Kevin's mother, naturally, loves his fried chicken skin. The squash is interesting and almost like wine, you keep finding flavors of it, Tom says. Bryan calls his mom the queen of one-dish meals, which inspired his casserole-esque dish. They call Bryan's dish the least seasoned. Michael's spot prawn wasn't cooked enough for some of the judges, but they did like his popcorn broccoli.
Padma eggs on Mrs. Voltaggio to get her to say which son's food she liked best. Did they not milk enough drama from the sibling rivalry so they're trying to make their mother make a Sophie's choice?
For the mystery box dish, they all had the same ingredients, but the plates look completely different. Kevin's broth was good, but the mushroom was tough. Michael's dish was great, Tom says. It was well seasoned and had good balance. Bryan's get dinged for being one-note.
Bryan makes venison saddle and everyone loves it. It has great flavor. Michael makes squab breast and the judges called it complex but they called the mushroom puree he formed into the shape of a mushroom gimmicky. Kevin's pork belly wasn't cooked enough for some judges, and Tom suggested that he should've served another cut of pork to make it a complete plate. Kevin looked like he was going to cry over the pork criticism. Poking at his pork is just too close to home for a guy with a pig tattoo.
And it's the Top Chef curse of dessert!
Kevin makes roasted banana with chocolate and bacon mousse with bacon crunchies. Bryan makes a cheesecake and Michael makes a chocolate caramel coulant (like chocolate lava cake, but more high-brow). Kevin didn't do enough with the banana, Tom says. Michael's was "almost a very good dessert," Tom says. Bryan's cheesecake was "heavenly," Gail says.
Then the cheftestants have to talk about why they deserve to be Top Chef. Bryan feels like he expressed his cuisine and he hopes that it's good enough to win. Michael says he just doesn't want Bryan to be top chef (cue laugh track). Michael expressed how much he loved food and it'll be what he always does. Kevin say he loves bringing people together and that it's soulful – like your eye twinkle, Santa. Kevin seems crushed when Padma tells him he's not the Top Chef. Kicking him out and leaving it down to Bryan and Michael to duke it out seemed unnecessarily cruel to us.
And Michael wins? Really?
Not that he's a bad chef, but that seemed so out of left field! Michael says he wishes he and his brother could both win … but really, he doesn't. Michael cries! Bryan's a little disappointed, but he's proud to see his brother win. It seemed like the judges wanted to reward Michael with a win for being a creative stand-out all season long. Justine thinks it could be payback for slighting the innovative Richard Blais during his season.