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Ben Caylor the seventh cook cut from 'Hell's Kitchen's fourth edition


By Christopher Rocchio, 05/14/2008 

Ben Caylor stood up to Gordon Ramsay and paid the price.

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The 29-year-old electrician and former chef from Charlotte, NC became the seventh culinary contestant cut from Hell's Kitchen's fourth season during last night's broadcast of the Fox reality competition series.

"I gave 100%.  I gave everything I had.  I put everything into it," said Ben after his ouster.  "You know in your heart if I'm the one for your kitchen or not, and I'm not going to blow smoke up your ass to try to get there."

Hell's Kitchen's seventh fourth-season episode began following the previous dinner service, which saw Gordon eliminate Shayna Raichilson-Zadok.  Up in the dorms, Ben continued to bicker with Matt, a 35-year-old sous chef from Pinehill, NJ -- with mostly Matt on the offensive after Gordon granted his wish to move to the all-female Red Team the next morning.

"I'm not f**king afraid of anyone!" boldly stated Matt.  "At least I don't hide behind anyone.  Chef Ramsay knew that and I proved it.  That's why I'm still here.  Keep hiding behind [Bobby, a 37-year-old executive chef from Niagara Falls, NY] Ben, because that's all your good for."

"He is a nut job," commented Ben.  "The girls don't even have an inkling what this guy's about."

It's not as though the girls were excited about taking on Matt, as Corey, a 25-year-old private chef from Brooklyn, NY, said it was "unfair" the Red Team was saddled with Matt -- especially considering they had just cut Shayna, one of their "weakest players."

"He's not on our team," said Corey about Matt.  "I'm sorry but he's Blue and he'll always be Blue."

The next morning, the nine remaining contestants gathered in the kitchen where they were met by Gordon -- who prepared three dishes to test their pallets.  Each contestant tasted Gordon's three dishes -- chicken parmesan, beef stew and sausage ravioli -- and were asked to identify the missing ingredient. 

What they didn't know was that the missing ingredient was meat in each dish, as Gordon had instead used soy-based products.  None of the contestants could tell the meat was missing, which "disgusted" Gordon. 

However he gave them a chance to redeem themselves with the next challenge, which would see the contestants competing in a head-to-head taste off. Since the Red Team had one additional member, Gordon asked Jen, a 24-year-old line cook from Chicago, IL, to sit out.  She begrudgingly obliged.

The first round saw Petrozza, a 47-year-old catering director from Charlotte, NC, face Rosann, a 33-year-old receptionist and former cook from Staten Island, NY.  While Petrozza was able to correctly identify chicken and Rosann wasn't, she was able to get sweet potato and nectarine, which he missed -- giving the Red Team a 2-1 lead.

The second round saw Corey square-off against Louross, a 24-year-old hotel cook from Las Vegas, NV.  Neither contestant did very well, as Louross missed meatloaf, watercress and turnips, with Corey only able to correctly identify turnips.

With the Red Team having a 3-1 lead, the third round saw Bobby battling Christina, a 25-year-old culinary student from St. Louis, MO.  Christina missed shrimp but nailed radish and chopped truffle, while Bobby missed all three to give the Red Team a commanding 5-1 lead.

The final round was billed as a battle of the ages by Gordon, with Ben squaring off against Matt.  Gordon prepared a basic clam chowder, and Matt and Ben would have alternating ingredient guesses.  Ben was flawless in his guessing -- but so was Matt, and since the Red Team already had such a huge lead he clinched the challenge for his team.

For their reward, the dorm's patio had been transformed into a spa where the Red Team would be able to receive massages, facials, manicures and pedicures.  For their punishment, the Blue Team had to clean the dorms where the contestants had been living.  In addition, Ben had to serve the Red Team ice tea as they were being pampered.

While they were being tended to, Corey came right out and told Matt he'd be on the chopping block if the Red Team were to lose the next dinner service.

"I'll tell you what, I don't care when you send me home," answered Matt.  "I just want to see Ben leave before me.  So let's kick ass tonight."

Hell's Kitchen's sixth fourth-season dinner service commenced, with a return to fine dining after hosting everything from a Sweet 16 birthday party to a family night.

The first orders came into both kitchens, and Ben immediately seemed despondent when he failed to properly address Gordon.  Rosann failed to deliver on the appetizers in the Red kitchen, as she overcooked the scallops on one side and undercooked them on the other.  Corey called Rosann "very scatterbrained."  However Rosann's second attempts at the scallops were complimented by Gordon, and he further encouraged her to "wake up."

