Hell's Kitchen (U.S. season 12)

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Hell's Kitchen (U.S. season 12)
Country of origin United States
No. of episodes 20
Original network Fox
Original release March 13 (2014-03-13) – July 24, 2014 (2014-07-24)
Season chronology
← Previous
Season 11
Next →
Season 13
List of Hell's Kitchen episodes

Season 12 of the American competitive reality television series Hell's Kitchen premiered on March 13, 2014 on Fox.

Gordon Ramsay returned as the head chef as well as Andi Van Willigan and James Avery as the red team's and blue team's sous chefs respectively. Jean-Philippe Susilovic also returned as the maître d'. This was the fourth season to feature an all-male final (following seasons 1, 6, and 9).

Executive Chef Scott Commings won this season and received a head chef position at Gordon Ramsay Pub & Grill in Caesars Palace in Las Vegas; the prize was retained from the previous season, after Ja'Nel Witt failed her drug test.[1] Scott was nominated seven times for elimination, breaking Christina Machamer's record (season 4) of five nominations, and became the Hell's Kitchen winner with the most nominations.

Opening sequence[edit]

The intro is stylized as a neo-noir comic book with the chefs each trying to claim hold of "The Knife Case of Destiny."


Twenty chefs competed in season 12. Jason Zepaltas previously competed in season 9 but left before the first dinner service after falling ill during prep. He is the second chef to have competed in two seasons, after Robert Hesse (seasons 5 and 6), and Zepaltas was the first and currently the only chef to present two signature dishes to Ramsay.

Contestant[2] Age Occupation Hometown
Michael "Mike" Aresta 38 Chef Instructor Keyport, New Jersey
Rochelle Bergman 27 Catering Chef Riverside, California
Scott Commings 36 Executive Chef Woodstock, Illinois
Michael "DeMarco" DeMarco 29 Line Cook Scranton, Pennsylvania
Christopher "Chris" Eversole 27 Line Cook Las Vegas, Nevada
Melanie Finch 24 Line Cook Woodland Hills, California
Sandra Flores 36 Sous Chef Queens, New York
Michael "Gabriel" Gabriel 26 Executive Chef Spring, Texas
Simone Hammond 43 Buffet Cook Henderson, Nevada
Ralph Johnson 28 Chef De Partie (Line Cook) Boston, Massachusetts
Beverly "Bev" Lazo–Gonzalez 42 Food Truck Chef Whittier, California
Richard Mancini 48 Executive Chef Bloomingdale, Illinois
Gaurav Navin 34 Executive Chef East Stroudsburg, Pennsylvania
Joy Parham–Thomas 25 Kitchen Supervisor Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Nicole Rutz 33 Baker Morganville, New Jersey
Bethany "Beth" Taylor 43 Line Cook Independence, Louisiana
Antonio "Anton" Testino 39 Head Chef Butler, New Jersey
Jessica Vogel 29 Line Cook Spring Lake, New Jersey
Jason Zepaltas 31 Sous Chef Chicago, Illinois
Kashia Zollicoffer 23 Line Cook Carthage, Mississippi

Contestant progress[edit]

Original teams First switch Second switch Individual Finals
No. Chef 1201 1202 1203 1204 1205 1206 1207 1208 1209/1210 1210 1211 1212 1213 1214 1215/1216 1217 1218 1219 1220
19 Nicole NOM OUT
20 Gaurav OUT
  1. ^ a b c d e Chef was nominated by Ramsay
  2. ^ a b c Although nominated, chef was not called down by Ramsay
  3. ^ Chef was immune from elimination
  4. ^ Chef was eliminated by Ramsay during service
  5. ^ Chef participated in the "Cook for your life" challenge
  6. ^ Chef was eliminated in the "Cook for your life" challenge


No. in
Title Original air date U.S. viewers
167 1 "20 Chefs Compete" March 13, 2014 (2014-03-13) 5.45[4]

20 chefs were taken on a bus to Hell's Kitchen. Chef Ramsay greeted them and mentioned that Los Angeles is known not only for its cuisine, but for its entertainment. Cooks and diners then danced to the show's theme song while Ramsay had the chefs go to the kitchen for their first challenge.

Team challenge/signature dish: The women competed against the men and had 45 minutes to create their signature dish, judged by Ramsay.[3] Ramsay gave points to Anton's pork and crabmeat crust surf and turf over Simone's Peach and Crab Apple chutney pork chop, Jason's seared and braised wild salmon over Nicole's halibut filet (Jason previously competed in Season 9, but left during the first episode after he was hospitalized for shortness of breath. He stated that this was caused by dehydration), Chris' Cornish hen over Joy's chilled corn soup, Kashia's New York strip over Mike's herb-fried tortellini with romesco sauce. During the judging, Mike revealed that the tortellini was store-bought, and the sauce was made with canned tomatoes. Ramsay, disgusted, dumped out his dish. When sent back in line, Mike muttered an insult, causing Chef Ramsay to pull him back out and berate him. Melanie's pan-seared scallops scored over Richard's pan-roasted sea bass and Bev's Southeast Asian-style fish tacos scored over Gabriel's stuffed chicken breast. Neither Gaurav's afreen tuna pulao or Sandra's tender cod filet scored a point, Beth's pecan-crusted catfish scored over DeMarco's ricotta gnocchi with roasted tomato creme and sausage and Ralph's New England lobster dish scored over Rochelle's mushroom chicken with asparagus. Lastly, Jessica's rosemary-crusted venison loin with goat cheese polenta scored over Scott's herb-roasted rack of lamb, giving the women a 5–4 win and marking the third consecutive season the women won the signature dish challenge.

