As one of the three Top Chef Season 20 finalists, Gabriel Rodriquez, Gabri, had highs and lows throughout the culinary competition. Although he faced elimination on some occasions, he was always able to find a way to make it through. Finding his groove toward the end of the season, his final few cooks showcased his creativity.
Top Chef World All-Stars promised the best and brightest culinary talent from the Top Chef franchise. While the American chefs might be well-known to some viewers, the other chefs were personalities that fans grew to love. One of them was Gabri.
Regardless of the twist thrown at him, Gabri seemed to tackle each one with a smile. Even during the mise en place challenge, he did not let his lack of experience get him down.
At the same time, viewers were intrigued with many of his offerings. The mole with too many ingredients to name had people hitting pause to better understand that complexity. Even though he often showcased humble ingredients, which is common in some Mexican dishes, Gabri used classic techniques to bring modernity to the plate.
Ahead of the Top Chef Season 20 finale, Gabri spoke to FoodSided. After discussing his favorite and least favorite Top Chef World All-Stars challenges, there was another question that everyone had to know. What about that “gato” nickname.
While it might have been a reference to the cat with nine lives, there might have been some good luck in that nickname. All those ups and downs could have made him stronger going into the finale.
Gabri said, “Oh definitely, it helped me a lot, it helped me to recognize my mistakes and to improve myself. That’s the way I’ve been learning.”
Even though all these chefs have strong culinary backgrounds, the opportunity is more than just a cooking challenge. The chefs seemed to evolve through the season.
For Gabri, he said that the Top Chef journey “It changed me a lot, I want to be more refined in my cooking style, and of course it has opened my world!”
Although Gabri might be evolving his perspective on cooking and the culinary world, Mexican gastronomy should not be overlooked. When asked, Gabri shared that Mexican cuisine has tremendous versatility. At the same time, there is a modern point of view without forgetting its roots.
No matter the outcome in the Top Chef Season 20 finale, Gabriel Rodriquez has proved himself on the world stage. Many people will be excited to sit at his table and enjoy his food.