Guy's Superstar Grocery Games — Highlights from the Tournament

Browse top moments from the five-part showdown and find out which chefs made it to the next round — and who checked out.

Photo By: David Moir ©2016, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Photo By: David Moir ©2016, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Photo By: David Moir ©2016, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Photo By: David Moir ©2016, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Photo By: David Moir ©2016, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Photo By: David Moir ©2016, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Photo By: David Moir ©2016, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Photo By: David Moir ©2016, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Photo By: David Moir ©2016, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Photo By: David Moir ©2016, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Photo By: David Moir ©2016, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Photo By: David Moir ©2016, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Photo By: David Moir ©2016, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Photo By: David Moir ©2016, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Photo By: David Moir ©2016, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Photo By: David Moir ©2016, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Photo By: David Moir ©2016, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Photo By: David Moir ©2016, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Photo By: David Moir ©2016, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Photo By: David Moir ©2016, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Photo By: David Moir ©2016, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Photo By: David Moir ©2016, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Photo By: David Moir ©2016, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Photo By: David Moir ©2016, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Photo By: David Moir ©2016, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Photo By: David Moir ©2016, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Photo By: David Moir ©2016, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Photo By: David Moir ©2016, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Photo By: David Moir ©2016, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Photo By: David Moir ©2016, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Photo By: David Moir ©2016, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Photo By: David Moir ©2016, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Photo By: David Moir ©2016, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Photo By: David Moir ©2016, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Photo By: David Moir ©2016, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Photo By: David Moir ©2016, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Finale: International Traffic Jam

"Do we get to choose where we fuse?" Richard asks after Guy has Alex spin the Wheel of Games and it lands on World Fusion for Game 1. "No, because he's a sick, sick man," Eric replies. The final four chefs must fuse Japan and Mexico into a hearty breakfast. After Guy says "go," the chefs get into a bit of a jam. "He's taking up a lot of room," Marc says of Richard, who's trying to squeeze by and grab every condiment known to man. "He gets such pleasure out of this," Marc adds.

At Odds in a Competition with Herself

"Alex has won so many competitions, this show is all chefs versus Alex," states Carl as he watches the very confused Iron Chef. But never having cooked Japanese food, Alex doesn't feel that way. "I'm not going to be dysfunctionally myself today," she says, talking to herself, trying to work out a recipe idea step by step. When Guy stops by, she tells him about her concept. "Huevos rancheros tostada with miso-yuzu vinaigrette with bonito flakes — weird?" she asks him. "No, I love it," he reassures her.

Bringing Some Levity to the Table

"If you don't do something tableside, I walk," says Guy when he asks Richard to present. But for his breakfast ramen, Richard doesn't; Marc does instead. "I figured I'd come up and help you out," he says, cutting his Japanese breakfast burritos in half for the judges. "You really gave us the Japanese flavors," says Aarti, but she adds that "the only Mexican element here is the tortilla." Marc checks out but leaves with $1,000 for his charity, Share Our Strength.

Out of sight, Out of Their Control

"Did somebody just say, like, 'Yeah'?" Alex asks, after Eric spins the Wheel of Games for Game 2 and lands on Out of Sight. "You better stay out of this," she yells at the offender, Troy. "I've felt this before," says a blindfolded Richard, picking up a box he thinks is stock. "I have to make a high-end lunch with almond chocolate milk," he exclaims when he sees what it is. Alex gets bacon crumbs, and Eric ends up with canned dehydrated hash-brown potatoes.

Wizard at Work

Instead of making shrimp and grits, Richard decides to create "shrimp in grits," and for that he pulls out the liquid nitrogen. "I'm going to nitro-mill shrimp, lime leaf and lemongrass," he explains, pouring the frozen ingredients into a blender to turn them into dust. "I've never seen that in my life," Guy says, watching as the blender releases a plume of frosty mist. "Whatever it takes to win," Richard chants twice. Troy calls the dish "phenomenal."

Ingredient Trickster

"Can I have some more Bac-Os?" Alex asks, then adds, "I don't have enough — said no one ever." Disappointed she has to work with the ingredient, she somehow hatches a plan for pork chops with shrimp, sunchokes and ramps. "When you start to get close to winning, then you start to realize what it's going to feel like if you lose," she says, determined. Her trick of balancing out the faux bacon with real bacon works. "You're so smart," Aarti compliments her. "You're kind of tricking my palate."

