Monk: After an extremely successful stint recapping season 2 (ha), I’m back to recap the third season of BBQ Brawl, which airs on Monday nights at 9pm ET on Food Network. Let’s brawl!
After Sunny went home last week, Bobby and Jet are both down to their last contestant and have already used their steal card. So if either lose this week, they are officially out before the finale. That would be huge for Bobby, who has won each of the first two seasons of “BBQ Brawl.” Even in light of that, Bobby and Jet make a pact to team up against Anne, who still has two contestants left (aka “Team Beefcake”). What they could actually do to put Anne at a disadvantage remains to be seen.
With that, Jet goes for a “BBQ Goes Viral” challenge under the guise of “everyone needs social media” (or something), with each chef creating a meal in 30 minutes that is “most likely to go viral.” The contestant who wins will of course get an advantage in the Team Brawl.
Tina and Winnie are both not as social media savvy and Anne is worried about Rashad because while he has good plating he needs some focus. Don grew up with the internet and is generally comfortable using Instagram to advertise his pop-ups. However in general, the 30 minute time limit of the challenge gets to the contestants so no one quite knocks it out of the park.
Of the four imperfect dishes, Winnie wins with her shrimp head taco dish and even though Jet was worried about her time management on this challenge.
The Team Brawl is to create the “ultimate Instagram-worthy feast” which means anything goes as long as the meal gets likes and comments while still tasting good (i.e. “foodogenic).
The photos of each meal will be put to a vote on the Food Network Instagram account and this will factor into the judges decision. Because Winnie won the Advantage Challenge she will get ten minutes with Food Network food stylist Munah Gomes during the Team Brawl. This will surely help her get to the finale. The captains will team up with the contestants on the meal.
Team Jet goes with a Hawaiian luau theme while Team Anne goes with a mish-mash of foods under the umbrella theme of “comfort food BBQ.” Team Bobby is going to lean into Tina’s southern roots to go with a “south by southwest BBQ” with the showpiece of a pork crown roast that Bobby gets a good char on before putting into the smoker.
In terms of cooks, the judges express some concerns with the cohesiveness of Team Anne’s menu when they see Don’s pho and Rashad’s grilled cheese. Bobby’s crown roast has some issues getting up to temp. Winnie and Jet are in a good spot except Winnie doesn’t like the size of Jet’s pineapple chunks for her fried rice.
Team Jet dominates the voting with 55% of the overall vote, so they win the challenge and Winnie is on to the finale. It seems as if the advantage challenge really helped out this week. And the judges are impressed with the Cornish game hen, smoked crab sushi, and Winnie’s chiffon cake.
Team Bobby is the losing team with an unevenly cooked crown roast, some lackluster collards and only the green beans a highlight. That means Bobby has officially lost as no one on his team is left to compete in the finale.
Team Anne (aka Team Beefcake) gets two contestants into the finale, which appears to be a whole hog challenge. While its too late to salvage this uneven season, perhaps it will lead to some great drama in addition to being a legit barbecue challenge.
Is Winnie going to keep her momentum in the finale? Will Anne’s two-to-one advantage get her the crown after dominating most of the season? Will Bobby actually be a complete bystander in the finale? Check back here next week and find out.