Quickfire: The chefs compete in a series of taste tests, attempting to identify the ingredients. In the first round, the chefs go head-to-head. They have to taste the sauce (salsa verde) and say how many ingredients they can name.
First, it's Danny against Nicole. She says she can name 3 ingredients. He says 4 and then she says 5. He challenges her to name them. She gets 2 right but bombs on the third. So Danny gets to move on to the next round.
Next it's Becky against Chris S. He challenges her at 6 ingredients. She bombs on the third one. And Chris advances.
Next it's Caity and Matt. He challenges her at 5. Again, the third ingredient is the stumbling block. And Matt moves on.
Next, it's Dennis against Geoff. Geoff starts at 5 and Dennis challenges him. Geoff gets 3 right but stumbles on the fourth. So Dennis goes to the next round.
Now it's Jonathan and Rory. Rory says he can name 3 and Jon says go ahead. Rory guesses "pea" as his first guess and is wrong. And Jon moves on.
Second round: The sauce is peanut sauce. The chefs take turns naming an ingredient. Dennis says cream and is the first eliminated in this round. Matt says ginger and is out. Jon says rice wine vinegar and is also out.
In the final round, Danny and Chris take turns identifying the ingredients in a barbecue sauce. Chris is eliminated with the guess of paprika. So Danny gets immunity.
Elimination: The chefs have to create a new national dish. It's a high stakes challenge. The winning dish will win $10,000. The guest judge is David Rocco.
Most of the chefs make some sort of slider. Becky makes a split pea soup. Nicole make "beaver balls". Chris makes a bologna but messes it up and has to abandon it.
On top: Matt, Caity and Danny.
On the bottom: Chris S., Rory and Jonathan.
The winner is Danny. And surprise - it's a double elimination. Chris and Rory are sent home.
I was a bit disappointed with the lack of creativity. Pulled pork is not Canadian, it's American. And the sliders were boring. Even though the judges liked Matt and Caity's sliders, I wished there were fewer sandwich/sliders. And most of the dishes had only a tenuous link to Canada.
I thought Danny's win was well deserved. His spin on a lobster roll was clever, combining east coast and west coast ingredients. Though a lobster roll would not be considered strictly Canadian, since they're probably also found on the American east coast as well.
I'm kind of sad that Chris S is gone. I was starting to like his juvenile, frat-boy charm.
Does anybody else think that the first round of the Quickfire was not really fair? It wasn't so much a test of their palates as it was a bluffing game. It was more about gamesmanship - how high can you challenge the other to go?
Restaurant wars next week. The preview looks like its going to be a disaster.