Food Network Star 7 EP6 Recap

Food Truck Face Off

The ultimate team challenge returns! The remaining finalists are divided into three teams which will conceptualize their food trucks. This year they will also create an advertisement. Tyler Florence pays a visit.

Last week we saw:

Despite putting in the worst performance of the week (again) Chris Nirschel did not get eliminated.  In fact the judges put him in the middle of the pack.  It’s stuff like this that makes people think this show is fixed.  It also lends some Penny With Jylls Husbandvalidation to Alicia Sanchez’s claims that the show is scripted and that Penny and Chris may be actors hired for the show.  Not much, but a little.  Justin Davis was sent home and though he did not have a good week he was still better than Chris.

The other absurdity from last week was Whitney also finishing middle of the pack despite having arguably the best performance of the week while Jeff was handed a win.  Jeff’s effort wasn’t bad mind you just not great and certainly not as good as Whitney.

So glad to be back to a 60 minute format.  This season most of the contestants have been active via social media especially on Twitter – except for two.  I’m thinking that is by design.  Those two may be the ones in the finale.  Just sayin’.

This week:

Truck challenge – finalists are divided into three teams which will conceptualize their food trucks.  This is an annual cross-promotion with the Great Food Truck Race.  That’s why Tyler Florence is a guest judge.  Each teams shoots a 30 second commercial and 150 guests choose which truck to eat from solely based on that commercial.

After six episodes here are my thoughts on each remaining contestant:

Alicia Sanchez – Eliminated week 3.

Chris Nirschel – Every week he doesn’t get eliminated it makes the show look shady. Team Green – Commercial was tacky.  Truck theme is Wrap it Up. Not bad.  His food was weak.  This is the third week that Chris has put in the worst performance but was ranked in the middle of the pack.  What gives, judges?  I’m starting to believe that he’s an actor hired to play the roll.  Nah, maybe not.  Well, maybe.  I don’t know.  I’m sure Chris can cook, he works in NYC and you can’t stay in the game there if you can’t but it just hasn’t shown on the show.

Howie Drummond – Eliminated week 1.

Jeff Mauro – Great on camera, fair in the kitchen.  He’s an extremely likable guy.  Had his best week last week.  Team Blue – Commercial was sophomoric. “Balls on the Roll” was not a good idea after the judges had already poo poo’d his “Between the Buns” POV.  The truck theme on the other hand rocks.  Balls from various cuisines is a great idea.  Food was great.

Juba Kali – Eliminated week 2.

Justin Balmes – Eliminated week 4.

Justin Davis – Eliminated week 5.

Jyll Everman – Last week she took a step back. Team Yellow – Great commercial.  Fierce tacos is a great concept.  Great food.  Jyll didn’t get as much face time this week but after last week that’s a good thing.  What time she did get she was pleasant and warm.  She still a force to contend with.

Katy Clark – Eliminated week 2.

Mary Beth Albright – Her roller coaster continues.  Last week she was up and down in the same episode – good on camera, not so much on food.  Could be a make or break week for her.  Team Green – Commercial was tacky.  Truck theme is Wrap it Up. Not bad.  Mary Beth stepped up when Penny mismanaged her time. She had to work the crowd to keep people from leaving while waiting for Penny’s food.  Her food was bleh, again.  Bottom three.

Orchid Paulmeier –  At this point she is more Aria than Aarti.  She needs to get her mojo back.  Team Yellow – Great commercial.  Fierce tacos is a great concept.  Food was good.  She seemed scared to talk but Jyll and Vic over powered her.  The judges agreed.  Her food wasn’t great.  Bottom three.

Penny Davidi – My guess is we are stuck with her until sweeps begin in August.  Every year there is a contestant that, thanks in part to editing, is made to look like a villain, Penny had settled in nicely to her niche. Team Green – Commercial was tacky.  Truck theme is Wrap it Up. Not bad.  Penny mismanaged her time and Mary Beth had to bail her out.   Still she failed to get her food ready in time to open.  She single handily blew her team’s chances.  Her food was good.

Susie Jimenez – She had a top 3 finish and is starting to put it all together.  I’m still not sold on her as a strong contender, yet.  Team Blue – Commercial was sophomoric.  Balls from various cuisines is a great idea.  Her food was very good.  Another good week, she’s a contender now.

Vic “Vegas” Moea – Three good weeks in a row.  Vic seems to be settling into the zone.  At this point it may be his contest to lose.  Team Yellow – Great commercial.  Fierce tacos is a great concept.  His food was off the hook.  Vic is the clear favorite now.

Whitney Chen – She, along with Vic, had the best week last time around.  Can’t understand why the judges voted Jeff above her last week.  That just don’t fig-ur.  Team Blue – Commercial was sophomoric.  Balls from various cuisines is a great idea.  Her felafel didn’t hold together well.  It may cost her.  Bottom three.

Be sure to check out the WTVC Food Network Star Polls HERE.  Don’t forget to follow the live Tweeting with Serena, Bobby, Giada, myself and who ever else stops by.  Last week we had drive-by Tweets from Whitney Chen, Mary Beth Albright and Jyll Everman.

Top Tweets:

[blackbirdpie url=”!/sarahblankman/status/90214144904663040″]

[blackbirdpie url=”!/JylliciousE/status/90111391037534208″]

[blackbirdpie url=”!/JessIzAwsum/status/90217860730851328″]

[blackbirdpie url=”!/FlashySoupCan/status/90227009606791168″]

[blackbirdpie url=”!/chefjustind/status/90229468395868160″]


“In it to Win it” type quotes – 1.

Number of people crying – 2.

Number of WTF moments – 3 – Jeff’s balls, Penny’s meow, Penny’s asking Mary Beth for help and the denying it to the judges.

Who should win based on what we’ve seen so far: Vic

Who will win based on what we’ve seen in the past: Susie or Vic

Winner(s) Susie, Vic, Penny – overall winner was Vic.

The finalist(s) who will be going home is . . .

[ad] Empty ad slot (#1)!


Check out my mourning-after exit interview with each banished foodie HERE.

4 Responses to Food Network Star 7 EP6 Recap

  • darian duncan says:

    Some observations I’ve made while watching the next food network show this year…bob wears way too much makeup, the people who should be kicked off aren’t (i.e., marybeth & chris), and the huge mancrush chris has for vic. Of all contestants, orchid gone :sad: hmmm…now who will i pull for???

  • darian says:

    i've made a few observations lately concerning the show: why is susie gone so often? not that i like her that much anyway. is it just me or does bob wear way too much make up? does chris have a huge man crush on vic or what? can penny get along with anyone? who would want to eat anywhere with balls in their name, especially with that awful commercial? who can i pull for now that orchid is gone :(

  • Katherine says:

    I think Vic is the best chef there so far. Penny needs a atuidue ajustment. Mary Beth is next to Vic in cooking.

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Stuart is a celebrity chef, food activist and award-winning food writer. He penned the cookbooks Third Coast Cuisine: Recipes of the Gulf of Mexico, No Sides Needed: 34 Recipes To Simplify Life and Amigeauxs - Mexican/Creole Fusion Cuisine. He hosts two Internet cooking shows "Everyday Gourmet" and "Little Grill Big Flavor." His recipes have been featured in Current, Lagniappe, Southern Tailgater, The Kitchen Hotline and on the Cooking Channel.

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