HK14: Keys, Steak, and Black Jackets


Anyone who’s watched Hell’s Kitchen before knows that “7 Chefs Compete” is when the black jackets come out.  It’s the list time the chefs compete as Red v. Blue.  Now, we’ve gotten to see a lot of individual work this season, which I love, but we’re about to see a lot more.  Let’s talk about the last team challenge and steak night.

Unlocking Flavor

Chef Ramsay gives us some loose metaphor about the key to flavor or something like that for steaks to set up the challenge.  It’s a fun one, though!  There are a bunch of lockers, only some of which have cuts of meat inside.  Chef Ramsay throws a bunch of keys up in the air and the chefs scramble to find ANY cut, let alone a good cut.  They have 35 minutes total to find and cook their steak.

It’s king of the hill style judging, as Ramsay has the best dish’s chef perched atop a throne; last man sitting wins!

  • T’s rib cap is deserving of the throne first
  • Milly’s New York strip is teetering on the edge of raw; he does not take the throne
  • Josh’s porterhouse is overcooked; he doesn’t take the throne either
  • Meghan’s porterhouse, however, is good enough to win her the throne!
  • Alison’s rib eye is overcooked; she doesn’t take the throne
  • Nick’s New York strip doesn’t win him the spot either
  • Michelle’s flank steak wins her the throne and wins the challenge for the Red team!

As a reward, Red heads to Catalina island, goes on a submarine ride, has a four course meal, and wins a Vitamix apiece!  Blue’s punishment is to break down an entire side of beef.

Steak Night

The next night is the final team service and steak night in Hell’s Kitchen.  During prep, Michelle and Josh argue endlessly about jalapeños.  Things don’t go much better for Red once service begins.  There is a lot of extra stress on the meat station because, uh, it’s steak night!  Michelle on grill and Alison on fish have the most problems.  Meghan on Blue has a refire, but recovers.  Red doesn’t seem to.  They serve half a table, which we all know Ramsay hates to do.  Josh on garnish is a disaster too.

Blue does so well that Chef Ramsay actually delivers black jackets to Meghan, Milly, and Nick in the kitchen!

Red almost gets kicked out mid-service.  Ramsay pulls Alison from fish and installs T.  He then sends in the black jacket chefs to help them finish service.  It’s painfully obvious who lost.

All the chefs together nominate Josh and Alison.  Ramsay wants to hear from someone else: Michelle.  She steps forward and receives a black jacket!  T too gets hers as the strongest chef on Red tonight.  Alison is eliminated, giving Josh the final black jacket.

While Alison did have an atrocious  dinner service, I can’t help but feel that Josh is less deserving of the jacket.  He’s had problems with nearly every member of the newly formed black brigade, and I don’t think he’s much longer for HK.

What do you all think?!

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