Burning Questions

The eliminated chef talks about the twists in New Orleans.

Feb 20, 2009

Bravotv.com: First, what was it like coming back after being away for a bit and watching the show?
Felt good. When you work 120 hour/week it is always good to get one week of break from work, even if was for a competition.

Bravotv.com: What did you think of the Quickfire twist? What were your thoughts on Jeff coming back?
I think he did deserve to be in the final because his dish was better than Jamie and Leah but i don't think he shoud've been there at all. Each one of us went through two more extra challanges. He did get the shortcut. I don't like shortcuts, but he's a good person and a very talented chef, so i guess im fine.

Bravotv.com: What did you think about Emeril as guest judge?
Emeril is awesome. He made an empire out of his passion and I would like to be just like him — pleasant, personable, and a good professionist. He and Colicchio are among if not the best businnessman chefs in this country, and for me it is inspiring to be around them.

Bravotv.com: You said you studied the flavor profiles rather than actual Creole dishes, were you worried about this at all?
No, I was not. Chicken, shrimp, and oysters are chicken, shrimp, and oysters everywhere in the world. I was more worried about the spices. I haven't used many of those and a cajun mix or Creole mix features a lot of them. That's why one of my dishes was missing some heat.

Bravotv.com: What was the inspiration behind your dishes and cocktail?
My partener in crime, Jacopo Falleni, is a great Mixologist and a great drinks connoisseur, among the best in Italy and I sell many of that exact drink every week. Now I agree that it is sweet …