9 weeks worth of recap, ending up with Jessica getting her jacket ripped on a peg, and no, that isn't code for anything, even though Ralph did ask if he could watch.
Tonight on HK
Two remain - Ralph, the 36 year old veteran chef from NY and...
Who will win their dream restaurant and claim the title of Master Chef? Hmmmm, I wonder.
Chef Ramsay: Well done to you both. Now the real work starts. One of you whose name is not Ralph will win your very own restaurant. Now enjoy a moment with your families, please.
Ralph kisses and hugs his Buffy, who apologizes for something. I am assuming she's sorry she chose the tuna over the filet mignon.
Michael sucks face with his Lola Pop. Lola is not just a pretty face, she can talk, too, giving Michael words of encouragement.
On the patio
Michael: Dude, I'm worked to the bone. It's been hell.
They both discuss how much they want to win.
Michael: I wonder what the devil's got in store for us today.
Ramsay phones, asking them to come to the dining room for 2 minutes. Ralph tries to dazzle him with his French. Again, not code.
Ramsay: Bon soir. Stupid idiot!
Ralph and Michael have faced many surprises from Satan.
Chef Ramsay congratulates them, then digs in for the kill. He informs Michael he is too calm, and that he needs to be more assertive.
Chef to Ralph: I love your energy, but sometimes you move too quick for your own mind.
When asked, they both say they are going to win.
Chef: This is your final test.
A curtain drops dramatically to divide the restaurant into two sides. One side is Michael's restaurant, the other belongs to Ralph, at least for the time being. They both get to design their dream restaurant, create and write menus, and run the kitchens and dining rooms head to head all on the same night. They have 56 hours to transform Hell's Kitchen into their own restaurants.
John Janavs, who designed HK, is going to help them with their designs. They will also have the help of Jean-Phillipe, the Maitre De, and the Sous Chefs, Scott and Maryann.
Gordon Ramsay: I'll be watching every step of the way.
As John talks to each individually about their design, we find out that Ralph wants a party atmosphere, and Michael likes things plain and simple.
The two finalists meet with JP, who will be supervising the front of the house needs, starting with the waitstaff.
Michael tells JP he wants the men in black trousers and black shirts, and the women also in trousers. He throws out the word "unisex", which confuses JP. Maybe he thought he said "You need sex", judging from the look on JP's face.
Ralph wants the men on his waitstaff to dress differently from the women. JP asks Ralph if he wants the women to wear black panties. I'm thinking Victoria's secret for his waitresses, but Ralph seems as confused as I am.
The restaurant construction begins immediately.
Michael wants halibut, pheasant, duck, and short ribs on his menu. Ralph is talking about sirloin steak and filet mignon, Italian style.
The rooms are starting to take shape, but designer Janavs tells Ralph they only have half the wallpaper they ordered. The other half is arriving at midnight. Hopefully they have enough time to finish. To steal a line from Vols: OH.THE.DRAMA!
Chef Ramsay discusses the two different styles with Janavs. Michael's restaurant is very contemporary, while Ralph's restaurant is 1920's art deco peasant style cooking. Gordon has his concerns about both, but criticizes Ralph for his lack of originality.
2 PM, 29 hours before opening, Sig Dishes
Chef Ramsay: People travel across the world to get to any restaurant with a great signature dish.
I am sure jealous of people right now, since they have money to travel anywhere in the world just to get something good to eat.
Ralph's signature dish is steak for 2 Italian style. Gordon asks if it can be done for one, because couples don't always want the same dish, sleep in the same bed, or even live in the same house. Okay, I have issues, but let's move on.
Michael's sig dish is short ribs oso buco with red garnet yams, finished with natural juices from the braising liquid topped with a real Tahitian black pearl. Okay, the pearl was my idea, but I bet it would be a hit with the customers and look pretty, too.
Michael: It's awesome. I'm so winning this challenge.
Chef Ramsay comments that Ralph's porterhouse steak was very masculine, and Michael's short ribs dish was beautifully braised and very delicate.
They go outside to take the dishes to the public for evaluation. Mmmm, both dishes look good to me. The bottom line is 12 people choose Michael's short ribs. There were only 6 people who preferred Ralph's porterhouse steak, even with Ralph's enthusiastic efforts as a salesman. One man said he liked Michael's food better, but he liked Ralph better as a person.
Michael: I totally blew him out of the water. It felt good.
Ralph: Michael's dish was built for street food, but mine was built to be served in the dining room.
It's never about how the food tastes, though, is it Ralph?
6 PM, 27 hours before the doors open
The pass, also known as the hot plate, is where the head chef controls the kitchen. Until now, it's been the domain of Chef Ramsay. This is where he calls out orders and maintains quality control.
They are going to take turns running the hot plate and cook for the construction team.
Chef: Treat this as if this is your restaurant.
Michael is on the hot plate first.
Ralph: He doesn't have a booming voice.
Chef Ramsay tells Michael he's not loud enough. He has to be vibrant, positioning himself under the hot canopy to be heard.
Michael starts to imitate Chef Ramsay: You guys cook like old people (bleep),
Chef Ramsay looks so proud of his (bleeping) protegy.
On Ralph's turn at the hot plate, he has no problems making himself heard.
Ralph: It's second nature to me.
Michael decides not to put crab in the risotto to test Ralph. Chef tells Ralph to taste all food before it goes out.
JP is ticked at Ralph for calling him Jean-Pierre, instead of Jean-Phillipe, but he doesn't tell him to his face.
A construction worker wearing a hard hat returns the risotto for lack of crab meat. Ralph digs into Michael, but Chef Ramsay tells him it's his responsibility to make sure it's okay before sending it out to the dining room.
Chef: Michael had Ralph look stupid and took him down big time. That was an interesting lesson.
Ralph, barking at Michael: Ice cold, the crab. Ice cold. I got freezer burn.
Yeah, Ralph, along with the burn from Michael. Good one, Mike!
Chef to Ralph: Salmon's broken. You happy with that? You run it like this tomorrow and we're in trouble big time.
Chef tells them their strengths and weaknesses. Michael puts up better quality food, but Ralph is more assertive.
Ralph thinks Michaels crab trick will make him more aware tomorrow during the real test.
Back in their rooms, Michael practices being more like Chef Ramsay, which cracks Ralph up. "Let's go dirty bowls. Come on!"
"I don't (bleeping) care. Don't (bleep) talk. I'm gonna talk to you. You shut your mouth and work."
"Hey, hey, come here. Come here. Now get away and lose some weight."
Ralph: Michael is a rather soft spoken guy.
Michael: Piss off. You address me as Chef, okay?
Ralph: I like it. I like it. I like it.
Michael admits he's worried about how he will come across tomorrow night. He goes outside to talk to the Chef Ramsay billboard in the sky, telling it he can pull this off.
Michael to billboard: Tomorrow you never know what's gonna hit you.
It would be funny if some kid threw a stone at the billboard just then or maybe a bird comes along and... you get the picture.