Reward/punishment: The women had dinner with Ramsay at his GastroPub while the men prepped the dining room and the kitchens. Mike sat out of the punishment, angering his teammates since he was responsible for their loss.

Service: Chris and Melanie served tableside chicken Caesar salad. No appetizers were served; in the blue kitchen, DeMarco overcooked lobster, Gabriel served uneven scallops and Gaurav served soupy and peppery risotto, angering Ramsay when he tasted with his fingers. In the red kitchen, Joy, Nicole and Sandra struggled to work together and argued over a lack of communication, causing Ramsay to kick them out. Both teams were kicked out when both Gabriel and Kashia overcooked scallops. Ramsay noted it as the worst opening service in the show's history.

Elimination: Sandra, Nicole, Gaurav and DeMarco were nominated. Ramsay eliminated Gaurav for his poor performance on appetizers and nonchalant attitude.

Ramsay's comment: "There's so many things about India that I love. It's a shame Gaurav isn't one of them."
168 2 "19 Chefs Compete" March 20, 2014 (2014-03-20) 5.34[5]

The chefs were woken up by bikers performing stunts inside a spherical cage.

Team challenge: The chefs worked in pairs in a "chef's relay", where they pedaled tricycles to a cooking area and aimed to finish prepping all five areas first. Since the men had one less member, Gabriel went twice. DeMarco and Richard finished before Kashia and Bev cleaning shrimp, Jessica and Beth finished before Anton and Chris breaking down chicken, Jason and Gabriel passed Melanie and Simone cleaning oysters, Mike and Scott finished before Sandra and Nicole filleting trout and Ralph and Gabriel finished before Joy and Rochelle making egg white omelets, giving the men their first challenge win.

Reward/punishment: The men had a meal with Ramsay in San Francisco and enjoyed a city tour on Segways. The women picked carrots and made stock. During punishment, Nicole's quiet behavior gets on Keisha's nerve, leading to an argument about the former's lack of passion.

Service: Mike and Sandra served tableside oysters, but Mike inadvertently served a couple of red tables. In the blue kitchen, Jason served bland risotto and DeMarco cooked tuna in a cold pan on appetizers, but both recovered. Scott and Gabriel mixed up cooking times on entrees, and after Scott served raw halibut and Gabriel served raw chicken twice, Ramsay threw the men out. In the red kitchen, Simone and Nicole failed to serve an appetizer and were thrown out, and though Kashia did well on meat, Beth struggled on lobster and served raw halibut, causing Ramsay to throw the women out. Ramsay again named both teams losers.

Elimination: DeMarco, Gabriel, Beth, and Simone were nominated. However, Ramsay eliminated Nicole, feeling her negative attitude and lack of passion, cooking ability, fight back and leadership outweighed the mistakes made by the four nominees.

Ramsay's comment: "I'm not looking for a line cook. But if I were, I still wouldn't have hired Nicole. She was useless."
169 3 "18 Chefs Compete" March 27, 2014 (2014-03-27) 5.39[6]

The chefs were woken up by pigs running through the dorms; each chef carried a pig outside.

Team challenge: The teams had to dig up potatoes, three chefs a time, until one team reached 100 pounds. While the women's blue team won that part of the challenge, they were then informed it was not all of it, they also had to create potato dishes. Each team then picked five dishes for Ramsay to rate from 1–5. Jessica's sweet potato succotash and Richard's Irish Colcannon both scored 4, Sandra's Pancetta Sofrito and Ralph's potato salad both scored 3, Jason's potato gratin scored 4 while Bev's potato hash scored 2 and Melanie's gnocchi scored 4 while Mike's boulangerie scored 1. Lastly, Scott's potato souffle scored 4, but Joy's pierogi scored 5, giving the women an 18–16 victory.

Reward/punishment: The women had a private dinner on a yacht while the men had to clean the livestock. During dinner service prep, DeMarco cut himself and was sent to urgent care and Rochelle fell sick. Simone also fell unwell, but her team believed she was faking it.

Service: Kashia and Ralph served tableside Steak Diane. Guests in attendance for this service include Senen "Sen Dog" Reyes and EC Twins. Anton and Joy did well on appetizers, but both teams struggled on fish; Jessica and Simone were kicked out after serving raw fish, and Chris and Mike were unable to work together. Chris served halibut with no crust and DeMarco, who returned mid-service, poorly sliced chicken. Ramsay threw the men out when Scott and Chris mixed up cooking times and the women after Bev served raw fish; this was the third service in a row where both teams lost, marking the worst service start in the show's history. For the first time in Hell's Kitchen history, Ramsay had the teams nominate three chefs for elimination.

Elimination: Simone, Rochelle, Sandra, Mike, DeMarco and Chris were nominated. Ramsay called Simone, Mike and DeMarco forward, had them remove their jackets and gave them ten seconds to plead their cases. But as Ramsay went to announce his decision, Simone immediately volunteered to leave the competition, marking the third voluntary exit at elimination (after Ji from Season 5 and Joseph from Season 6). Before sending the chefs back, Ramsay gave DeMarco and Mike back their jackets.

