The Contenders
#5) Brian Huskey (29): You can tell Brian is a talented guy. He’s also got some good ideas going on, and the judges frequently heap praise on him for individual facets of his dish. He’s been unable, however, to put together one brilliant effort that proves just how great he can be. Look for that to happen sooner rather than later.

#6) Justin Devillier (29): This week, the competition was pretty personal for Justin, who really wanted to prove he had the chops to recreate New Orleans food. The man’s been a decent competitor thus far, but the judges loved his take on beignets and it ended up landing him the win. We’re really happy the man stepped up his game this week, and hopefully that win will be enough to buoy him forward in the weeks to come.

#7) Janine Booth (27): Janine was pretty convinced she was screwed during the quickfire. Her pork wasn’t cooking fast enough, and she fully expected Dana from Food & Wine to give her the big ugly axe. Fortunately for her, it miraculously got done just in time and she cruised along. For her sake, however, I hope she improves enough in the coming weeks to start competing for victories rather than tickets to next week.

#8) Stephanie Cmar (25): Stephanie has spent a lot of time discussing her confidence issues onscreen. However, this week she showed up in a pretty big way, landing in the Top 3 during the quickfire for her bacon dish and the final three for her take on beignets. If she keeps cooking with as much fervor as she showed this week, she should be a part of this competition for a long time.

#9) Carlos Gaytan (23): Carlos has made more than his share of mistakes so far in this competition. His blackened fish was underseasoned and way too blackened, and truth be told, he almost went home for his mistake. That being said, all of the issues he’s had so far haven’t been related to technique or conception. He clearly knows how to cook. His Michelin star proves it. He just needs to relax and start understanding the rhythms of the competition.

#10) Michael Sichel (20): Michael has landed in the middle a lot, but this week he didn’t make a dish that did particularly well. His shrimp was described as overcooked, but arguably worse, he was kind of a jerk in the kitchen after Nina accidentally used a few of his plates. His only saving grace was that his presentation was good, but he’ll need to make food that tastes better moving forward if he wants to stick around.

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