Plating Predicament

"These black plates just kind of beckoned to me," says Eric, but as he's plating he realizes his bone marrow bordelaise sauce is running right off the rimless dishes. "You sure that's the right plate, buddy?" Guy asks. "With 30 seconds left, am I going to stop?" Eric retorts, rushing to finish. "You've made the worst plating decision I have ever seen," Troy tells him. Despite having a great steak and potatoes, Eric checks out, although with $1,000 in hand for the Zimmer Children's Museum.

Maneuvering the Game Mindfully

"This game quickly went from checkers to chess," says Carl, remarking how slow the final two chefs are moving through the aisles after Guy spins 1 Ingredient Per Aisle for Game 3. "When you get kind of anxious, you don't see anything," says Alex, who's perusing steadily and selecting carefully. Alex eventually decides on a dish of sole and fennel, which she plans to feature in multiple ways.

Finishing in a "Blais of Glory"

The judges watch how slow and steady Alex is versus how frantic Richard is behaving. "Don't overthink it," Richard says to himself, worried that his lamb loin might not have been the right choice, as he's having to neglect a few of his other components because of it. "He's only got 11 pots and pans going," Guy says to the judges. "There's no satisfaction in being the first-place loser," Richard adds. "What year is this dish going to be invented in?" Carl asks after the chef smokes his plates tableside.

Flavor Finessing vs. Dramatic Dishing

"What she made in 25 minutes, I'm going to remember for the rest of my life," Carl says of Alex's dish. "For all the finesse that Alex had, Richard had all this drama," Aarti chimes in. "He's the master of dinner-tainment," adds Carl. After much deliberation the judges decide Richard much check out, and he leaves with $5,000 for his charity, Seal Dog Foundation. Alex becomes the Guy's Superstar Games Champion and earns $40,000 for Alex's Lemonade Stand.

Part 4: Guy's World of Fun or Torture

"I'm so sick of Flavortown, I'll take bland town," says Alex, when she hears Guy's next game, which has the chefs using Guy's son Ryder's shopping list of chocolate bars, spicy chips and string cheese to create gourmet dishes. "Sounds like a stomach ache to me," says Richard. But he's not afraid to put his own stamp on it, pulling out the liquid nitrogen to freeze the chocolate, which he plans to shave tableside. "Richard should just cook his entire dish tableside," Alex says of the chef's typical move.

The Serial Ingredient Hider

"I really want to be that person who goes straight into the finale," says Alex, but she's just not inspired by any of the ingredients, instead hiding as much of them as possible. Marc feels the same way, disguising them once again in a risotto. "If I ever rob a bank, I want you to hide me like you hid the special ingredients in this dish," Carl tells Marc. After all the laughs, Marc says, ever so seriously, "We've decided the judge who's going home will be Carl."

Holy Mole Times Three

Interestingly Eric, Richard and Maneet all end up taking their dishes in a mole direction. To give his dish a depth of flavor, Eric toasts pepitas, but the judges think he burned them. "Charred not burned," Eric corrects them. "You'll see why later," he adds. Upon tasting his dish, they realize how much flavor the method has created. But after tasting all five chefs' dishes, the judges decide Richard's dish earns him the right to advance to the finale.

All Bowling Bets Are Off

"This isn't Grocery Games, this is Hunger Games," says Alex as she heads into the elimination round. As Guy reveals the game will be to make an award-winning sandwich by playing Grocery Bowl, she busts out with a sumo move. "That is exactly what we need," says Guy, laughing. But when Alex sees she'll be bowling with melons, her reaction is of disappointment. "I became an Iron Chef; now I'm bowling with cantaloupes in a supermarket," she says.

How Much Is Too Much or Too Little

Even though she could have shopped the bread aisle, Alex decides to make biscuits from scratch for her breakfast sandwich, which the judges applaud. However, Eric gets the opposite in critiques when he presents a BLT. "How much of it is ingredient-driven and how much of it is chef-driven?" Carl asks him. But Eric is offended and says: "What's a chef? A chef's a teacher, and a chef's a shopper as far as I'm concerned." The judges decide both chefs have done enough to move on to the finale.