Ramsay's comment: "Hell's Kitchen is about making someone's wish come true. Simone wished to leave Hell's Kitchen. That was an easy one. Wish granted."
170 4 "17 Chefs Compete" April 3, 2014 (2014-04-03) 4.99[7]

Ramsay dumped about 200,000 pennies ($2,000) on the floor to give the contestants a lesson on consistency, representing how much money was wasted last service. He then taught them how to make ravioli.

Team challenge: The chefs made ravioli dishes in pairs; the first team to make ten approved dishes would win. The pairs for the red team are Melanie and Jessica, Kaisha and Sandra, Bev and Rochelle, and Beth and Joy. The pairs for the blue team are Jason and Scott, Ralph and Richard, Chris and Anton, and DeMarco Gabriel and Mike, since the blue has an extra member. The men raced to a 6–0 lead, but the women caught up, mainly thanks to Jessica and Melanie. With the teams at a 9–9 tie, DeMarco, Gabriel, and Mike, whom struggled, finally submitted a dish, but it was rejected, allowing the women to pass with their tenth dish and win their third challenge.

Reward/punishment: The women were rewarded with a day at a Beverly Hills mansion. The men prepped both kitchens in addition to wrapping pennies.

Service: Ramsay announced this service will host steak night. Beth, Rochelle, Gabriel and Scott served tableside salad and chopped ribs. Guests in attendance were Sharon Case, Suzanne Whang and Vanessa Marcil. In the red kitchen, Bev served salty risotto, but Joy and Melanie did well on appetizers and meat. In the blue kitchen, Ralph ignored Mike on the ravioli station, causing Ramsay to scold them both, Mike served risotto with no lobster and after Richard and Ralph served cold crab cakes and watery ravioli, Ramsay forced them to eat it. Anton did well on appetizers, but Chris undercooked fillets. After the women finished service, Ramsay had them help the men, where Jason was scolded for needlessly arguing with Sandra.

Elimination: Mike and DeMarco were nominated. Mike pleaded to be sent to the red team, but Ramsay eliminated him for his lack of passion, contribution, and for consistently being a poor performer

Ramsay's comment: "There once was a cook named Mike. He couldn't cook fish or any other dish, so I told him to take a hike."
171 5 "16 Chefs Compete" April 10, 2014 (2014-04-10) 4.17[8]

Team challenge: The chefs played a variant of Concentration where they had to match side dishes with four different types of protein (pork chop, swordfish, ahi tuna and chicken breast) in pairs. Melanie/Rochelle and Anton/Richard both scored on chicken breast, Chris and DeMarco scored over Jessica and Kashia on pork, Sandra and Beth scored over Jason and Gabriel on ahi tuna and Joy and Bev scored over Scott and Ralph on swordfish, giving the women their third straight challenge win.

Reward/punishment: The women spent a day at Laguna Beach. The men prepped honey taffy from scratch.Before prep, DeMarco told the blue team that his father walked out on him when he was 6 months old.

Service: A brunch service was set up as part of the first-ever Hell's Kitchen wedding, with the faster team winning service. The women served the bride's family, the men served the groom's family, and both did the wedding party's table. Rochelle and Scott got fruit salads out quickly, but Beth burst an egg and burnt bread, while Ralph cooked in a cold pan. Beth then served a raw egg, as did DeMarco after the egg was cooked by Ralph. Both teams got to the final ticket, but the women finished first due to Gabriel and Richard's slow performance on scrambled eggs, giving them the win and the men the worst start in Hell's Kitchen's history with five consecutive service losses.

Elimination: DeMarco and Gabriel were nominated; Ramsay also nominated Richard. Ramsay eliminated DeMarco for his lack of improvement, being nominated five consecutive times (the longest streak of nominations in the show's history, soon to be tied with season 14's Josh Trovato), and saying he ran out of chances.

Ramsay's comment: "DeMarco: demented, demoted, denied."
172 6 "15 Chefs Compete" April 17, 2014 (2014-04-17) 4.95[9]

Team captain nomination: No challenge took place; Ramsay asked both teams to choose a Team Captain for dinner service. Melanie and Anton were chosen. Melanie stated she would lead from the fish station, while Anton stated he would 'float' around stations to lead.

Service: Ramsay put the team captains to the test when he announced the VIP guests for the chef's table with the red team cooking for Elizabeth Perkins and the blue team cooking for Holly Marie Combs. Joy argued with Sandra for not communicating and Beth struggled. Melanie, whose leadership was largely ineffectual, ruined an otherwise complete order with raw fish. Anton's leadership, meanwhile, was fairly overzealous though seemingly more effective. Jason performed well on meat. Chris struggled on scallops, including one Anton served for the chef's table, but recovered. Scott had communication issues despite cooking fish perfectly. Both teams completed service; Ramsay gave the men their first service win and praised Anton's leadership.

Elimination: Beth and Sandra were nominated. Ramsay polled them, and though all except Jessica said Sandra should go home, Ramsay eliminated Beth for her lack of leadership and confidence, being out of her depth, and for consistently poor performances.

