Last night’s “Hell’s Kitchen” episode on FOX began with the guys all getting along and telling each other they felt like a new team without Robert, who had spent the night in a hospital with chest pains. Then Gordon Ramsay had the two teams roll dice at a makeshift craps table, and each one had a letter that represented part of a meal they would cook. For instance, the ladies started with an “R” and Suzanne chose rabbit…can I say something here? EWWWWWWWW. That’s one step below cooking a dog or cat for dinner, isn’t it? Anyway, each team member had the chance to roll and select an ingredient. The red team wound up with rabbit, haricot verts (a fancy French term for thin green beans), potatoes, garlic and ham hocks. Ramsay praised them for having the basis for a nice, rustic dinner.

The blue team, meanwhile, started with haddock, and then Dave, who rolled an “F,” chose figs. The guys were giving Dave a hard time and hoping he would say fennel, but he didn’t. Van chose angel hair pasta for “A,” and they also had apples and tomatoes. Then each team had to cook their meal for Ramsay, and the guys were all surprised at how good their fig/tomato sauce tasted. Ramsay loved the rabbit dish (again, ewwww) but he loved the haddock dish with the figs even more, and the blue team won the challenge. Part of the reason they won was that the garlic in the rabbit dish was too overpowering, something Tennille had warned Ariel about.
The guys’ prize was a trip to Vegas, while the ladies had to unload delivery trucks all day, and even at 1am after they had gone to sleep. Yikes.

At dinner service, Robert arrived back to Hell’s Kitchen but the guys gave him a less-than-warm reception. Robert sensed it but he didn’t care…he wanted to win this thing. At dinner, Ramsay told them there would be “chefs’ tables” in each side of the kitchen, where four of Ramsay’s executive chefs from various restaurants would sit, two at each table.

Dave waited on the blue table, and put an order of risotto in without asking the chefs what they wanted. The good thing is, they loved his risotto. Meanwhile, the ladies were ignoring the chefs at their table and Ramsay gave them hell for it. Ariel finally did but they were less than impressed with her scallops.

Then it was a comedy of errors all night, especially on the blue team. Van served fish twice that had plastic wrap still attached to it. Wow. Sabrina poked fun at Suzanne, saying Suzanne was barking orders at everyone to look “fake busy,” and that Ramsay would pick up on that soon enough. The blue team forgot about the chefs’ table after a while, and then Robert tried to serve lamb chops that were thinner than the bone, not thicker as Ramsay prefers (as would anyone eating them). Kevin sent out raw fish and then got kind of cocky with Ramsay by not jumping to attention when he tried to gather the whole team. The red team finished getting their orders out, the blue team did not, so there was a clear winner. But even more, the comment cards from the chefs’ tables were as follows:

Red: “Happy to return”
Blue: “Thanks, but no thanks”

So as best of the worst, Dave had to nominate two teammates for elimination, and after some banter between the guys, including Robert and Andy shouting at each other, they were called back in. Dave chose Van and Robert, based on last night’s service. But Ramsay called Andy up front too, based on his entire body of work so far. He then asked Van why he should stay, and Van said something like, “You’ve been in this business 20 years, chef, I know you can spot talent.” To which Ramsay replied, “Back in line!” It was then between Robert and Andy, who started arguing again about who should stay right in front of Ramsay.

Ramsay said, “Andy…….back in line!” And he then booted Robert off…saying that at this stage, and in his second season on the show, Robert should know better than to serve lamb chops that were too small. Robert said he appreciated the chance again, but really…it was time…and that dude really needs to get himself healthy before he can focus on the rest of his career.

So there you have it…we’re really getting down to it here…remaining chefs are Ariel, Tennille (she has managed to hang around), Suzanne, Amanda, Sabrina, Andy, Kevin, Dave and Van. I am seeing some weaknesses in Ariel so I’m still saying Kevin or Dave have the best shot to win, with Sabrina being a possibility too, but a more remote one.

Who do you like? Let me know your thoughts on the episode……