Forty-five minutes into the service and all the Red Team's appetizers were out -- however the same couldn't be said for the Blue Team, as Louross delayed his scallops from being served, which delayed Bobby.  While Gordon criticized Bobby for his lack of communication, Bobby basically made excuses and blamed Louross.  So Gordon yelled at Louross too.

As the Red Team worked on their entrees, Gordon had a few words for Jen after she started calling out orders, calling it "confusing."

"Chef Ramsay, he's got it out for me," opined Jen.  "He supposedly likes vocal people -- he wants a leader, he wants somebody to stand out.  Now I guess he's on his period or whatever today so he gets pissed off at me when I try to be vocal and be the leader."

After Jen got yelled at, she just "shut down," according to Christina.  The Blue Team attempted to serve cold and raw lobster, which caused Ben to get yelled at since he was on the meat station.  Matt took great pleasure in hearing Ben get yelled at, and the situation only improved for the Red Team when Christina's beef was complimented for being "perfectly cooked."

With half of the Red Team's entrees already served, the Blue Team was still working on the majority of its appetizers.  Petrozza was criticized for his messy work station, which Gordon said consisted of "crap on top of crap on top of crap."  Gordon then complimented Matt's risotto, calling it the best risotto he's ever had.

"It's the best feeling I ever had in my life," gushed Matt.  "I want to hug the man."

Things weren't going so well for Ben in the Blue kitchen, as Gordon asked when the beef Wellingtons would be ready and he gave a BS answer.  Ben then dug a deeper hole for himself when he told Gordon the kitchen was out of lamb -- 90 minutes into the dinner service!

"You tell me now!" asked Gordon.  "Ah f**k!  Can you wake up!"

"Ben wanted to use me as a scapegoat and put me out there and say I'm the weakest and I hide behind everyone," boasted Matt.  "The scapegoat's no longer there, and you've got no one to blame."

It wasn't entirely peachy keen in the Red kitchen, as Rosann served raw salmon and Jen was accused of being "cocky" by Gordon while she continued to mope around.  Gordon then yelled at both girls, but mostly took his anger out on Jen.

"You're one f**king cocky lady for someone who knows jack s**t.  You know that?" asked Gordon of Jen.  "Your so far up your own ass you don't even know how cocky you are!"   He then threw a tray of plates on her work station.

"I can't believe that man," said Jen.  "For him to turn around and throw a f**king full-ass tray of food on my station?  I guess it's my time to go.  Nobody disrespects me like that.  I'm getting tired of this s**t right now.  I really am."

More than two hours into the service and food had ceased to come out of both kitchens, but what was even worse was that food was also coming back to the Blue kitchen -- as Ben's Wellingtons weren't cooked properly.  Gordon told Ben to shut his station down, but Ben had other ideas.

"Are we done?" Ben asked Gordon.  "Because if we're not, I'm going to complete my station tonight chef."

"Shut it down!" yelled Gordon.  "Stop it!"

The dinner service ended, and Gordon labeled both teams as "overconfident, lazy, slow and somewhat pathetic."  However he credited Matt for having "bounced back" before revealing the Blue Team had lost.  Each member would have to come up with one nominee for elimination.

Up in the dorms and clearly feeling insecure about his standing in the competition, Ben came up with a strategy.

"I'm nominating myself because I'm not selling the three of you guys out," said Ben, and his buddy Bobby agreed to the plan.

"I am definitely not going to nominate myself," said Louross.  "It feels like Ben is trying to play everybody for a fool."

Ben told Bobby he wished Louross would just "man up" and nominate himself, which prompted Bobby to suggest they just nominate Louross.  Ben liked the idea and called Petrozza into the room to see if he'd go along with the plan.  Ben explained Louross was "probably the weakest one on the team," however Petrozza still wouldn't agree to the plan.

Back in the kitchen, Louross nominated Ben, who returned the favor by nominated Louross, and Bobby nominated Petrozza.  Gordon implored Petrozza to "speak from the heart" with his nomination, so he did and nominated himself.

"Your level of maturity stands out," said Gordon.  "You're the most gracious man on that team."

Gordon then eliminated Ben.

"Ben left a manual labor job digging ditches to get back into cooking," said Gordon.  "But all he did in Hell's Kitchen was dig himself into a hole -- a hole to deep to get out of."

Hell's Kitchen's next fourth-season episode will air Tuesday, May 20 at 9PM ET/PT on Fox, with one of the five remaining females joining the Blue Team to even out the numbers.

(Photo credit Fox)


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