Ramsay's comment: "Beth thinks the reason she hasn't advanced in the culinary industry is the fact that she's a woman in the south. I think it's because she can't cook."
173 7 "14 Chefs Compete" April 24, 2014 (2014-04-24) 4.92[10]

Team challenge: The teams had to cook four gourmet pizzas to be rated from 1–10 by Ramsay and Wolfgang Puck. Each team had three pairs and a solo chef and told not to serve their weakest pizzas; the men did not serve Jason and Chris' pizza, while the women decided Bev and Kashia's was weakest, despite their protests. Rochelle scored 5, while Ralph scored 3. Joy and Jessica scored 4, while Gabriel and Scott scored 5. Lastly, Melanie and Sandra scored 3, but Anton and Richard scored 7, giving the men a 15–12 win; Bev and Kashia's pizza would have also scored 7.

Reward/punishment: The men were rewarded with a day at a rooftop swimming pool and a session with a yoga instructor. The women made pasta for Italian family night in addition to prepping both kitchens.

Service: Both teams struggled on pizzas during family night. Bev undercooked and burned the pizzas and Sandra rolled the bases too thick. Rochelle also served scallops with no color but thanks to Joy, the women completed service, serving the order for Ramsay's family. In the blue kitchen, Chris struggled on pizzas and Scott made the situation worse, even with more help from Gabriel, they only served ten pizzas before running out. Anton accidentally spilled oil on the fish station, causing a fire, and Ralph undercooked and poorly cut meat. Thanks to Jason, the men finished service. Ramsay named the women winners for having a more consistent service.

Elimination: Chris and Scott were nominated; Ramsay also nominated Ralph. Ramsay eliminated Chris for consistently wasting pizza dough and mediocre performances.

Ramsay's comment: "I'd like to think every chef has a talent. Chris needs to keep looking for his."
174 8 "13 Chefs Compete" May 1, 2014 (2014-05-01) 4.47[11]

Team challenge: The teams had to cook sampler dishes for attendees of a dinner honoring the 160th anniversary of the Phi Mu sorority. Each team had to serve a chicken, seafood and beef entree. The women did well under Kashia's leadership, while the men wasted over ten minutes deliberating, barely finishing on time. The men scored on chicken, but the women won 2-1 by scoring on seafood and beef.

Reward/punishment: The women were rewarded with a shopping spree and a meal with Hell's Kitchen Season 10 winner Christina Wilson in Las Vegas. The men prepped the dining room under the sorority's party committee's direction.

Service: Gabriel and Richard put in strong performances on appetizers and garnish despite having communication issues with Scott despite him cooking meat perfectly. Jason served raw chicken twice, requiring Anton and Gabriel to help him. In the red kitchen, Bev undercooked crab cakes and Kashia and Jessica struggled on fried chicken, serving it raw and arguing over who was at fault. They eventually served it, but Bev struggled on garnish, causing Rochelle to take over. Both teams finished service; Ramsay named the men winners for having a more consistent service.

Elimination: Bev and Jessica were nominated. Ramsay eliminated Bev for letting Rochelle take over her station and for consistently poor performances.

Ramsay's comment: "Bev may be a great food truck chef. Unfortunately for her, Hell's Kitchen doesn't have wheels."
175 9 "12 Chefs Compete" May 8, 2014 (2014-05-08) 4.30[12]

Team challenge: Ramsay tested the chefs' adaptability, placing six ingredients under four domes. Every few minutes, a new dome became available, but sharing ingredients was banned; they had 30 minutes to make their dishes, judged by chef Michael Cimarusti. Kashia scored over Ralph on New York strip, Rochelle scored over Richard on lobster, Jason scored over Joy on sea bass, both Gabriel and Melanie scored on chicken and Anton scored over Jessica on ahi tuna. Sandra then scored over Scott on duck breast, giving the women a 4–3 win and their sixth challenge victory out of eight.

Reward/punishment: The women were rewarded with lunch at the beach and a private volleyball lesson with Olympian Kerri Walsh Jennings. The men had to do the waitstaff's chores.

Cook for your life – part 1: Instead of a service, Ramsay called each chef into his office one by one, evaluating their progress and asking them who they felt was the weakest chef in their team. Jessica and Richard received the most votes and were challenged with having 30 minutes apiece to cook three dishes, consisting of risotto, scallops, and halibut, judged by Ramsay. The loser was eliminated, resulting in the first elimination challenge in Hell's Kitchen.

The episode ended in a cliffhanger, as Ramsay was about to announce his decision.
176 10 "11 Chefs Compete" May 15, 2014 (2014-05-15) 4.86[13]

Cook for your life – part 2: Ramsay eliminated a tearful Jessica for undercooking lobster in the risotto and overcooking halibut. Jessica did not receive a comment or a coat-hanging and picture-burning sequence, but her hung jacket and burned picture was seen next to Ralph's.

Reward/punishment: The next morning, Ramsay brought the chefs to his GastroPub to give them inspiration before he announced that next service would have a special menu based on it. Later, Ralph began to feel sick, caused by bad sleep, but returned before service.

