While Hung Huynh was a deserving winner, he was so far ahead of the other chefs in technique and consistency that it seemed unimaginable he'd lose after about the fourth episode. Season Four – Chicago One of the stronger seasons talent-wise, Season Four gave us the high-tech antics of Richard Blais, the douchy hats of Spike Mendelsohn, and the locker-punching rage of Dale Talde (who could reliably be counted on to fly off the handle even when guesting in later seasons, at least until he turned up for having apparently received a personality transplant). Season Eight – New York The premise for this season was so amazing — take all the most interesting and talented chefs eliminated from previous seasons and bring them back, with heavy "one shot at redemption" pathos — that it really should have been our top season.
Highlights: Dale Levitski's bravado; "I'm a big gay chef and I'm going to kick your ass" can still be heard among certain groups of men. The final four included two level-headed female chefs, Antonia Lofaso and eventual winner, Stephanie Izard, as well as the dyspeptic Lisa Fernandes. We would feel more sympathy for him had he ever shut up about it; to this day, he has not. But despite an exciting start (including a truly diabolical challenge that found the cheftestants remaking the meals that'd gotten them booted the first time around), the season has sagged in recent weeks.
As far as cheftestants go, Season Three's were a talented if not terribly colorful group.
Sweaty palookas Joey Paulino and Howie Kleinberg first fought, then learned to love; the otherwise competent Casey Thompson revealed that she was not very good at chopping onions.
Obnoxious bald guys were a recurring trope of Season Five; winner Hosea Rosenberg distinguished himself not through his food but by cheating on his girlfriend, on camera, with the equally milquetoast Leah Cohen.
(Look, if you're going to cheat on your girlfriend, make sure you're not on a reality show.
In an effort to spice things up, the producers devised some of the goofiest and most contrived challenges the show had ever seen.