The Queen of Cuisines

"For Marc it wasn't enough bread, and for Maneet it was too much bread," says Aarti, trying to determine who in the bottom two will go home. "You have stamped our passports in so many different ways," Troy tells Maneet, complimenting her on all the different cuisines she's cooked, including her last, which fused Indian and Vietnamese. Unfortunately it wasn't enough. Maneet checks out, but she leaves with $1,000 for her charity, March of Dimes.

Part 3: Two Chefs Are Better Than One

"We have some carts missing," says Maneet, noticing that there are only three for six competitors. "I do now see an opportunity for something fun," Guy tells the chefs, whom he wants to work in teams. He pairs fellow Chopped judges Maneet and Marc. "My only hope is that we're not going to get, like, handcuffed together," says Marc. But Maneet takes the chance to have some fun.

Sort of Better Together

Guy springs a Grocery List and Budget Battle onto the chefs and their already full plates, with the game requiring them to cook a classic duo. "Jet Blais — that sounds like a classic combo," says Richard of his and Jet's team moniker. "I think most people probably would not want to cook with Richard Blais," says Jet. But they settle on a tuna steak poke and eggs concept, but they run into issues when checking out: 12 cents over their $20 budget.

Beggars Can't Be Choosers

Alex and Eric decide to cook their take on chili cheese fries, with Alex calling it a "chilignese," a cross between a chili and a Bolognese. After spending almost all their money, Alex decides she needs one more crucial ingredient, and she tries to persuade Guy to sell her a sprig of cilantro for 50 cents, as she doesn't have enough to buy the whole bunch. "I'm really not in charge of that area," he tells her, laughing. "No chilignese for you," Alex says.

Even Iron Chefs Cook Fast Food

"Alex really knows how to get full work out of her new employee," Carl points out from the judging table, noticing she's delegating all menial tasks to Eric. "She's got a vision for it, and I don't want to affect it," says Eric, willing to give up his control to the Iron Chef. "When I first saw that we had an Iron Chef on the show, I knew that I was going to get some chili cheese fries," Troy tells the two chefs sarcastically after tasting the dish.

Turning the Competition on Its Head

Although Maneet and Marc's truffle-and-shrimp mac and cheese is met with praise, Aarti finds the flavors aren't "singing" as she had hoped. After Guy announces the two chefs will cook in the elimination round, they erupt with "Yes!" Guy can't believe it, saying, "That's not how it works!" Marc says excitedly, "We get to cook again." And Maneet adds, "That's what we were aiming for!" Alex and Eric win the round and move on to next week.

Sudden Death by Dessert

The bottom four chefs will cook as individuals fighting elimination. "I want you to find that inner dessert chef," Guy tells them, but first it's time to roll the dice to determine the details of the game. When Richard rolls the equipment die, he gets siphon. "I'm the modernist," he states enthusiastically. "I don't even think Marc Murphy knows what a siphon is." Marc's worried because he's never seen the gadget work for any competitor on Chopped. "This is a nightmare for pastry chefs," says Jet, let alone for savory chefs.

The Life of the Party

"I'm not a pastry chef, but no one else is here, either," says Richard, pointing out the even playing field. But he has an idea for two desserts — s'mores and an apple pie — that he thinks will put him ahead of the pack. "You know, he's probably used a siphon or two in his time," Aarti says of Richard's predilection for kitchen gadgets. But even more characteristic of the chef is his use of liquid nitrogen, in this case to freeze the siphoned yogurt: "It's not a Richard Blais party until liquid nitrogen shows up," he says.

Everyone Can't Be a Scientist

"Showoff," Marc shouts at Richard. "These damn young kids." Richard insists on plating the frozen yogurt "popcorn" tableside. Aarti calls Richard's dessert "magic and sorcery," and Troy calls it "an inventive dish." On the other hand, Marc presents a very straightforward apple-and-blueberry crumble, which garners high praise, but Troy worries it might be too safe. "Well, I couldn't do anything else because all the liquid nitrogen was used up," Marc retorts.