Service: The men did well on appetizers under Jason's leadership, while the women did fairly well, though Kashia cooked less than needed at first. On entrees, the women had a near flawless performance thanks to Joy on meat and Kashia on garnish. The men suffered a communication breakdown; Gabriel gave Ramsay inaccurate times on meat, Scott served soggy salad and fries, Ralph overcooked and undercooked fish and Anton failed to communicate with the meat station. The women finished service and all but Sandra, on desserts, were ordered to help the men. When Ralph served a mushy fish, Ramsay kicked the men out.

Elimination: Scott and Gabriel were nominated; Ramsay also nominated Ralph when Gabriel tried to nominate Ralph instead of himself. Ramsay eliminated Ralph for his issues on fish and chips and refusal to take responsibility for his mistakes.

Ramsay's comment: "Ralph has a lot of heart. But when it comes to cooking, he comes up a little short."
177 11 "10 Chefs Compete" May 22, 2014 (2014-05-22) 4.34[14]

Team challenge: The chefs had to match eight cuts of pork with eight body parts of a pig; the men won, so each member was allowed to choose which cut of pork they wanted to cook with and which member of the red team they wished to compete against. Melanie scored over Anton on the shoulder, Rochelle scored over Richard on loin, Gabriel scored over Joy on ribs and Jason scored over Sandra on the belly. Lastly, Scott surprised Ramsay by presenting a completed ravioli dish and scored over Kashia on pork cheek, giving the men a 3–2 win and their third challenge win.

Reward/punishment: The men went skydiving in a vertical wind tunnel and were received their own Vitamix blender. The women, in addition to prepping both kitchens, made peanut butter by cracking a lot of peanuts.

Service: Appetizers ran okay, but Anton cooked nine scallops instead of ten, Sandra overcooked lobster, Kashia forgot to turn the gas on when cooking risotto and Gabriel served raw mushrooms. Anton overcooked halibut, and Ramsay brought the men to the storeroom when Anton blamed Scott, before Anton overcooked salmon, causing Ramsay to jump in. Both teams finished service, but Ramsay named no winner.

Team change: Anton, Scott, Sandra and Rochelle were nominated. Ramsay had all four remove their jackets but moved Anton and Scott to the women's team and Sandra and Rochelle to the men's team, hoping to "correct" things.
178 12 "10 Chefs Again" May 29, 2014 (2014-05-29) 4.54[15]

Team challenge: Ramsay had each chef, one by one, enter a "grocery store" in darkness, where they had to use the sense of feel to collect five ingredients. He then gave them 30 minutes to use the ingredients, judging the winning team through a King of the Hill match between all chefs individually. Gabriel was not allowed to sit on the hill after forgetting his chicken mousse. Scott, Sandra, and Anton sat on the hill, but Rochelle surpassed them, and she went on to win the challenge for the blue team.

Reward/punishment: The blue team spent a day at LeSpa in Beverly Hills while the red team had to take in deliveries from a truck.

Service: 24 UNICEF charity members were guests for service including ambassador Angie Harmon, who served as the host for this special event. Each chef was in charge of a course, cooking twelve portions. Anton and Rochelle got risottos out, but Gabriel forgot to cook two tuna, slowing down the blue team until Rochelle helped him. Kashia struggled leading the tortellini course and Richard overcooked his, causing blue diners to receive reduced portions, a mistake made worse when Gabriel put out thirteen plates instead of twelve. Scott got lamb out fine despite poor presentation, but Sandra undercooked and then overcooked lamb. Lastly, Joy and Jason both got beignet courses out fine. Ramsay named both teams losers.

Elimination: Kashia, Scott, Sandra and Gabriel were nominated. Ramsay eliminated Sandra for her issues on lamb and not improving after her move to the blue team.

Ramsay's comment: "It may have been charity night in Hell's Kitchen, but when it comes to Sandra, I wasn't in a charitable mood."
179 13 "9 Chefs Compete" June 5, 2014 (2014-06-05) 4.78[16]

Pre-service: There was no team challenge; the chefs were woken up by two rappers, who sang instructions for the teams to create their own menus. Melanie forced through most of her ideas for the red team, though Anton and Joy were able to get dishes on as well. Most of the blue team except Rochelle contributed ideas for their menu. Ramsay felt both menus were decent, but insisted on tweaks, calling out Rochelle when she burnt a sampler crab cake and giggled nervously.

Service: Rochelle was initially nervous but got appetizers out, though Gabriel repeatedly undercooked steaks. Richard served raw crab cakes and under-portioned the sides, causing Rochelle to take over. On the red team, Melanie had major troubles on their scallop dish and ran out mid-service, but Anton used the blue team's supply of scallops, as they did not need them, to help her. Despite the team's worries about the fried chicken dish, Joy got every order out perfectly, while Kashia delivered every order of her signature dish perfectly. Ramsay named the red team winners for a strong finish.

Team change: Ramsay then asked the red team for one volunteer to go to the blue team after the elimination aside from Anton or Scott, which was Melanie.

Elimination: Richard and Gabriel were nominated. Ramsay eliminated Richard for failing to live up to his experience, lacking Gabriel's determination and being kicked off his station by Rochelle.

