It was all smiles at Fort Lauderdale's 3030 Ocean last night when LaTasha McCutchen was announced as the winner of Season 13 of Fox's Hell's Kitchen. For the past few weeks, the restaurant has held weekly screenings of the show, wondering if yet another cook from this celebrated kitchen would go into the annals of reality cooking history. By winning, McCutchen joins 3030 chef Paula DaSilva, who placed second on Hell's Kitchen back in 2007, and sous chef Adrienne Grenier, who won Chopped back in 2012, as the third 3030 alumni to make it to the finals of a major cooking show.
McCutchen's rise to culinary greatness began with Paula DaSilva when she had left 3030 Ocean to open 1500 Degrees at the Eden Roc on South Beach. Last year, DaSilva was asked to return to 3030, ostensibly ousting the restaurant's founder and her mentor, Dean Max. She brought McCutchen with her, who DaSilva says has been her "extra set of hands."
Secretive until the end, DaSilva informed us last night after the win that McCutchen had already resigned from the restaurant, and would be heading to Los Angeles today to begin her tenure as one of Gordon Ramsay's chefs. Last night, McCutchen was in Atlantic City, watching the show from what will be her new restaurant. Needless to say, she'll be missed around Fort Lauderdale.