“Top Chef: All-Stars” chefs Richard Blais and Mike Isabella battled to be king of the kitchen on Wednesday’s season finale – so, who took home the coveted title and who had to pack their knives and go?
After what may go down as the best season of the popular Bravo reality series, Richard and Mike squared off in a head-to-head restaurant showdown during the finale, where they served up a four-course tasting menu that included delicacies like foie gras ice cream and a pepperoni sauce that left judges Padma Lakshmi, Tom Colicchio, Gail Simmons and guest judge Hubert Keller almost licking their plates.
Before the winner was announced, Richard – known for doubting his abilities throughout the season – said, “Mike’s strengths are confidence and swagger… But his weakness is the same thing – his confidence, swagger and bravado.”
Richard was ultimately awarded the title of “Top Chef,” but his competitor still maintained that his meal was the best.
“It hurts, 32 challenges, to come in second. It’s tough,” Mike said. “I feel like I beat him. I just didn’t get the prize.”
Even after winning, Richard remained shocked by his new title.
“I didn’t think I could do it,” the chef said. “You just don’t know. I don’t want to be cliche, but where there’s a will, there’s a way. I willed this.”
In addition to bragging rights, Richard – who owns Atlanta’s Flip Burger Boutique – took home $200,000, plus a showcase at the Aspen Food & Wine Classic and a spread in Food & Wine magazine.