Warrior Chef 2: Finale Part 1

The final four arrive at Haneda Airport, and are taken by car to their hotel in Tokyo.

Rose: @The car ride is long, and I’m just glad that Vin and I are together in this car. @We’re just having a ball.

Vin: @Rose is the BFF I already have because everyone loves me, and she’s definitely the strongest cook in this season after me. @I think that my food will always get to the end of the competition. @I’m feeling determined to win now that we’re here.

Amanda: @I’m stuck with Jo, and it’s awkward and tense. @In the last challenge, Rose, Vin, and I all thought that he was going home.

Jo: @I know they don’t like me. @They’re all crazy and psychotic. @Look at Vin. @He’s self-absorbed. @Rose is really bitchy, and then we have Amanda, who is boring. @I just want kick all of their asses at this point, and take home the title.

The final four finally arrive in the kitchen of the Tokyo Skytree, where they are greeted by Victoria.
Victoria: Hi, finalists! So let’s get into your first challenge. We want to see how consistent but inventive you can go with sushi.

Jo: @I love sushi. @I think I can nail this one.

Rose: @I hate sushi. @I prefer cooked fish. @But I expected a sushi challenge going to Japan and all, so I brushed up on it. @I can be a whiny bitch, but at least I do my homework and know what I’m talking about. @I’m not an idiot.

Victoria: So for this challenge, you’ll be working in teams of two to prepare 20 portions of an identical sushi dish. Please draw knives!

Jo – 1

Rose – 1

Amanda – 2

Vin – 2

Vin: @I’m stoked to be with Amanda, because she’s a strong, strong cook. @We’ve got this one.

Amanda: @I don’t feel strong with my sushi-making skills, but I did brush up on them just in case. @I honestly don’t know if any of us are good at making sushi.

Rose: Fuck me. @I’m stuck with him. @The brat. @I’m so angry right now.

Jo: @Rose looks unhappy to be with me. @Why are they suddenly ganging up on me like that? @They’re such bullies.

Victoria: This is a challenge you want to win! The winning team will move into the final round of the competition, while the losing team will fight it out in the elimination challenge, where only one of you will join the final three.

Vin: @This challenge, it’s definitely like a sudden-death challenge. @I don’t want to lose, because Amanda is strong. @Going head to head with her in this kind of setting, it would be difficult.

Rose: @I think I’m screwed in this first challenge, because of how immature Jo is. @In team challenges, he does not take well to pressure, nor does he take ownership or responsibility when things go wrong. @That being said, I know in the elimination challenge, I can demolish him, so I’m not worried.

Victoria: You have 45 minutes, and your time starts now!

Jo: *to Rose* Let’s do tuna.

Rose: @Jo wants to do tuna. @That’s boring as fuck. @But again, I actually want to tank this challenge. @The thought of Jo making it into the final challenge makes my stomach sick. Sure, let’s do that! @So I go along with it. @He’s not going to take ownership if this dish goes to shit anyways.

Jo: So let’s do tuna nigiri with freshly grated wasabi, homemade ponzu, and I think we’ll be good. @I’m feeling great about our dish! @It’ll be easy to handle. @I’ll break down the salmon and portion it while Rose does the rice, wasabi, and ponzu.

Vin: *to Amanda* Should we go ham on this one? @I’ve been watching a lot of Iron Chef: America, and I remember Masaharu Morimoto doing this stain-glass roll. @I managed to talk Amanda into doing that exact dish.

Amanda: @The trick is that you have to make rolls, cut them into quarters, and basically do a roll, inside another roll, with another roll. @Oh, and we are tempura frying it. @So our dish is a yellowtail and arctic char stain glass sushi with blanched asparagus, and then prosciutto, and a prosciutto-asparagus foam.

VIn: We got this. We f*cking got this.

Amanda: Yeah, we do!

Rose: @I don’t even pay any attention to the rice. @I’m just going to let it sit there and burn. @The ponzu, I don’t add any citrus or vinegar. @It’s straight up soy. @I’m just going to sit there and watch time tick down, and enjoy myself.

Vin: @Rose is a bit evil for doing that, but thanks for the win, I guess?

Rose: @I really don’t want Jo to be Warrior Chef, and if it means I’m tanking my own shot at the final challenge, that’s what it’ll take.

Jo: @I see that we have 5 minutes left, and our rice is burnt. Crap. @I’m feeling under the weeds right now. @Rose is being a lazy bitch, and it’s harming our team.

Victoria: Time’s up!

Jo: We’re serving sashimi. Crap.

Vin: @Our team made a phenomenal sushi dish. @Hello, final three.

Victoria: Your judge for this is Namie Bethany-Amai!

Namie: Hi, everyone!

Amanda: Holy hell. @She was a sous-chef and former idol and model at the age of 17, and she was recently the executive pastry chef for a Michelin starred restaurant in New York. @She’s a phenomenal chef, and I’m freaking out on the inside.

Namie: These kinds of challenges, I totally get how hard they can be. I’ll try my best to judge this fairly.

Namie and Victoria taste the dishes.

Victoria: So how did each team do?

Namie: Surprisingly, this was one-sided. I was expecting it to be closer because it was the final four, but I guess my judging was made easy. Rose and Jo, it’s like you guys didn’t even try. There was definitely tension in your teamwork, and hopefully the next challenge will be a chance for you two to sort it out, head to head. Vin and Amanda, your sushi dish was phenomenal and it shows why you two earned the right to be in the final three.

Victoria: Congratulations, Vin and Amanda! The two of you are exempt from the next challenge and will be in the final three!

