Burning Questions

The Season 5 winner dishes on his menu, Stefan, and, of course, Leah.

Feb 25, 2009

Bravotv.com: Did you agree with the judges’ comments about your dishes?
I have tried to take everything the judges have said to me during this competition as constructive feedback. You never stop learning. I have learned so much because of this experience. I didn't always agree, but I never disagreed, if that makes sense.

Bravotv.com: Did you think you would win, or you were unsure until the end?
I was never sure I was going to win. What I was sure of was that it was probably my best performance of the entire competition. I was happy with my food and I enjoyed myself. It was such an honor just to be here. And to make it all the way … I feel extremely lucky.

Bravotv.com: What are you going to do with the money?!
I am trying to open a restaurant of my own. I also will be spending a lot of time with my parents over the next few months, helping them out. My dad is having a serious battle with cancer. He is getting worse. My mom lives alone and is also dealing with a number of illnesses. This money gives me the freedom to be with them and help them out for a while.

Bravotv.com: How would you describe your experience overall? Would you do it over again?
Hands down the hardest thing I've done as a chef. I don't wish that kind of stress on anyone.  I would do it again if the prize had a few more zeros on the end of it!!!!!!