Bittersweet Ending

"It's a really intense spice," Troy says about Jet's use of cardamom in his yogurt parfait. Similarly the judges find Maneet's chocolate coffee cake overpowering in its bitterness. Richard and Marc return to the competition, leaving Jet and Maneet in the bottom, but Jet ends up checking out — but not empty-handed. He leaves with $1,000 for his charity, St. Jude's Research Hospital.

Part 2: Crazy or Genius?

"The crazies are here," says Guy as the chefs rush into the market for the second battle in the tournament. He's not necessarily wrong: After Guy reveals the chefs must cook a Fine-Dining Dinner with smoked turkey legs, Richard shouts, "Yes!" And Damaris gobbles. They have only 4 minutes, 30 seconds to shop, and every ingredient must start with the letter R. Alex's response: "Anything else, oh, grand tormentor?"

Laser-Focused Attention

Watching Richard cook, the judges can't help but notice how intense he is. "I'm kind of expecting Richard to just dunk us all in liquid nitrogen and just go for the win," says Alex, looking over at her station partner. Taking a risk, as always, Richard uses the pressure cooker to tenderize the turkey, but judge Aarti is worried. "It could be your best friend or your worst enemy," she says, alluding to whether the meat will overcook in the pressure cooker.

Highfalutin Opinions

"A smoked turkey leg would never be in fine dining," says Marc, adding that if he saw it on a menu, he'd get up and leave the restaurant. He's using it in a risotto, with a rack of lamb as the main component instead. "Sometimes it's a lot easier being a judge and this is one of those times," he says. When it comes to tasting the dish, Carl tells it like it is: "You hid the turkey in this risotto like a bad report card."

Helping a Neighbor in Need

"Guy has assaulted us with so much," says Jet, who can't even think. Since Alex took all the radicchio, there's none left for his planned "veg-forward" dish with turkey marinated in agrodolce. To Jet's luck, Damaris has a radicchio she's not using. "In 41 years I've never met Damaris, and now I can't get away from her," he says of her talkative personality. He pecks her on the cheek to thank her.

Beware of Critiquing an Iron Chef

Alex turns the turkey into lardons to top grilled radicchio and seared scallops. Troy questions if the turkey is the star of the show. But Alex's response puts him in his place. "There's a fine line between saying something's supposed to be the star of the show and then making that mean that I have to put 10 pounds of it on your plate," she says. "I'd like to apologize for Troy for picking on an Iron Chef," says Carl.

The Highs and Lows of Competition

"Never in my life would I ever want to be in a cook-off with these two guys," says Damaris, going into the Survival Round with Richard and Marc after the judges determined the three cooked the turkey least successfully. She's in high spirits when Guy lets her spin the High Wheel, but once he reveals he's not done yet, she turns combative. "I'm about to flip this cart," she says. Guy then takes away their carts.

Two Can Get Saucy at This Game

Since the High Wheel gave the chefs truffles, Richard is inspired to use other high-end ingredients, like wagyu beef and foie gras, in his Guilty Pleasure dish. Unknowingly, Marc grabs the same ingredients, and the two even make the same sauce incorporating the Low Wheel ingredient, grape jelly. But Richard decides to sauce tableside. "It's a little bit pushing the envelope on the rules," Marc says.

Dinner and Dessert in One

"No disrespect to these gentlemen at all, but they gave you the same plate," Damaris says, presenting her macaroni and cheese to the judges. "I made for you exactly what I eat when I'm being decadent," she adds. Even Guy can't resist that good sell, stealing Aarti's portion. But Aarti tries to remind Damaris what the challenge was by asking, "Can you make truffles and grape jelly work together?"

Experiencing Both Sides of the Coin

"You played the game incredibly well," Guy tells Damaris, who checks out with a $1,000 donation to her charity, the Jamyang Foundation. Marc and Richard move on to next week. "Competing against all of these superstars," she says, "has only made me a more compassionate and understanding judge." As she says her goodbyes, she turns to Troy and says, "I'm remembering this when you're going to be in that kitchen."

Part 1: Triple G to the Nth Degree

Guy's invited eight superstar chefs to compete on Triple G. By process of elimination, one chef will be sent home every week until just four remain to compete in the finale for a chance to win $40,000 for charity. Enter Alex Guarnaschelli, Richard Blais, Jet Tila, Damaris Phillips, Eric Greenspan, Maneet Chauhan, Justin Warner and Marc Murphy. "We have never seen a bigger star-studded cast of super chefs on this show," says Guy.

