Three chefs stood competing for the title of Top Chef: Just Desserts‘s inaugural winner on Wednesday night: Morgan Wilson, Danielle Keene and Yigit Pura.
Before one could claim the $100,000 prize, the chefs had to cook a progressive four-course dessert tasting menu for a discerning panel of diners. With no restrictions placed on them – and some high-profile help along the way – the three cooked their hearts out.
Who won in the end? Keep reading to find out!
After a romantic progression of desserts, Yigit Pura was victorious, besting the competition for his sensual and sophisticated offerings. The San Francisco-based chef told his diners he wanted to cook for them as if he was trying to woo them – with each course getting more romantic and rich. (Naturally, his final dish, which he called a “cuddly” ending, was chocolate-based.)
Keene, frankly an underdog in the competition, impressed the judges with her work, which included a cheese course to start. Judges especially enjoyed her homemade root beer and pistachio ice cream, among her other dishes.
Meanwhile, Wilson, an aggressive competitor, seemed to be a frontrunner entering into the finale. His offerings showcased technical mastery – including a perfectly-executed Baumkuchen, or layer cake – and bold flavors. But, ultimately, a technical error – fallen soufflés – undermined his chances at the win.
Along the way, the chefs got some extra help from guests, including master pastry chefs Sherry Yard, Elizabeth Faulkner and Claudia Fleming, as well as past Top Chef competitors, who lent a hand as their sous chefs.
In the end, though, it was a singular victory for Pura. “It is the most spectacular feeling in the world … there [are] no words to describe it”, he said after clinching the title and earning the kudos of his competitors. “I cannot even fathom how this is going to change my career.”
Tell us: Were you happy with the winner? What did you think of the finale?