With the cheftestants gone, the judges discuss the dishes. Gail loved Eli's sauces but the lamb was so bad, and Padma thinks it was the worst lamb they saw. They discuss how Jennifer's salmon was uneven. Tom liked Kevin's dish, but thought it was so simple that it would get kicked out of a real competition. Back in the stew room, Kevin offers up his defense again, which is that he concentrated more on food that tasted good and was cooked properly, and given that most of his opponents screwed up the cooking of their protein, that's tough to argue. But Kevin is really sure he's leaving.
Tom thought Michael had good technique and presentation. Padma points out that usually Michael is able to create complex dishes that taste good, but that wasn't the case this week. Padma brings up the bone in the salmon again, which would disqualify you in the real competition. Tom thought Bryan had good technique, but he couldn't execute it, and his dish should probably be on the bottom as it was served. If he had executed properly, he would be in the top. Back in the stew room, Kevin tells Bryan that he obviously knew what perfect was, and just messed up on execution, which happens to the best of them.
The cheftestants return to hear who was on top and who's going home. It's much more exciting since all of the cheftestants are there to hear it. Jerome Bocuse announces that this week's winner is Kevin. He's shocked, as Padma reminds him that he gets $30,000, the chance to compete to be on the Bocuse d'Or team, and he made the finals. Kevin interviews that the prize is almost his annual salary, and he's learned that he should trust his gut instincts. Aw, Kev. I'm kind of rooting for him too.
And now the remaining four have to sweat it out to see who's going home. Tom tells Eli that his dish was solid, but lacked execution. Jennifer's cooking was uneven. Bryan reached high and didn't quite make it. Michael's cucumber tartar wasn't as technically perfect as they expect at this point. Hmm, that's the first time a specific garnish was mentioned. Anyway, obviously they each had pros and cons, but tonight, Eli is the one told to pack his knives and go. I have to take my hat off to the editors -- while I'm sure most viewers would have predicted weeks ago that this would be our final four, they did a good job of keeping us guessing and not feeling like it was a foregone conclusion. Anyway, Eli says that he's okay with going home at this point, because he thinks that the people that beat him are great chefs. He admits that it hasn't really hit him yet. Once he exits the room, Tom congratulates Jen and the Brothers Volt for making the finals. They're all really sad back in the Stew Room, with many tears shed. I think Eli should be proud. I never thought he would make the finals, and frankly, didn't think he would make it this far, so good for him. Maybe he can move out of his parents' basement now.