As we join the chefs post-Eliza, there's a quiet reflectiveness in the stew room.
The cheftestants all agree she had a "great personality" and was "sweet and funny." Josh is swearing off pork, claiming he "doesn't have any underwear left" after two failed porcine dishes.
Danyele recounts Tom's advice to her to not be so nervous, and she nervously announces her determination to do so. Danyele is growing on me. I want to see her get a win.
The next morning, Padma is joined by Season 4 Winner Stephanie Izard. She is the only woman to win Top Chef. "So far." she adds. Ya hear that, ladies?
For this week's quickfire, the chefs can cook anything they want, using any ingredient they want. The hitch is that the entire pantry -- every single ingredient -- is wrapped in Reynolds wrap aluminum foil. The chefs can unwrap any ingredient they want, but once it's unwrapped, they must use it in their dish.
Additionally, they are only allowed to use the foil as their cooking vessel. No pans, pots, or prep dishes. This is a pretty ridiculous roundabout way to get a product placement in, but I must admit I cackled at the goofy novelty of it.
They have 30 minutes. The gang heads to the pantry. "What's my protein, goat balls?" Stefan asks as he unwraps what he's grabbed out of the fridge. "Salmon," he announces, somewhat disappointedly.
John is horrified to find he has grabbed a pineapple, which he thought was "a pot of herbs." Out of all the food items in the world that one might be able to identify by shape, don't you think pineapple would be one of them? Again, maybe John should keep his glasses on his face and off his forehead.
Kristen is going to make a sponge cake -- which Danyele describes as "pretty ballsy" since they have no pans to work with. For a second I think that Bart is accessorizing with the Reynolds wrap by making a really festive hat, but he's in fact using his head as a mold to create a saucepan. He admits this challenge is a lot of fun.
Stephanie and Padma taste all the dishes. It's remarkable what the chefs were able to do with no cooking vessels. Only Micah's seems to have clearly failed; his lamb is way undercooked.
Stephanie's least favorite dishes are Brook's raw oniony roasted yams, Micah's still bleating lamb chop, and Josh's uninspired roasted chicken.
The top three picks are Danyele's (yay!) cannellini bean stew, Kristen's almond sponge cake, and Sheldon's smoky scallops. The Reynolds Wrap crown goes to Kristen, who has immunity for the elimination challenge.
For that, the team will head to Remlinger Farms Berry Festival, where they will be cooking with assorted berries in head-to-head challenges. This means that two chefs will prepare dishes with the same ingredient, and each battle will have its own winner and loser.
Since Kristen has immunity she won't have a challenger, but she'll still have a chance to win. The five chefs who placed highest in the Quickfire get to pick their opponents.
Sheldon picks Micah, so he can push himself to win against the "young gun" (also maybe because Micah hasn't won a single challenge?)
Danyele picks Josh, so they can have a Texas-Oklahoma battle (also maybe because he's been in the bottom three challenges in a row?)
Stefan selects John, as they are the oldest two competitors.
Josie takes Lizzie, and in her interview Lizzie warns the she should not be underestimated.
This leaves Bart to pair up with Brooke, who is quick to point out being the last person picked is actually a huge compliment. No one wants to battle her because she kicked so much ass last week.
The berry festival's 150 guests will help decide the winner, who will get $10,000. The chefs lift up their cloches to find out what berry they will cook with. I am deeply disappointed no one gets snozberries.