Food Network Star judges told Chef Jernard Wells he was too stiff, didn't let his personality show in last week's elimination challenge. Sunday night, the former Chattanoogan let his guard down, got his swagger on and the old Jernard Wells, The "Chef of Love" that his friends here know, was back.
The remaining eight contestants were first challenged with making a one-minute Snapchat video sharing a food hack. They had to choose a cooking utensil, use it in an unexpected way in cooking a dish, then explain that in their Snapchat video. Wells made Cajun-fried chicken, making his barbecue sauce in a martini shaker.
"You have that Jernard swagger," Judge Bobby Flay noticed about the chef's personality improvement in his tape, and encouraged the chef to keep it up. Guest judge Katie Lee from "The Kitchen" complimented his chicken as "nice and crispy." Although Wells didn't win, it was obvious to viewers he was among the top three.
For the elimination challenge, contestants had to participate in a video-game car race. Their times when they crossed the finish line determined the order in which they got to choose their meats for a tailgating dish. Wells came in second and chose chicken wings.
Contestant Ana Quincoces finished last and was left with tofu on the protein list. The contestants had to serve their food to a group of Nascar tailgaters and the judges. Wells smoked Tipsy Tequila Wings with chipotle sauce. He made the judges laugh at his story of a tailgating tequilla drinking game he and his wife played at Ole Miss football games. Judge Giada DeLaurentiis later told Wells his chicken wings were "divine and his presentation was super fun." Flay said Wells' chicken bites were "finger-licking good." Judges chose Wells as one of this week's top three.
So from the bottom three last week to the top three this week, Wells advanced to cook again.