Ramsay's comment: "Richard had more experience than anyone here. But it's not experience I'm looking for, it's talent."
180 14 "8 Chefs Compete" June 12, 2014 (2014-06-12) 4.88[17]

Team challenge: The annual "blind taste test" took place; Rochelle identified three ingredients compared to Joy's two, Anton and Gabriel both scored one and Scott scored two while Jason failed to get any. Lastly, Melanie also scored zero, while Kashia scored one, giving the red team a 6–4 win.

Reward/punishment: The red team were rewarded with a private ice skating lesson with Olympian Rachael Flatt, while the blue team had to take in deliveries of ice and make ice cream for service. Concerned over Gabriel's lack of fightback, Ramsay gave him a pep talk in the storeroom before service.

Service: Ryan Pickett and Dante Basco were in attendance for this service. The blue team had a near perfect service thanks to Melanie on appetizers and Gabriel on garnish. Jason and Rochelle fell behind on orders, but both rebounded as Gabriel quickly reorganized the team. In the red kitchen, Scott got off to a good start on appetizers, but Kashia forgot to cook one scallop, and when Scott jumped in, he restarted the whole order. Kashia was caught braising a salmon in sauce and argued with Ramsay. Anton made raw chicken, but when Scott served it, he was accused of cooking it. Anton also burnt wellingtons and argued with Chef Andi, causing Ramsay to send him to the storeroom. Ramsay praised the blue team, particularly Gabriel, for their excellent service, but berated the red team.

Elimination: Anton and Scott were nominated. Ramsay eliminated Anton for his arrogance and disintegrating performances.

Ramsay's comment: "Anton let the little success he had in Hell's Kitchen inflate his ego. It was time to let the air out of that balloon."
181 15 "7 Chefs Compete" June 19, 2014 (2014-06-19) 5.13[18]

Team challenge: The chefs were taken to Bristol Farms Supermarket and given $35 and 15 minutes to shop for ingredients and cook three dishes. Since the blue team had an extra member, Rochelle and Gabriel worked as a pair. The guest judges were editor of LAist Krista Simmons, Master Yelper Anita Lau and IDG Director of Development Brent Berkowitz. Each judge gave a price they would pay for the dish and the three prices were averaged to give a score. Kashia's Top Sirloin with bourbon sauce scored $24.67, while Jason's cornish hen scored $20. Rochelle and Gabriel's trout dish scored $21.33, while Scott's pan-roasted sea bass and jumbo shrimp scored $23.67. Joy's seared pork loin rubbed with sage, salt, black pepper, and spiced applesauce scored $24.67, while Melanie's lamb chops with fresh rosemary, garlic, and lemon sage cous cous scored $28. The blue team's total was $69.33, but the red team won the challenge with their total of $73.01.

Reward/punishment: The red team were given $1000 for a shopping spree at Grove SS and had lunch at the Hatfield restaurant in Los Angeles. The blue team cleaned the dorms and bathrooms.

Challenge – Part I: At a press conference, Ramsay revealed the season's first individual challenge, in which each chef would be competing to earn a black jacket, immunity from elimination in the next dinner service and their dish a place on the December page of the calendar. Each chef was given 45 minutes to create a dish of their choice. Ramsay then revealed three guest judges alongside him to judge the dishes, season 3 winner Rock Harper, season 9 winner Paul Niedermann, which Jason meets for the first time since he withdrawn due to illness, and season 10 second runner-up Dana Cohen; each judge rated the dish from 1–5.

Jason's stuffed halibut with capellini, goat cheese, crab and shrimp scored 8, Kashia's rack of lamb covered with honey pistachio and demi-glace scored 11, Rochelle's seared New York Strip steak with cilantro-lime chimichurri sauce scored 13, Scott's pan-seared sea scallops and poached crab with tarragon butter scored 11, Melanie's marinated rack of lamb with red wine rosemary garlic and creamy basil-infused mashed potatoes scored 5 and Gabriel's roasted rack of lamb did not score a single point. Last up was Joy, with a seared duck breast with open-roasted figs, mushrooms, and Swiss Chard.

Before marks were given and clarification on whether Joy or Rochelle won immunity, the episode ended in a cliffhanger.
182 16 "7 Chefs Again" June 26, 2014 (2014-06-26) 4.95[19]

Challenge – Part II: Continued from the previous episode, Joy's dish impressed all four judges, earning her an almost perfect score of 19 points.

Reward/punishment: Joy earned a black jacket and therefore immunity from elimination after service, a December spot on the HK calendar, and was also treated to lunch with Rock, Paul, and Dana in the Hell's Kitchen dining room. The others prepared the food and serve it to them.

Service: Before service, Ramsay revealed that every chef surviving elimination after service would be rewarded with a black jacket. Dinner service featured a special VIP table for members of Oxfam, an anti-poverty charity, including ambassador and actress Minnie Driver, and founder Raymond Offenheiser. Both teams had to serve them at the same time, but Gabriel served scallops too early and miscounted them before overcooking them, though he recovered quickly. Scott argued with Ramsay on fish, Kashia served perfectly cooked but poorly cut chicken, Melanie undercooked chicken. Gabriel was caught was caught cooking halibut and salmon in the same pan before serving dry salmon.

