Chatting With the Latest Next Iron Chef: Redemption Exile

by in Shows, December 16th, 2012

Chef Guarnaschelli and Chef VigneronThe fifth season of The Next Iron Chef: Redemption is in full swing with now only four familiar chefs battling it out again to prove they’ve got the skills to win the ultimate prize: the title of Iron Chef.

Each chef will try to pull out all their tricks to stay in the competition but, ultimately, one chef must go home each week. Every Sunday, FN Dish brings you exclusive exit interviews with the latest chef to go home.

The final four rivals meet Alton Brown and a special guest, Master of Illusion, David Copperfield, and together they reveal the Chairman’s Challenge of Transcendence in Episode 7. In two pairs, the chefs prepared a buffet focused on salty, succulent bacon, offering three hot dishes and two cold ones for 30 people. On account of several technical flaws, Chefs Guarnaschelli and Vigneron, rivals who faced off against each other in the Chairman’s test of Simplicity, were deemed the least-successful cooks of the day and were sent to the Secret Ingredient Showdown. A last-ditch effort to rescue a raw rack of lamb, however, couldn’t save Chef Marcel Vigneron, ousted just one week short of the finale.

This challenge was all about transcending the Vegas buffet. What’s your guilty pleasure at a buffet?
MV: King crab and shrimp cocktail. I could eat my weight in it.

Throughout the season, what were your favorite and least-favorite challenges?
MV: My favorite was the “Risk” challenge and not just because I won, but rather because I loved the auction concept of bidding with time instead of money. I also really enjoyed breaking down and cooking the calves’ heads.

Out of all the rival chefs, which chef (besides Chef Mendelsohn), would be your ultimate teammate?
MV: Besides Chef Mendelsohn, my ultimate teammate would probably be Chef Greenspan because I love his cooking style and we go way back.

How did this competition experience compare to others you’ve done? What have you learned?
MV: I thoroughly enjoyed my experience on The Next Iron Chef! As far as how the experience compares to other competition shows: In my opinion it blows them out of the water because it focuses on the food, which for me is the most important thing in a cooking show.

You’ve proven that you’ve matured and can cook amazing dishes. Do you think you did better without Chef Mendelssohn or at least that you were more focused?
MV: I believe that I did relatively well and was focused the entire time, regardless of whether Chef Mendelsohn was there or not. In the beginning the judges mainly knocked me for presentation. Once I figured out what they were looking for and began to understood their palates, I started to cater my dishes toward their expectations which allowed me to excel in the competition.

What’s next for you?
MV: I will continue to run my catering company through my website, and I have also started working with Summit.

Read more about Chef Vigneron

Relive the episode and take a look at an extended preview of next week’s final episode below (click the play button):

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Comments (323)

  1. Trish says:

    I know this doesn't mean anything, but surprised that Alex doesn't follow Zakarian on Twitter. I thought they were "bff". /sarcasm
    Actually she doesn't follow any of her fellow Chopped judges at all (except AF and Marcus S). Weird. Just cause the "Chopped Gang" just seem really close and usually tweet each other and stuff….

  2. Guest says:

    For me, this is a toss up. I like all of the remaining contestants. For those hating on Alex, consider this. Their task was to create a savory dish using two types of chocolate. She used dark chocolate on the duck breast and heart. Yes, she shaved the white chocolate for the salad as a component. It married perfectly with the fennel and cherry. Her presentation was lovely and festive as a result. Marcel grossly undercooked his lamb and made a dish that traditionally has chocolate as a component. With the exception of the risotto, there was not as much creativity in his dish, technically it was inferior, and his plating lacked finesse. For those hating on Nate, in all of the times I have seen him perform, he has been competent to outstanding. My heart goes out to him based on the love he has for his son. For those who don't remember he appeared on "Chopped All Stars" fighting for the Kawasaki Foundation because his son suffers from the condition. He is a fighter. May the best person win.

  3. Myron says:

    I don't believe Chef AG has really embraced the challenges. She has progressed by ignoring the rules and relying on her friend who is a judge.

  4. ChrisM says:

    Honestly, I can't see any of the finalists as an IC. Alex is a hot mess, Nate is too angry, and Amanda is just kind of too….prissy.

  5. Carlo says:

    Of the three remaining chefs I feel Appleman has the most skill and ability to think quickly under stress and time constraint and knows how to remain calm. I know he lacks in personality which is a big factor in being on FN roster but he does show fierce competitiveness and chops. After all he did beat some impressive talent on Chopped show like Iron Chef Forgione and other All Star chefs. In the end it will be Appleman vs. Amanda.

  6. Mario says:

    If the final showdown is Amanda F. Vs. Aleg G. then it will be really obvious that this show is rigged.

  7. darmiller137 says:

    Ugh! Marcel was THE most annoying chef ever and I would not have watched any show he was on. He was a complete and utter unprofessional frat boy who seemed to not be able to manage without his bro. Give me a break. He's got some talent, but no more than anyone else there. This is NOT what I look for in an Iron Chef.

  8. Marsha says:

    Boy!!! The people on reaaallyy hate AG,,,,but I think she's a great cook, glad Faulkner is gone she thought she deserved to win just because FN brought her back, hated her attitude….hope AG wins…either way it's just my opinion….I would love to see all of "us" who are bashing these chefs on a reality show like this and see how we turn out!

  9. Thinkson23 says:

    You guys are all funny. Guess what? Appleman will win. Another white male. Yay…..NOT.

  10. John says:

    This is sham to make Alex win. No more food network foe me. Bu bye

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