WINNER!: Einat Admony
Chef/Owner - Taim
New York, N.Y. West Village
I'm a chef and owner of Taim. I grew up in Israel and always helped prepare a crazy five course meal for my family's Friday night dinners. After I left the military, I traveled around Europe and Thailand for five years and then went back to Israel to attend culinary school. I cook Middle Eastern food with a twist. I'm a very intense person, so cooking calms me down. I'm never too tired to cook. If I come home at 2am from work and my husband is hungry, I'll go and cook him a meal. I'm aggressive and pushy and faster than the guys. I would never serve anyone something that's less than perfect. Being in the military helps you be prepared for the unknown. I'm going to win because people flip when I serve my food. It's very unique and they say they've never seen anything like it before. If I lose this competition, I will pretend that it doesn't bother me even though I'll be dying inside.
Chef, Registered Dietician & Culinary Consultant
New York, N.Y.
I'm the Richard Simmons meets Julia Child of food and nutrition. I realized at an early age that what you put in your body affects how you feel. I'm a chef and registered dietician who has cooked for Broadway stars and volunteered my time with various non-profits. I'm now a director at Nutrition Culinary Consultants where we help clients do everything from conceptualize healthy products, research and test recipes and develop marketing campaigns to promote healthy options. I love to cook classic French dishes like Coq Au Vin and Beef Bourguinon but feel that all food can and should be healthy. I challenge myself to come up with creative dinners using whatever happens to be leftover in my pantry. I'm pretty competitive, but I try to hide my competitive nature to throw off my opponents.
Executive Chef – Knickerbocker Bar & Grill
New York, N.Y.
I'm 32-years-old and I'm the executive chef at Knickerbocker Bar & Grill in New York City where I was born and raised. My earliest experience in restaurants was bussing tables at age 14 in Manhattan. I loved the business but didn't realize that I had a passion for food until I was getting a degree in engineering. I quickly decided that a stifling 9-5 job with no creative outlet was not for me. So I enrolled at the New York Restaurant School. I've had the opportunity work with Jean George in many capacities and I received amazing training. I believe that food should be true to the ingredients and I adhere to a three ingredient per plate philosophy. I try to incorporate ingredients from my Colombian heritage wherever possible because I know people are excited to try new things. I run a militant kitchen where it's all volunteers, no hostages. If you don't want to be there, don't be there. I think I can be put in any situation and be able to cook myself out of it. I'm a quick thinker, fast on my feet and I have great ideas in my head. My food stands for itself.
Executive Chef – Ayza Wine Bar
New York, N.Y.
I am self-taught – no school. I have worked for a lot of great chefs. You gotta get dirty before you can say that you are a chef. I just opened a new restaurant and I have my hands full. When I am in my kitchen I am in my own world — I don't let things or people bother me. I run it like I am an army drill sergeant. Pressure is what you make of it. Once, I accidentally cut my hand with a big knife — I sliced all the way to the bone. I had the guys bring me a beer and some asprin for the pain and I cooked through with one hand — got us through the rush. I don't care if Mario Batali is there — I just do my best.