Jessica Cabo was a contestant on Season 1 of Hell's Kitchen. She was on the blue team. She ranked in 3rd place.
Jessica was quiet at the beginning, but when she found her voice, she became more confident, and was one of the best chefs of the season. But, she was never shy of her opinions and was never scared to say what she was really thinking about a situation. The best example being when she convinced Ralph and Michael to sabotage Elsie during dinner service.
Season 1 Edit
Jessica was the tenth contestant to have her Signature Dish judged by Ramsay. She served shelled crabs cooked Cajun style with spicy oil, which was so hot that Ramsay had to drink a whole bottle of water to cool his mouth down. After the challenge, she was placed on the blue team, along with Ralph, Michael, Wendy, Andrew, and Mary Ellen.
During dinner service, Jessica was on the fish station. She was very unnoticed during that service, which was incomplete because Ramsay shut down both kitchens after many tables left. The blue team team won the dinner service, but Ramsay told that they did not win, and that they were just safe.
After a brutal wake up call the next morning, all the contestants were told to get down to the dining room, where Ramsay explained the next challenge, which was the Cleaning Squid Challenge. Jessica cleaned 1 squid to Ramsay's standards, but the blue team lost the challenge 5-6. They were punished by cleaning all the squids for the next service.
The night before service, Jeff was suffering a kidney stone, and was lying in the hallway in pain. When Jessica approached him to ask if he was okay, she touched him on the back and he fell further towards the ground. She did not feel any sign of worry, as she felt he was a hypochondriac.
During dinner service, as the second part of their punishment, the blue team cooked without air conditioning. Jessica was on the dessert station. She was very unnoticed during this service as she did not made many mistakes. After Jean-Philippe was physically assaulted, Ramsay shut down both kitchens, and the blue team was declared winners after few main courses went out.
After elimination, Jeff showed everybody his kidney stone, but Jessica was unimpressed and compared it to a mustard seed.
Before the 5 Course Meal Challenge, Jessica and her team said goodbye to Michael, who has just been transferred to the red team. During the challenge, she served a grilled pineapple with potatoes as a cold starter. After hesitating on what her last ingredient was, Ramsay noticed it and said that she sounded like she did not know what she made. She did not score for her team as he found her dish was tasteless. The blue team lost the challenge after a tie-breaker at 3, and were punished by cleaning the dorms.
During dinner service, Jessica was on the garnish station. She received very grateful help from Ralph, which she acknowledged to be the strongest link of the blue team. They lost the service after tables walked out and Ramsay shut down both kitchens. Ralph was named "Best of the Worst".
Jessica was not nominated for elimination, but took Wendy's elimination very hard emotionally as they became close friends.
During the Perfect Table Challenge, the blue team managed to make only one mistake, compared to the red team's four, therefore winning the challenge. They were rewarded with a day of relaxation and spa treatment in the dorms.
During dinner service, Jessica was on the meat station with Ralph. Her first Wellingtons were cooked perfectly, and Ramsay told her that he wanted every single one of them like that. Later, she served a very good lobster spaghetti. The blue team eventually lost the service because they failed to serve all their diners before the red team. However, Ramsay noticed that she improved since her last services and that her cooking was spot on. She was named "Best of the Worst", and was asked to nominate two of her teammates for elimination.
When they got back to the dorms, Jessica was crying, feeling guilty for Mary Ellen's elimination. When she went to the bathroom, Elsie comforted her and told her it was hard for everybody. She got out of the bathroom saying it was bullshit, and was immediately comforted again by Chris, who told her it was not her fault.
During the Pasta Making Challenge, Jessica helped Ralph by pouring flour in the machine, so the dough would not get stuck inside. The blue team lost the challenge, managing to get only 2,41 lbs of pasta acceptable, compared to the red team's 2,45. So, they had to make all the remaining pasta for the pasta themed dinner service.
The night before service, when the red team came back from their reward, Jessica had a conversation with Michael, who tried to know how the blue team was feeling after their loss. But, she saw his plans and did not told much.
During dinner service, the blue team served during the first seating, and cooked during the second. During the first seating, Jessica was feeling insecure as she never waited tables before, and was always asking for help from the staff. With 10 minutes left, she was giving random main courses to customers because the red team could not produce enough food for everybody, as she wanted her customers to be happy. Before the second seating, she had to calm down an argument between Ralph and Andrew because of the latter's inability to listen to people. When the second seating started, a lot of orders of lasagna came in the kitchen. She realized that the red team was trying to sabotage the blue team, and because of that, she told her team that the red team were assholes. After she brought what Ramsay called "dog's dinners" to the hot plate, Ramsay decided to shut down the kitchen, with 17 tickets to go, as the time limit of two hours was over. The blue team was declared winners because of their good service in the dining room, and their food of better quality than the red team's.
After Elsie escaped elimination, Jessica comforted her by telling she was deserving to be there. But, Chris' elimination was the hot topic as it was really unexpected, and it made her realize that she could beat anyone, and it was not because Michael and Ralph were having more experience that they were unbeatable.
During the Blind Taste Test, she missed all four foods. The blue team lost the challenge 1-4, and had to wash the entire restaurant's dishes.
The night before the next service, Ramsay announced that both teams would create their own menus. Jessica did not have a lot of input on the menu as Ralph took total control of it. Even her idea of a chocolate cheesecake dessert was not approved by him.
Before service, as the second part of the punishment, the blue team's baby chickens were in the pantry room that was locked. Ramsay gave the combination once to get them, and when they got it on their first attempt, Jessica gave Andrew some white tape so he could be sure that the door would not lock again, before getting busted by Sous Chef Scott.
