Brad Miller the seventh chef eliminated from Fox's 'Hell's Kitchen 3'
By Christopher Rocchio, 07/17/2007
Brad Miller took on a leadership role but was unable to rise to the occasion, and as a result, foul-mouthed culinary king Gordon Ramsay made the 25-year-old sous chef from Scottsdale, AZ the seventh wannabe chef and restaurateur eliminated from the third season of Fox's Hell's Kitchen during last night's broadcast.
Hell's Kitchen 3's seventh episode began after the previous dinner service challenge, with both the all-male Blue team and all-female Red team realizing that they were now evenly divided following the elimination of Melissa Firpo. The next morning, the teams awoke for what Gordon described as a "completely different challenge," explaining they'd be trying to make a meal out of leftovers. Each team would have 30 minutes to make three dishes -- one appetizer and two entrees -- using the same tray of leftover ingredients: white wine; spaghetti; vegetable stock; beef; and chicken.
"This is a test I give every chef that walks into my kitchen, turning leftovers into something stunning," said Gordon.
Brad quickly took the lead in the Blue kitchen, explaining how he "just started putting ingredients together." However in the Red kitchen, Jen Yemola, a 26-year-old pastry chef from Hazelton, PA; Bonnie Muirhead, a 26-year-old nanny and personal chef from Los Angeles, CA; and Julia Williams, a 28-year-old short-order cook from Atlanta, GA, couldn't even decide what they wanted to make as the clock continued to tick.
"We have to think of something to do," said Julia with nearly half of the time expired. As the Red team bantered around ideas, they finally came-up with some simple dishes to serve with just under 10 minutes left. Josh Wahler, a 26-year-old junior sous chef from Miami Beach, FL, said he was "incredibly confident" in his Blue team's chances of winning the challenge.
When time expired, Gordon told the teams he'd be judging their dishes on resourcefulness and creativity. Brad went first, and presented a curry bass with crustacean tomato pasta, a dish that made Bonnie feel embarrassed by what she was about to present. Gordon realized a lot of work went into Brad's dish, and while the same couldn't be said for Bonnie's rustic chicken soup, Gordon still thought it was "fresh." He awarded both the Red and Blue teams a point because he couldn't decide which was better.
"I didn't think mine was going to be a draw, to tell you the truth," said Brad. "I thought my dish was superior."
Jen went next and presented a "classic take" on steak and eggs, which caused Gordon to comment he expected a little bit more from her at this stage of the competition. Of course, Jen said steak and eggs was Bonnie's idea and lamented she didn't decide to do something else. Josh then presented a chicken dish, and Gordon quickly realized it was "highly acidic" and the chicken wasn't cooked all the way through.
"It's just crap," Gordon told Josh. "I'm disappointed in both of you. Zero for both of you."
With the score tied, it was time for Rock Harper, a 30-year-old executive chef from Spotsylvania, VA, and Julia to present their teams' final dishes. Rock made a surf and turf, which Gordon thought was "delicious" and done with "finesse." While Julia couldn't see anything that would go wrong with her dish -- fish and chips -- Gordon begged to differ. "It's nice," he said, "but it's fish and chips."
Gordon awarded the challenge victory to the Blue team. For their punishment, the Red team would have to perform some "Spring cleaning" around Hell's Kitchen restaurant and also check-in all of the day's deliveries. For their reward, the Blue team had the opportunity to take-on Gordon in a paintball competition.
"You can shoot the hell out of me," Gordon told the guys, who seemed pleased with their reward.
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As the girls finished cleaning, they mindlessly rushed through checking in the deliveries, causing several of them to be wrong. Bonnie felt guilty and was promptly yelled at by Hell's Kitchen restaurant's staff. The guys enjoyed their day of paintball with Gordon, who put his skills as a former footballer in the U.K. to good use. Josh described Gordon as a "quick guy." When the Blue team returned from their reward, the Red team was still brining in the correct delivery orders. Despite being asked to assist them, the Blue team declined.
"I feel like an old man," commented Bonnie.
The Red team's back-breaking labor was behind them the next morning when they awoke to begin preparing for that night's dinner service challenge, which Gordon described as "the most serious service so far in Hell's Kitchen." Both teams would be creating their own menus for the dinner service, which would consist of three appetizers, three entrees and three desserts. Each team then had one hour to create their menus, and Gordon reminded them their success was contingent on "creativity, excitement and teamwork."
Bonnie and Jen immediately began to worry about Julia when she didn't know what Ahi tuna was. Meanwhile Brad was doing all the talking in the Blue kitchen in an attempt to take control, shooting down Rock and Josh's ideas left and right. "If I'm going to be here I'm going to showcase my talent," said Brad. "I'm not going to sit back and do simple things." Julia suggested steak for Red's menu, which Bonnie thought was a "cop out," instead suggesting rabbit. Jen was "getting pissed off" at Red's menu selections, and Bonnie pleaded with her not to act like a bitch.
"Don't call me a bitch," said Jen to Bonnie, who responded, "Don't act like one."
Gordon then began to approve the menus, and asked Julia out of the Red team's nine dishes, how many had her influence. Julia answered "none" and said she wanted steak and shrimp on the menu, so Gordon put it on. "That's something that I order when I go out to eat, so I think it will be a big seller," said Julia. Meanwhile Gordon thought Blue's menu sounded ambitious and made sure they were up for the challenge. As they began to prep their kitchens, communication started to break down for the girls.
