Gail Simmons

Gail Simmons appreciates the season opener's classic challenges.

on Nov 7, 2012

Bravotv.com: Well next we’re on to Emeril’s kitchen, where he makes his chefs make soup. 
GS: It was a good group. Soup is also a thing that appears very simple to make, but you need to build a lot of flavor. You can make it quickly, but you want it to stand out and have it be fresh and full and rich and deep.  So I thought it was actually a good challenge to see what they did. And I love how diverse the soups were; all completely different.

I can only imagine how complicated it was for Stephanie and Kristen to be cooking together. You’re so used to cooking with a team, cooking on a line where you’re there to help each other, not to battle against each other. It’s counter-intuitive when you’re at a really high level in the kitchen to have to compete against your fellow chefs all of a sudden.

Josh did a great job. He is taking the risk of possibly missing his child's birth by being on the show. I don’t think it’s his first child, but still, it’s pretty crazy how much that matters. 

Bravotv.com: Next up is Wolfgang and the omelets.
GS: The omelets! Classic French challenge. Some of them were brown and crusty. And I noticed that a few chefs put a vegetable mess on top of their omelet creations in order to make sure Wolfgang didn’t see what was underneath! But Wolfgang seemed so nice about it. I think Wolfgang’s just a softie. I would not have been that tolerant!

Bravotv.com: Next we’re in Hugh’s kitchen, where they make salads.
GS: Yes, there was a lot of run-around and craziness going on. I liked seeing Hugh in the kitchen. I’ve actually never seen him in his own kitchen before. Adorable!

Bravotv.com: Gina didn't seem to be too thrilled about going home -- she referred to herself as "a movement." 
GS: That was great -- she was horrified at being removed! It’s a huge shock to your ego and often you don’t know exactly why you are eliminated, but that’s because you only taste your own dish. You don’t have perspective on yourself. That’s what I meant when I said before that they contestants have to learn to cook to each chef’s expectations, even when they don’t know them. 

Bravotv.com: So what can we expect from the new season, moving forward? The trailer looks really good at the end.
GS: Every season we try to do something totally new and different. Especially this season, there are a few huge twists in the plot that I cannot wait to reveal to the world! We really tried to get a little more back-to-basics with regards to the food and the challenges. The guest judges are still amazing, and we have so much fun with them, but the challenges are more streamlined this time around, and I think and that’s really helpful and exciting. Seattle’s also just really beautiful, especially in July when we shot the show. Great weather. Food is at its peak: all those beautiful fruits and vegetables and seafood! I gorged myself on Rainier cherries and peaches the whole time we were there. It’s a pretty incredible corner of the world and I cannot wait for our audience to explore it with us!