“Top Chef” Recaps: Episode 4.12 “High Steaks”

5 – 1 = Final Four — I’m
not going to lie, my stomach has been in a knot all episode. I’m so nervous, I’ve
been clutching the pen I take notes with so hard I’m surprised it hasn’t
snapped in two. Please, judges, please. Do the right thing.

The cheftestants come back to face the judges. And, as the
winning verdict is read, they all hold hands. It’s kind of sweet. Seriously,
has everyone taken sugar pills since Dale’s departure or what?

Chef Tramonto says he picked the chef he thought he brought
everything — appetizer and entrée — together as winner. And who pulled it off?

Lisa looks genuinely happy for her. Richard, not so much.

As the winner, Stephanie, of course, goes on to the final
four and gets Tramonto’s newest cookbook. But just like in those late-night
infomercials, Padma gives her the old, "But wait, there’s more!" You
didn’t think she was only getting a piddling cookbook, did you? No, she also
gets a full suite of GE Monogram appliances — stoves, ovens, refrigerators, the
whole shebang.

I’ll let this latest gratuitous product placement slide
because the joy on Stephanie’s face is infectious.

Tom then tells Richard his appetizer was the judges’
favorite, so he too is going to Puerto Rico. I’d say the look on his face is
more relief than joy.

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