Let the Superstar Games Begin

Before sending the chefs off to shop for their signature dish, Guy reveals the much-anticipated twist: It's Meals from the Middle, which means produce, dairy and meat are off-limits. "I cooked on this show once before, and guess what sent me home? Meals from the Middle," says Jet, worried about how he'll get by this time. "I should just try to make fried rice," he decides, going for full umami flavor.

Action Hero-Like Reflexes

"Alex looks like she's casually walking away from a burning building, that action hero," says Troy, commenting on how unfazed she looks by the challenge. "I'm going straight Italiano on you, baby," Alex tells Guy, cooking spaghetti and falafel meatballs. "Oh my gosh," he says, blown away by the concept. "There's no one more O.G. than Alex," says Justin. "I mean, let's just be real — Alex is going to win," Damaris predicts.

Going with What You Know

"I'm the grilled cheese guy, so I have to do a grilled cheese," says Eric, on the hunt for the "fake cheese" in the market. "It's not a thing," shouts Marc. But Eric eventually finds canned cheese, jarred cheese and a container of shelf-stable Parmesan, plus all the ingredients he needs for a tomato soup to complete his soup-and-sandwich combo.

Going Hip and Homey

"I am a Southern chef, so I make biscuits any time I'm stressed out," says Damaris. "There's something about the kneading of the dough that calms me down," she adds. Guy worries that she won't have enough time to bake them through, but she's confident in her jackfruit "pulled pork" biscuits. "That's so hipster of you," Jet shouts over from his station upon hearing about her vegetarian dish.

Smack Talk: Old School vs. New School

"I just don't want to get shanked by Richard Blais' tweezers," says Marc after passing the chef in the aisles. "Marc is old-school, wooden spoon old-school. I am, obviously, a modern guy, tweezer modern guy," Richard says of his rival. Richard modernizes Bolognese with canned octopus, which he serves in the can. Marc, on the other hand, makes a classic puttanesca.

Great Minds Think — and Sort — Alike

"Justin Warner reminds me a little bit of Richard Blais: twice the hair, half the talent," says Richard. Ironically enough, Justin decides to use canned seafood, too, but for making sushi. After Guy springs a frozen vegetable medley on the chefs, Justin's left to sort out the peas and carrots. Richard also uses just the peas and carrots. "By the way, the hair looks fantastic today," Guy tells Justin.

Seeing Is Believing

After trying Eric's dish, Carl comments that he wishes Eric had used thicker bread. "If Guy would consider providing thicker bread, I would have used thicker bread," Eric retorts. Guy brings Eric a loaf of thickly sliced bread from the bread aisle, and Eric admits to not having seen it and tries on Justin's eyeglasses to poke fun at himself. "I know Eric. I mean, you can't help but love that guy," says Justin.

How Low Can You Stoop, Guy?

Facing Sudden Death for delivering the least successful dishes, Eric and Justin must shop using Kiddie Carts for their all-American favorite. "I can't even bend down that low," says Eric, carrying his cart. "That's not how it's supposed to work," Guy shouts. "We're both thinking burger," says Eric. "And now it just comes down to whose burger's better." Before either chef can start his dish, Guy does a Cart Swap.

"All-American" Opinions

"We're talking about America!" Eric shouts, upset Justin didn't shop for mayonnaise. "Nothing says America to me like jalapenos," Justin remarks sarcastically about Eric's ingredients. Eric's retort: "It's about as American as truffle oil!" Using bacon and pickled jalapenos from Eric's cart, Justin doctors a bottle of Thousand Island dressing. "I'd like to drink this stuff pretty much all day," Troy comments.

First to Check Out: Justin Warner

"It all comes down to a simple burger," says Guy, announcing that Justin will be checking out because of his dry patty. "If I'm checking out, it's not because of a patty melt," Justin says. "It's because I gave Eric Greenspan the most American, wonderful ingredients that have ever been discovered in a kiddie cart." Justin doesn't leave empty-handed: He gets a $1,000 donation for the Arthritis Foundation. Eric returns to battle next week.

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