It seemed like the trio of MasterChef judges were feeling real generous Wednesday night. Not only did Gordon Ramsay give Oklahoma City fast-food worker Gabriel the opportunity to attend culinary school — for free — after his Episode 16 elimination, but Aaron Sanchez also invited the young home cook to work at one of his NOLA restaurants.
Even better? In the two-hour show's final episode (17 if you're counting), the judges spared the three bottom competitors who were at risk of being sent home, including Helicon marketing director Jeff Philbin of Tampa.
As far as Twitter was concerned, the most entertaining part of the evening was the mini feud (if you can even call it that) that played out on screen between rivals (again, if you can even call them that) Philbin and Dino. The New York dancer gifted Philbin with the Elimination Test's toughest pasta to prepare from scratch: egg yolk ravioli. But he "nailed it," as Ramsay put it — after some friendly back-and-forth banter, of course.
Our guy from Carrollwood also found himself in hot water during the following 'sode. His execution on the red team wasn't up to the standards of captain Eboni, the Chicago addiction counselor who was originally "enthused" to have him on her side. Their teammate, Chicago nutritionist Cate, wasn't exactly in agreement, but whatevs, right?
There was even one of those "REALLY?" moments when the last elimination battle of the night, or Pressure Test, tasked the red team, as the bottom cooks, with making chocolate soufflé. Like, what's up with all these sweets lately (Ramsay called desserts Philbin's Achilles' heel, mind you)? Was it something we said?
Other than that, those who tuned in around the region, I think, went to bed satisfied with Philbin's performance (I mean, he was part of the first challenge's top three). There were mistakes, sure, and he could've made some improvements. But the quick one-on-one chat he had with Ramsay toward the end provided some insight into what's going through his head in the kitchen.
"How are you feeling? Why are you so hard on yourself?" Ramsay asks.
"Because I wanna be like you," says Philbin.
"I'd love you to be like me, but you're too hard on yourself. Where's this exterior coming from — wall of steel? Getting through you is like getting into the Pentagon."
"Yeah, Fort Knox over here."
"Yeah, but why? What am I missing?"
"Because I just wanna make sure that I do things the right way, and I do it the best way."
"Get yourself in the top five."