Lisa's red meat course is the Wagyu beef, "marinated in a coriander garlic oyster sauce," with a chayote and cucumber salad, hot sauce and garlic chips. Stephanie's chosen lamb medallions with maitake mushrooms, braised pistachios, and a blackberry and olive tapenade, while Richard's penultimate offering ("Be The Bacon") consists of pickled radishes, mirin broth and pork belly.
Richard's lack of seasoning surprises Ripert (and me), although he thinks the pickled radish, which Padma cites as having the most flavor on the plate, is "borderline genius." Barber thinks Richard's choice to pressure cook the pork belly left it less crispy than it should have been, while Ayala calls the mirin broth "very under seasoned." Looks like we officially have this season's Casey, also partially undone by an underwhelming pork belly. Sad. Lisa's sous chef and BFF describes the beef flavor as "nice, but it's not tender" and it lacks any garlic flavor. Barber thinks the sauce is "so sweet," while Ripert points out that it's almost like a do-over of the sauce from the shrimp -- "just sweeter," adds Barber. Gail appreciates the acidity of the salad, and Padma, complimenting the knife skills, wonders if that was April's work, only to discover that Lisa did it all by herself. Ripert calls Stephanie's lamb "a big surprise to me" because he'd never think of combining the ingredients, while Ted feels "it's tasting a pistachio in a way that I've never tasted it before" -- ding ding ding! -- and April likes the lightness and brininess of the olives. Gail, upon seeing the olives, expected Stephanie "to crash and burn," but one bite later, she's a disciple. Ripert points out that this is the first dish that has inspired the use of the word "love." Colicchio thinks Richard's dish "needs work," calls Lisa's dish "pedestrian," and pronounces Stephanie's "full of surprises and it works." Just don't fuck up that cake too badly, Stephanie!