Vin: Thank you! @We won! @That’s awesome! @Namie loved our dish and it feels great. @Amanda and I are officially in the last round.

Amanda: @I didn’t think we would be in the final round, and I didn’t think that I would win my place on sushi of all things! @Vin and I are over the moon right now.

Amanda and Vin leave.

Victoria: Rose, Jo, the two of you have to face off in this elimination challenge. In the last challenge, you two prepared tuna sashimi. In this sudden-death challenge, we want to see you guys prepare the tuna in a cooked dish. You have just 35 minutes to stay in the competition, and your time starts now!

Jo: @I’m pretty pissed at Rose at the moment. @She sabotaged me and for no real reason. @For my dish, I’m preparing black garlic marinated tuna with cucumber and avocado. @I’m going to sear the tuna to finish it, and prepare an avocado mousse and pickled cucumber ribbons. @I’m hoping that the flavors really do come through, because I want that tuna to almost taste like a steak.

Rose: @Jo got lucky to get this far. @I really think that Talia and Nate belong here over him. @For my dish tonight, I’m preparing a play on riblha corba, which is Montenegrin fish soup with rice. @I’m going to do a tuna confit aranchini, and then a concentrated fish-butter sauce, and a seared tuna with celery-lemon-tomato salad. @I know I can knock Jo out, and when I do that in just 35 minutes, he’ll regret ever crossing me.

In the stew room:

Vin: *to Amanda* Who do you think will join us?

Amanda: *to Vin* Honestly, I think Rose will. @Rose is a strong, strong cook. @She’s been extremely consistent, and anyone would have a difficult time going against her.

Vin: @I hope Rose makes it through. @It’s because of her that Amanda and I guaranteed our spots in the finale. @I hope karma doesn’t come back to bite her for doing that.

Amanda: @At this point, I need to start thinking about my final menu, who I want to be my sous-chefs, and that amuse bouche challenge. @These are the things I need to focus on, since I know beyond a reasonable doubt that this is going to be my immediate future. @If I don’t step it up, Vin and Rose will definitely take me out.

In the kitchen:
Rose: @I get the aranchini mixture out of the blast chiller and start breading and frying those. @I taste the sauce, and it’s a little too fishy, so I hit it with more white wine and lemons to kill that. @I know that I am a better cook than Jo. @His dish is really boring.

Jo: @I check on my tuna, and it’s looking good. @I slice into it, and the color is where I want it to be. @Rose’s dish, it sounds complicated and confusing, just like her. @I hope she goes home. @She really fucked me over in the last challenge.

Victoria: Time’s up!

Jo: @Rose is a sorry human being. @Goodbye, Rose. @I’ll see you go home tonight, and then kick Amanda and Vin off next.

Rose: @Jo’s delusional if he thinks he’s better than me. @I’m going to win this elimination challenge.

Victoria: Your judges are:

Namie-Bethany Amai

Vanilla Cuylenberg – Warrior Chef winner

Tadashi Hamilton – Warrior Chef runner up

Victoria: So let’s start with Rose’s dish.

-riblha corba deconstructed

Vanilla: I just loved the different textures she achieved with that tuna. The confit in the aranchini was delicious and I enjoyed her sauce and salad a lot.

Tadashi: This is the cooking she needs to show at this stage in the competition. I really loved her flavors that she developed in that sauce and in the aranchini.

Namie: If she cooked like this in the last challenge, she would have won hands down. The fact she had less time and one less person, and produced something like this, it shows that she is a better chef than she lets on.

Victoria: And our last dish is Jo’s!

-black garlic marinated tuna with cucumbers and avocado

Namie: This dish had good flavor and texture in it. The thing I’m noticing with Jo is that he doesn’t necessarily go for a complicated or ambitious concept, but the flavors work.

Tadashi: The last time I had a dish by Jo, he nailed it with this shortrib with mac n’ cheese and kale chips. This dish, it shows that he has learned finesse, but still prepares food that people would want to eat. It was delicious, but a bit heavy on the black garlic.

Vanilla: Jo didn’t necessarily impress me the last time I tasted his food, and unfortunately, he had a hard dish to follow with Rose’s. I just felt like it was alright, but not necessarily amazing or final three-worthy, just because Rose had so much flavor and technique developed in just 35 minutes, while he did something that would have impressed me if he did that in 15 minutes, but definitely not 35.

Victoria: So it sounds like we have our third finalist.

In walks Rose and Jo.

Victoria: Unfortunately, one of you is going home, while the other won the elimination challenge and will join Vin and Amanda in the next round.

Rose: @I know I won this. @I saw Jo’s dish. @It was boring.

Victoria: Rose…. congratulations! You won the elimination challenge and you remain in the competition. And Jo, please leave the kitchen.

Jo: Thank you for the opportunity to compete and making it this far was already good enough for me. @I tried my best and that’s what counts the most. @I’m proud of my progress and I think that Vincent, Amanda, and Rose are the best three cooks. @But being that close, it still hurts. @I want another chance to prove myself. @For sure.

Rose: @Seeing Jo leave the competition, I’m feeling great about my odds in the finale with Vin and Amanda. @Jo has been able to pull out some strong dishes this season, but he was lucky, in my eyes. @I can really shine that much brighter amongst people who actually cook consistently well.

Mariko: Rose, you’ll be in the final round with Vin and Amanda!

Rose: I’ve got this. This title is going to be mine. @I’ve been strong since the very beginning. @I know that Vin and Amanda are going to be in danger against me.

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