Jonathan Waxman

Best of the Best

Francis Lam: What's on the Menu?

Curtis Stone's Lemon Creams with Poached Cherries

Bryan Voltaggio: "I Thought I Won. I Know I Won."

Jennifer Jasinski Was a "Great Miracle"

Lesley Suter's 'Ratatouille' Moment

What it Takes to Be Top Chef Master

The Finale Countdown

Doug and Sang: Bad Romance?

Sang is Back!

David Burke Has Titanium Balls

See Ya, Suckers!

Why Jennifer Jasinski Didn't Go Home

James Oseland's Teacher Tribute

Gail: "I Still Can't Believe Sang was Eliminated"

The Strangest Episode of 'Top Chef Masters' Yet?

Lesley Suter: On Tongue, Flautadillas, and Birthday Cake

What Has Curtis Stone "Spewing"?

A Series of Unfortunate Culinary Events Leaves Blood on the Mat

Gail: "We Couldn't Excuse Neal"

Lesley Suter: Hey, Chefs, Why So Raw?

Pull it Together, Sang!

Francis Lam: I liked Sang's Fish

Curtis Stone in Nacho Libre

Gail Simmons: "Neil Went for Our Bellies"

The Evolution of Sue Zemanick

Curtis Stone: Throwing Curveballs

Ruth Reichl: "I'd Rather Be Training a Nation of Food Warriors"

When Plex Met Toodee

'Top Chef Masters' ' Toughest Critics Yet

Gail Simmons: No "Chef" in Lynn's Dish

Restaurant Wars: 'Getting' Busy

Francis: A New Kind of Locavorism

What Being a Chef Really Means

Ruth Reichl's Perfect Los Angeles Restaurant

Restaurant Wars' Controlled Chaos

Franklin Just Did Too Much

Curtis and Lindsay: A Perfect Pairing

Curtis Stone: This Episode Sends Hearts Racing

Franklin, Can You Hear Me?

Jonathan Waxman

The eliminated chef reveals why he didn't put seafood in Chef Cimarusti's box. What was your first reaction when you saw who your competitors were?
Happiness. Roy and I go back 30 years! I adore Art Smith and Michael is someone who is very well-respected. The Quickfire — were you happy with the aisle you got?
Not knowing what to expect or what the format was, I assumed some sort of "test" was involved. The hardest part was my eyesight; I could not read the labels! And yes, I thought it a fairly uninspired aisle. What was the inspiration for your dish?
I don't use inspiration. I kinda use an improvisational technique, which works most of the time. Now the Elimination: Did sabotage ever cross your mind? No.
Why did you decide not to give Chef Cimarusti seafood? Because the seafood was lackluster and I tried to think of protein(s) that would appeal to his Italian roots. And truth be told, it is what I would have chosen for myself! Were you worried at all that the judges/diners wouldn’t respond to your
throwback dish?
Not at all. I had a ball! What did you think of the judges’ comments? Fair, I believe. Judging food is the ultimate in pure subjectivity. Did you get to try the other dishes? You all seemed to form a real bond. Have you all kept in touch? We did have a fabulous time. The crew was ever so helpful; it made our job easy. And since we are so different, the synergy was really quite spontaneous and genuine. I think we have all been so busy, but Roy and I have been in touch because we work the same charity circuit.

What did they teach you?
Respect. Anything else you’d like to add?
Frankly, it was quite different than I expected. I now have a tremendous respect for the Top Chef contestants, both past and present. They have an extremely hard job, with crazy, intense
challenges. Lastly, I always enjoy change and I relish new challenges. This really was a valuable experience.