Hell's Kitchen 3's seventh dinner service challenge commenced, with each customer getting to choose if they wanted to order from the Red or Blue menu. The Red team's menu consisted of "classic dishes" -- Julia's New York strip steak; Jen's seared Ahi tuna; and Bonnie's bacon-wrapped leg of rabbit. The Blue team's menu consisted of "sophisticated dishes" -- Brad's turbo and mushroom consomme; Brad's lamb chop with herb gnocchi; and Brad's sauteed chicken breast.
The Red kitchen's menu received the first order in what would be an early trend, as tickets were coming fast and furiously at Jen, Bonnie and Julia. Bonnie's idea of rabbit quickly took a turn for the worse when she revealed she was unaware how to cook it. Thirty minutes into the dinner service and the Blue kitchen finally received its first orders, and Brad made sure the appetizers went out quickly. Unfortunately they went out a little too fast, as some ravioli got sent back for being too cold, which Brad blamed on his nerves.
The Red appetizers were also being pushed out quickly, and despite her lack of knowledge on how to correctly prepare it, Bonnie's rabbit was receiving some rave reviews. As customers started to place orders for Red's entrees, it was clear Julia's New Your strip steak was the most popular choice, and she was up to the task of preparing as many as needed, which brought a compliment from Gordon. Meanwhile the lamb Josh was preparing was slow to be ready and even once he said it was done, Gordon said it wasn't, sent it back, and gave him a tongue lashing to boot.
"You can't cook... That's just been confirmed to me," Gordon whispered to Josh before warning that his elimination was coming.
Two hours into the dinner service and Red had received 52 orders while Blue was at 48, however the men were still looking to push-out their first entree. Rock tried to calm down Josh, who was visibly shaken and didn't seem to know where his head was. But it didn't help, as Josh's lamb was undercooked and not servable for a second time, causing Gordon to ask Rock and Josh to help him.
"You cannot turn your back on [Josh]," instructed Gordon to Rock and Brad, however that's exactly what they decided to do. "Nobody's coming over to help... What's going on?" wondered Josh. "Everything just got held up and it sucked. Trust yourself to get yourself out."
Using that mantra, Josh finally got the lamb right on his third attempt, as Gordon commented it was "perfect" and "absolutely beautiful," which the customers agreed with. The Blue kitchen finally caught-up with Red, and eventually overtook them. It seemed as though the Red kitchen was falling apart, as Gordon even caught Bonnie attempting to cook something -- but her stove burners weren't even on.
More than two-and-a-half hours into the service and almost all of Blue's entrees had been sent out, but some were finding their way back to the kitchen. Gordon commented that Brad's lamb looked and tasted like "baby vomit," while Red's lack of communication continued to slow them down considerably.
"No one's even talking to each other!" yelled Gordon at the Red kitchen before he kicked a garbage can (or rubbish bin, depending on what side of Atlantic you're from). More than three hours into the service and Red's entrees had stalled, causing Gordon to yell once again. "Why is no one concentrating! Why is this so f**king hard!?" Despite not having an answer for his question, the Red kitchen was able to serve the rest of their entrees as the Blue kitchen quickly pushed out their desserts. As the dinner service challenge came to an end, both teams opined that they had lost.
"One of us is going home tonight, you know that?" Jen told Bonnie. "We definitely lost and I'm definitely out of here," said Josh. Gordon told the Red team that they lacked stamina during the challenge, while Josh was "clearly a disaster." However that wasn't his biggest problem with the Blue kitchen.
"The one issue that I'm not comfortable is how Brad and Rock didn't come to [Josh's] aid," said Gordon. "No one jumped on that section and pulled it back... No one. You may think it was [Josh] that suffered. But the only people that suffered were the customers." Gordon concluded by saying there was no winning team, but added he was most impressed with Julia, who would have the task of nominating either Jen or Bonnie.
"Not one steak came back," explained Gordon. "But what scares me is that that dish was so nearly not on the menu. Yet it turned out to be the most popular." He then told the Blue team they'd have to decide together which one of themselves to nominate for elimination.
Julia told Bonnie and Jen she hadn't decided anything yet as they sat down to discuss the nominations. While she complimented both, Julia ultimately determined Bonnie could "just be a little stronger on execution." Bonnie realized her shortcomings, and hoped she would be pitted against Josh because that would give her the best chance of staying. While Brad pointed out "none of us want to go home" on the Blue team, Josh opined that he was sick of being the "whipping boy" and constantly being nominated. Brad was quick to note Josh was Rock's whipping boy, not his.
Julia then informed Gordon that she was nominating Bonnie, explaining that despite her "great culinary experience" she lacks execution. Brad told Gordon that he was the Blue team's nominee because they thought he "took a little too much control over the menu." Rock said that wasn't exactly right.
"He tried to take the leadership reigns today," said Rock. "We think that led us to be unsuccessful."
Brad then defended himself but was interrupted by Rock, and the two began to bicker. "I can see team spirit's high as always," said a sarcastic Gordon. Brad continued to flub his chance to defend himself, while Bonnie said she "just needed more time" to learn how to execute. Gordon then eliminated Brad.
"Tonight I was looking for a leader, and all you were was a cook," Gordon told Brad.
"Rock and Josh know that I'm the better chef, and I think it was their decision to vote me off because I was the biggest competition," opined Brad. "I still think I'm the best."
Hell's Kitchen 3's eighth episode will air Monday, July 23 at 9PM ET/PT on Fox, with the Top 5 finalists merging to form one kitchen.