Automatic elimination: After Scott and Gabriel both burnt salmon, Ramsay pulled them into the storage room. When they returned, they completed the VIP table. However, after serving raw salmon, Ramsay eliminated Gabriel, making him the sixth contestant in Hell's Kitchen history to be eliminated during service, and the first since Nilka in season 7. Instead of sending Gabriel upstairs like the rest, Ramsay sends him through the front entrance, shocking the blue team and the customers. Outside, Jean-Phillipe consoled him before taking his jacket and shaking his hand goodbye. Gabriel was not given the coat hook or flaming picture scene. The teams were named joint-losers. Ramsay had both teams nominate one chef for elimination.

Elimination: Jason and Scott were nominated but Ramsay also nominated Melanie. However, he instead gave her the second black jacket followed by Kashia, Rochelle, Jason and Scott.

Ramsay's comment: "With Gabriel causing such a disaster in the kitchen tonight, it was hard to tell who else I should send home. So, I gave everybody the thrill of getting a black jacket. But somebody will definitely be going home after the next dinner service."
183 17 "6 Chefs Compete" July 3, 2014 (2014-07-03) 4.30[20]

Challenge: The chefs traveled to the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum, where they cooked gourmet tailgate party food favorites for USC Trojans football fans; the dish voted best by a group of 50 fans won. The challenge ended in a tie between Scott and Jason.

Reward/punishment: Scott and Jason were treated to a trip to the Saddle Peak Lodge in Malibu while the others were forced to sort garbage from the tailgate party and in Hell's Kitchen. Jason got drunk during the reward, and in addition to arriving late to prep, was very sluggish in helping out.

Service: Appetizers ran okay, but Scott overcooked risotto on the final table and argued with Ramsay, who accused him of trying to cover up his mistakes. Kashia cooked one lobster tail instead of two and accused Melanie of not helping her, even though she earlier refused Melanie's help. Rochelle had trouble slicing chicken, forcing Ramsay to help her, and Kashia served raw salmon, screaming at Jason and Rochelle when they asked her for times on the refire, which Ramsay rebuked her for. Kashia then failed to get it out, so Ramsay put Scott on the station with her, but he made the situation worse and argued with Ramsay again; the team finished service, but Ramsay had the chefs nominate one chef for elimination.

Elimination: Kashia was nominated; Ramsay also nominated Scott since he found his arguing "unacceptable".[note 1] Ramsay eliminated Kashia for her volatile attitude during service and poor performance on fish, but praised her for her effort.

Ramsay's comment: "Kashia is a great line cook with an incredible attitude. Unfortunately for her, she's just not ready to run her own brigade yet."
184 18 "5 Chefs Compete" July 10, 2014 (2014-07-10) 4.79[21]

Challenge: The chefs were treated to a musical number by a rock band, who used discarded everyday objects as their musical instruments. The chefs were then given 30 minutes to make a dish using leftovers from the Hell's Kitchen fridge, which would be judged on taste and presentation by Ramsay and magazine food editor Laurie Buckle. While Jason, Joy, and Rochelle received poor reviews, Scott won, narrowly beating out Melanie.

Reward/punishment: Scott was rewarded with a photo-shoot for Better Homes and Gardens magazine, where his dish was featured. He and Jason also got to fly fighter planes. While the others are busy cutting pumpkins, Rochelle cut her thumb and was sent to the hospital but returned in time for dinner service.

Service: Comic book legend Stan Lee was a guest at the chef's table. The Red Hat Society along with Bree Williamson and Keran Giovanni were also guests for this service. Scott had a strong performance on appetizers despite being forced to clean burning rice on the stove, while Melanie failed twice to cook an acceptable capellini for the chef's table, but recovered. Rochelle, on meat, lead entrees and constantly called out times, but Joy, despite acknowledging Rochelle's times, served fish too early, angering Ramsay.

Joy's exit: This happened again at the next table with Jason on garnish and Joy argued with Ramsay before leaving the kitchen saying I'm done" and angrily throwing off her jacket despite pleas from her teammates not to leave. Ramsay followed Joy and called her out on her selfish behavior, but Joy argued back once more saying she was done with Ramsay snapping "I know you're done, it shows in your cooking" and she went upstairs to the dorm. The remaining chefs persevered and finished service, while Joy packed her bags in the dorm; Chef Andi attempted to motivate Joy, and while Joy regretted her decision to walk out, she withdrew from the competition, making her the 3rd chef to walk out of the competition since Season 7's Andrew's withdrawal from the competition, believing it was too late. Joy received a burning picture scene, but it is unknown whether her jacket was hung even though she threw it off.

Elimination: Ramsay didn't say much about Joy after her departure, although he did state her decision to leave proved to him that she isn't ready to be a head chef, and that he expects everyone else to have a better attitude at this stage of the competition. He also added that to be a great head chef, one needs to have composure, discipline, and maturity, and that Joy lacked all of those things in her decision to leave. Ramsay then told the remaining chefs that despite the ups and downs, they all fought back, and that no one else would be leaving. However, he announced that after the next service, two contestants would be eliminated, with the other two advancing as finalists.

Ramsay's comment: "Joy's quitting was one of the most shocking things I've ever experienced in Hell's Kitchen. But her lack of maturity tonight proved that she is not ready to be a head chef because leaders never quit."
185 19 "4 Chefs Compete" July 17, 2014 (2014-07-17) 4.95[22]

The chefs were summoned downstairs for a security check before meeting Ramsay and security guards outside. VIP guests then arrived; the chefs' loved ones (Rochelle's fiance and parents, Melanie's boyfriend and mother, Jason's girlfriend and mother and Scott's wife, son, and daughter). They all enjoyed a dish that Ramsay prepared for them in the dining room.

