Aaron Sanchez reveals one big factor will impact MasterChef Generations, interview

MasterChef Generations, judges Gordon Ramsay, Aaron Sanchez, Joe Bastianich
MasterChef Generations, judges Gordon Ramsay, Aaron Sanchez, Joe Bastianich / FOX

While food might be the common connector, MasterChef Generations questions how age influences culinary greatness. During a recent interview with Chef Aaron Sanchez, he reflected on how the generational groupings will impact the popular FOX competition.

Over the course of 14 Seasons, MasterChef engages viewers and has them investing in the home cooks’ journey. While Mystery Boxes and classic challenges are must-watch episodes, it is the individual chef’s stories and journey that keep people watching episode after episode.

For MasterChef Season 14, the theme is generations. While MasterChef is a multi-generational food television show, grouping the contestants by age is more than just a convenient sorting method. It opens a discussion to how each person thinks, approaches a challenge, and even communicates.

During a recent conversation with Chef Aaron Sanchez, he shared his thoughts on MasterChef Generations. Without revealing any secrets to the season, Chef Aaron thinks that the different ages will engage the viewers.

He said that the biggest factor that will stand out with the generations concept is that everyone can relate to the various groups. From grandma to Gen X, people can see themselves in the show.

Specifically, Chef Aaron said, “the generations and their cooking styles are distinct and contrasting. Putting them in this competitive setting has all the ingredients and is the formula for fireworks.”

While every generational group will have their fan base cheering, Chef Aaron thinks that one aspect might influence the challenges. He believes that communication will be vital to success.

When asked about how the different generations will effectively communicate, Chef Aaron said that the personalities and approaches were all over the place. He admitted that that he was “brought up to always defer to an elder, not talk back, and assume that they know before because they have been on this Earth longer,” but other generations are different.

From the millennials who are constantly on their cell phone to the Gen Xers who have no problem using their disposable income to travel and eat out, everyone is different. Still, they are need to not only get along with their group but also build a bridge to the other cooks. Everyone will have to watch to see how the competition plays out.

As the groups tackle each challenge, there is an opportunity to learn and grow, which is at the heart of MasterChef. It is more than just perfecting a cooking technique.  There needs to be an appreciation for the traditions, cultures, and nuances that comes from the culinary knowledge.

Chef Aaron said, “I believe that dishes should be rooted in tradition, that they should have some authenticity element to them.”  At the same time, he believes that there are opportunities to learn from the other generations.

Speaking about what could be learned from the younger generation, he said, “their boldness of mixing flavors” is something that the older generation could appreciate.  They might not have ever thought about putting tamarind with fish, but that flavor could change their way of thinking going forward.

While all the generations will need to be open to new experiences, Chef Aaron believes that one group could hold an advantage. He said that older generations might have more exposure to ingredients due to their life experiences and food memories. In addition, he believes that older generations know how to listen, avoid talking over each other, and be a little more nurturing. Whether or not this prediction comes true remains to be seen.

Although communication is key within the teams and for the cooks’ overall success, the spirited banter between the judges is one of the reasons why MasterChef continues to resonate with viewers. For the past seven seasons, Chef Aaron has been part of the judging panel.

Describing the judges’ rapport, he shared, “it is really a beautiful mix, we learn from each other, and we all have a different set of experiences. We give all these different perspectives.”

Even though he might think of Joe Bastianich as “an older brother” and he had a good laugh when Lidia Bastianich would “bust Joe’s chops” during the Baby Boomer audition episode, there is a respect and a bond between them all. The trio is stronger together and viewers appreciate their connection.

From a few laughs to impressive dishes that wow the judges, MasterChef Generations will have fans watching every episode. Which age group will earn the title? Only time will tell.

MasterChef Generations, MasterChef Season 14, airs new episodes Wednesday nights at 8 p.m. ET/PT. Episodes can be streamed the next day on Hulu.