get to see that.
And if anyone can do it, it’s Eric, who has wowed the judges, for the most part, with his African cuisine. There have been a few stumbles, especially in trying to create Chinese interpretations. (Gritty melon seeds, anyone?)
Meanwhile, Kelsey’s been hitting it out of the park with her layered Southern/Chinese creations, and now Sara’s hitting her stride too, with a similar Jewish/Chinese matzo ball soup.
In a preview, the final three had a night off to enjoy the sights and tastes of Macau and were living it up with egg tarts and whatever the heck a chicken cookie is. Meanwhile, Eric says he “truly” doesn’t care that Kelsey and Sara are “so tight” and he wants to win. So maybe he’s not so chill after all.
Kelsey suggests he drink a lot and stay up all night, but she doesn’t sound threatened.
Here’s hoping that their close ties help them stay friends after the show because only one chef will be crowned “Top Chef,” right?
Many of the eliminated chefs (Nini!) will be returning for the final episode, too, possibly helping out with part of the challenge. Photos show them menu planning and shopping with the final three.
Which is why when we hear them say in the teaser that something is “one of the best dishes I’ve eaten this year,” it’s going to be a big deal.
But which chef will serve that special dish? Stay tuned; Bravo will air the supersized “Top Chef” finale Thursday at a new time: 9:30 to 11 p.m.