Challenge: This led to the popular 40 minute "Taste it, now make it" challenge. Ramsay allowed the chefs to use a sample plate as a reference since most of them had eaten very little of the dish. For the protein, Jason, Melanie, and Rochelle chose sole, while Scott used escolar. For the garnish, Jason, Rochelle, and Scott chose butternut squash, while Melanie chose pumpkin. For the puree, Jason and Scott chose watercress, Melanie chose arugula and Rochelle chose parsley. Ramsay revealed the protein was sole, eliminating Scott, and the garnish was butternut squash, eliminating Melanie. Jason then beat out Rochelle as he correctly used watercress for his puree.

Reward/punishment: Jason went to two Los Angeles the Fig & Olive with Sous Chef Andi and Ink with his girlfriend and mother. He also won a set of stainless steel cookware. The others had to move furniture not being used out of the dorms and prep the kitchen for dinner service. Rochelle sat out due to her cut thumb and Melanie intentionally sat out as well, hoping Scott would tire himself out and sabotage his chances of getting to the final.

Service: Each chef took a turn running the pass, while also having to spot acts of sabotage Ramsay and sous chef James set up. Rochelle was nervous in leadership as she read out tickets too fast and kept giggling, but after a pep talk by Ramsay, she recovered, rejecting poorly presented salads by Scott and catching shrimp in a risotto instead of lobster. Melanie also spoke very quickly and had a hard time maintaining attention, and was also urged to take control. She improved, but failed to realize that Jean-Philippe had given her a ticket featuring a "chef's special", despite none being on the menu. Scott held everyone to a high standard and was quick to point out even tiny flaws, which annoyed the other chefs, but he led very effectively and caught a duck breast and a raw chicken breast instead of two chicken breasts. Jason was laid-back at first, but then generally led well, catching a salmon instead of halibut.

Elimination: Ramsay firstly eliminated Rochelle, but praised her for her energy, saying she would have a bright future ahead of her. He then named Scott and Jason to advance to the final, eliminating Melanie.[note 2] Ramsay complimented Melanie on her performance, allowing her to keep her jacket. Neither Melanie or Rochelle received a coat hook or flaming picture scene.
186 20 "Winner Chosen" July 24, 2014 (2014-07-24) 5.17[23]

Challenge: Ramsay invited Scott and Jason to a Los Angeles night club, where they competed in their final challenge. Both prepared two appetizers and three entrees in one hour to be judged by five well-renowned chefs from 1–10. Scott won 43–42.

Reward: Scott was given the first pick in drafting a team using the ten chefs eliminated from the competition prior to the final.[note 3] Scott picked Chris, Ralph, Rochelle, Kashia, and Jessica, while Jason picked Anton, Melanie, Gabriel and Bev, and was left with Sandra.

Dinner service: The finalists' families along with Sean Kanan and Shanola Hampton were guests for the final service in addition to guests sitting at the chef's tables which includes singer Natasha Bedingfield in Scott's kitchen and actor Mark Boone Junior in Jason's kitchen. In the red kitchen, despite strong performances from Anton, Melanie, Gabriel and Bev, Sandra failed to provide times on garnish and old crab cakes for the chef's table, argued with Jason, and worked slowly. Gabriel overcooked fillets, but recovered. In the blue kitchen, Jessica struggled on garnish and Scott kicked her out after she served poor french fries, marking the second time a finalist threw a chef out of the kitchen, but Kashia, Ralph, Chris, and Rochelle put in strong performances. Ramsay praised Jason and Scott and announced the results were very close.

Winner: After deliberating, Ramsay called Scott and Jason to his office and gave them final praise before sending them to two doors; Scott's door opened, making him the twelfth winner of Hell's Kitchen. Though he left for medical reasons in season 9's 1st episode and actually made it this far in this season, Jason took his defeat graciously and felt Scott deserved to win. Scott gave a victory speech and thanked people for supporting him.[note 4]

Ramsay's comment: "Scott won tonight because he has all the qualities I'm looking for in a head chef. He is passionate, determined and a true leader. He's an artist plating food and has a phenomenal palate. There's no doubt in my mind that he's got a great career ahead of him."


Scott appears in the first episode of Hell's Kitchen Season 15 at the parade in Las Vegas along with Season 10 Hell's Kitchen Winner, Christina Wilson. Scott also appears in the Season 16 premiere alongside Season 4 winner, Christina Machamer. They joined the red team for their challenge win dinner.


  1. ^ Scott's nomination ties him with Autumn Lewis from season 7, Sabrina Brimhall from season 8, Elise Wims from season 9 and Clemenza Caserta from season 10 as the most nominated contestant in the history of the show, at seven nominations.
  2. ^ This marked the fourth all-male final in the show's history and the first time that a chef who competed in two seasons, Jason, advanced to the final.
  3. ^ Joy and Richard did not return, so Bev and Chris took their places as the last two contestants eliminated prior to the top twelve.
  4. ^ At age 36, Scott is to date the oldest winner of Hell's Kitchen.


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