Ludo Lefebvre and Sarah Schiear
The competition started with one tasting spoon, and ultimately there can be only one winner.
On the season finale of ABC's The Taste (Tuesday at 9/8c), special guest chef/restauranteur Jose Andres will drop by to help determine the series' first-ever champ. Nigella Lawson is the odd lady out since none of her team members advanced to the finals, which means the remaining judges' contestants will go head-to-head to win a grand prize of $100,000, a new car and a nifty Taste trophy.
Who will win? Chef Ludo Lefebvre talked to TVGuide.com to size up the Final 4:
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Profession: Food blogger
Record: 1 team win: "Seduction"; 1 high individual score: "Comfort Food"; 1 low individual score: "Daring Pairings"
Chef Ludo says: "She has come far, and I am really impressed that she was able to make it to the finals going up against so many professional cooks. Home cooks are extremely talented, but they don't have to deal with the day in and day out pressure of insane restaurant/catering timing. That alone is a huge skill to learn and manage. The clock is never your friend. Sarah never was stressed out, and I think that really helped her get to the finals. Plus, she had me for a mentor! She was very open to learning; there was no ego to manage. She could surprise us all."
Profession: Culinary instructor
Record: 3 team wins: "Daring Pairings," "Art of the Sandwich," and "Nose to Tail"; 2 low individual scores: "Art of the Sandwich," "Nose to Tail"
Chef Ludo says: "He has worked in some great professional kitchens where he obviously learned some great skills. The difference between Gregg and Sarah is that it was a struggle to get Gregg to listen to me in the kitchen. He definitely feels like he has something to prove, but I think if he puts aside the ego a little bit and listens to my advice, he can definitely win this. He has the skills. He just needs to think simply."
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Profession: Private chef
Record: 4 high individual scores: "Comfort Foods," "Daring Pairings," "Nose to Tail," "Seduction"
Chef Ludo says: "Three gold stars — I think that says a lot. She has such a wide variety of experience and clients that are looking for diverse range of cuisine styles, that she is definitely a threat. She put up dish after dish that received gold stars throughout the competition. She also seems to bring in so many flavors and techniques from her childhood, which as an added benefit for her have become "trendy" in today's world. Definitely a threat, but she has a huge downside: Malarkey is her mentor!"
Profession: Chef consultant
Record: 1 high individual score: "Comfort Food"; 2 low individual scores: "Art of Sandwich," "Seduction"
Chef Ludo says: "She can definitely cook. There is no doubt about it. I think her biggest weakness is that she seems to have something to prove and at times seems as though she did not listen to Tony in the kitchen. She never believed that anyone else's dish could be better than hers, and having that kind of ego rather than being open to learning in the kitchen might be her downfall. But she has the experience of a professional cook and dealing with time pressures, so she is absolutely in the running."
"It will be so close," Lefebvre concludes. "Each of the contestants are so strong, but I like the odds of Team Ludo."
The Taste finale airs Tuesday at 9/8c on ABC.