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"Food Network Star" goes live for Independence Day!

PopWrapped | PopWrapped Author


07/01/2013 7:52 pm


Jacob Elyachar

Staff Writer

Food Network Star is the place where culinary lovers can become celebrity chefs!

So far this season, four chefs have had their dreams of becoming the next Alton Brown, Bobby Flay and Giada De Laurentiis come crashing down on them.

Eight chefs have been able to impress the trio so far…. but who will face elimination tonight?

Up first, the Top Eight chefs were greeted by Giada and E!’s very own Terrence Jenkins; they introduced this week’s Mentor Challenge.    The finalists had three-minutes to create a sausage and pepper sandwich and interact with Terrence.   However, the finalists were thrown various curveballs throughout their presentation. 

Viet Pham, Chad Rosenthal, Chris Hodgson and Nikki Dinki could not handle their respective curveballs that ranged from missing peppers to dealing with a “sick” Terrence.  However, other finalists including Stacey Poon-Kinney, Damaris Phillips, Rodney Henry and Russell Jackson were able to rise above the challenge and give some of their best performances to date.    At the end of the challenge, Giada awarded Rodney the win and the advantage for the next Star Challenge. 

This week’s Star Challenge saw all eight finalists go live for 45-minutes – they would be tackling eight different stations that represented an aspect of the Fourth of July.  Rodney’s advantage was that he got to not only pick his station…. but also assign the other contestants their stations for the 45-minute segment.  

In addition to going live, Food Network Executive Bob Tuschman returned to the competition to observe the finalists in action and to also help Alton, Bobby and Giada in making their decision to who stays and who goes!

Before this challenge started, Alton stated that this was the finalists’ midterm.  It seemed like the finalists were studying all night and fell asleep as the Scantron was handed out.  Former frontrunners Viet and Russell fell below their expectations with both their presentations and food.    Meanwhile, Nikki, Chris and Stacey were able to overcome their obstacles and impressed the Selection Committee and earned spots in the Top Seven.

Joining the trio in the Safe Zone were Chad, Damaris and Rodney.   That left Viet and Russell in this week’s Bottom Two.   Before the result was given, Bobby stated that he was disappointed in both of their performances.  Alton added that they were neck and neck, but at the end, it was Russell’s toss to commercial that saved him from elimination.

Unfortunately, it was Viet’s turn to leave the competition.  However, Viet’s Food Network Star has not ended just yet…He will join Lovely and Danushka in Robert Irvine’s Star Salvation Challenge.

Next week, each contestant will have a chance to present their point-of-view to three high-powered culinary executives.

Photo courtesy of Food Network



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