The last few weeks of Top Chef have seemingly come down to the tiniest of mistakes and once again that was the case as Joe Sasto was sent packing as his beet carpaccio could not get him to the finale, setting up a battle of Chicago between Joe Flamm and Adrienne Cheatham.
To determine who would battle in the Top Chef season 15 finale, with the winner taking home the coveted title of “Top Chef” along with $125,000, the three chefs had to create a vegetarian dish while cooking on a cowboy cauldron.
“The vegetarian didn’t throw me as much as the cowboy cauldron. It’s hard enough prepping in a restaurant and here we are prepping out in a field using a cowboy cauldron as our source of energy, that took its toll,” Chef Joe Sasto said.
This was not just the typical event for a Top Chef event, this featured a who’s-who of the culinary world at the Food and Wine Classic in Aspen. Chef Joe Flamm won the challenge with his grilled baby zucchini topped with hazelnut zucchini pesto and Chef Adrienne moved on with her charred corn pudding wrapped in Swiss chard with shishito peppers and champagne broth.
“Going into the judges table I had a pretty good idea that I wouldn’t be moving on, especially after I tried the other two dishes. I wasn’t as focused as I could have been, which was really disappointing for me because I love vegetables, that should have been a slam dunk challenge for me. I’m not even sure what happened thinking back on it,” Chef Joe Sasto said.
The past few weeks the cooking was becoming more and more elevated and that could be witnessed at every judges table, where the decision about who to send home became incredibly difficult.
“When it was the five of us we had a conversation that we were like we were all so happy with what we’ve done and we respect each other, no matter who goes, there is no being upset about it, we just know we are all there neck and neck. We all felt like winners at that point,” Chef Joe Sasto said.
“It is so much more than a cooking competition, it is chef boot camp, you don’t realize it but the whole time they are drilling it into you, what is your food, what is your style, why are you putting that on the plate, how does this represent you, what is your voice and what matters to you most. That was the biggest thing that I took away was what matters to me when I am cooking,” Chef Joe Sasto said. “It’s been fun, it’s been so much more than I expected. I hope it doesn’t stop. You get invited to events, you get to cook for people, I got to speak at my college as an alumni, so many things keep coming down the pipeline. No matter how much of a celebrity status I get, I never want to be one of those chefs who is never at the restaurant. It is always great to see the fans who come in and they are surprised to see me actually working in the restaurant.”
The Top Chef finale will take place at 9 p.m. ET, Thursday on the Bravo network. Not only will you get to see Chef Joe Flamm and Chef Adrienne Cheatham go head-to-head, but you are going to see some of the eliminated chefs make a return appearance to assist and you will see it all under the scrutiny of the judges tables and other guest chefs.
To find our more about Chef Joe Sasto and his new restaurant Cal Mare, visit: Chef Joe Sasto
For more information on Top Chef, visit: Bravo TV
(Photos courtesy Bravo TV)