During dinner service, Jessica was on the garnish station. When a hair was found in one of her dishes, she said it was not hers, but Ramsay responded that he did not care who's hair it was. Later, when Andrew struggled with the poached halibut, she was told by Ralph to lend him a help. Because of her help, Andrew's halibut successfully made it to the customers, but were sent back because they were overcooked. Ramsay shut down both kitchens because too many orders came back, and declared the blue team losers. He also told her that her performance was consistently average. Despite this, she was named "Best of the Worst" because she did not took part of the halibut conspiracy between Andrew and Ralph, and was asked to nominate one of her teammate for elimination.
Following Andrew's elimination, Jessica had a late night conversation with Ralph, who has just escaped elimination, telling him he deserved to be there. Later, Elsie told her she wanted to get out of there to see her family again.
Before the first individual challenge, Jessica was the fourth contestant to receive a black jacket. When the Tableside Fruit Flambé Challenge began, she forgot her cart on her way to get her ingredients. So, she had to go back and get it. When Ramsay commented her plate, he noticed raw sugar on her banana. She lost the challenge, and had to clean the entire dining room ahead of the next service.
During dinner service, Jessica was on the meat station. A lot of meat orders came in, so it was her biggest task. At one point, the pan she was working with came on fire, and she tried to extinguish it by blowing on it, without success. Moments later, power went out in the restaurant, but only for a few seconds. Later, she ran out of filet mignons, claiming she only had two left, and was not enough to complete the orders. She started arguing with Ramsay, giving him attitude like if she did not care anymore, but eventually got some help from Michael, much to her relief, as she was clearly asking for some. After a heated argument between Jimmy and Ramsay, the kitchen was shut down, while Ramsay told her she let him down during this service. Ralph was named "Best of the Worst".
During the Leftovers Challenge, Jessica made a beef stew as an entrée, and a strawberry and raspberry cake for dessert. While Ramsay said it looked a mess, it was tasting delicious. She lost the challenge to Elsie, and was so jealous that she wanted to taste her chicken soup. She was punished by prepping the kitchen ahead of that night's service. During prep, she got to see Elsie's appearance on "Good Day Live". After that, she convinced Ralph and Michael to let her aside during service.
During dinner service, Jessica began on the appetizer station. The first salad she sent was called shit by Ramsay, and was asked to redo it. After one hour, Ramsay made the team switch stations for the first time. So, she moved to the meat station. At the second switch, she moved to the fish station. When she got there, she did not know how much time she was going to need, saying three minutes, but still was not sure. The next dishes she brought to the pass were called "Dewberry's dog's dinner" by Ramsay, so she had to start once again. After a dish who contained a piece of wood was sent back, Ramsay told her, and asked her not to complain about it. Then, Ramsay shut the kitchen down, and nobody was safe. Ramsay declared he would come with his own decision.
Jessica was Ramsay's first nominee for elimination, with Elsie being the second. She survived elimination.
When Jessica was told by Michael to get in the blue kitchen with her jacket on at 4 am, she did not believe him for a second, and tried to convince him to go to sleep. But, when Sous Chef Scott came in the dorms himself, she knew it was true. Ramsay asked the final three to make bread because the baker was not able to provide the restaurant with bread. She was still very tired and a little drunk, so she laid on the counter to rest, and when Ralph and Michael organized most of the baking process, she was sent back to sleep by those two. Two hours later, she finally got up, ready to help.
After that, she went back to sleep for two more hours, before being woke up by Sous Chef Mary-Ann playing a triangle. Ramsay explained the Perfect Soufflé Challenge, and during the judging, Jessica's soufflé was deemed pretty shit by Ramsay, adding that it was the worst soufflé he ever tasted. She came in last place, so when the contestants picked their main ingredient for their special dish of that service, she was left with chicken.
During the making of her chicken dish, Jessica did not know what to do and asked a lot of help from the Sous Chefs. During dinner service, she was on the dessert station. In addition to manage her station, she was responsible for preparing her dish. When the first order of chicken came in, she needed one more minute, so Ramsay sent back the other dishes that came to the pass before hers. Later, when dessert orders came in, she struggled to keep up with them because she was concerned about her chicken dish as well. When her chicken dish made it to Ralph's fiancée, the latter spat it out. Because she struggled a lot with her desserts, Michael took her chicken dish over to continue sending out main courses. A few minutes later, she failed to give a proper time for her desserts to be ready, which led Ramsay to lose his patience. He lost his patience once again when she was giving attitude about her bad timing with the desserts. After she slipped and dropped a plate to the floor, she started panicking and asked for help from Michael and Ralph. Two and a half hours into service, she sent unacceptable soufflés to the pass, and asked Ramsay if he could help her. He categorically refused, and Jean-Philippe went speaking to her in the kitchen. After the last main courses were sent out, she was joined by Ralph and Michael, and they helped her finishing the desserts. Her chicken dish was the second most popular out of the three dishes.
At elimination, Jessica was visited by her girlfriend, her mom and her sister. After each member of each family got to reveal the dish they enjoyed the most, she got the least number of votes with only 1 for her chicken dish. Therefore, Ramsay eliminated her, but he praised her hard work and told her he was proud. Then, he did her a favor and told her to go by the front door, with her family, because she deserved it. Ramsay gave no comment on Jessica's elimination, and she received a retrospective montage of her run during her exit interview.
When Jessica came back for the last dinner service of the season, she was Michael's first pick, followed by Jimmy and Elsie, and the first pick overall. She stated she was not particularly happy about this as she would have preferred to be on Ralph's team. During prep, she did not seem very focused because she was not on Ralph's team, and dropped a metal tray to the ground while grabbing Wellingtons.
During dinner service, on the first order, Jessica did not answer back immediately when Michael called the first ticket, so she told him to repeat it. Because of Michael's confusion, she switched off and cooked as an individual, just like her teammates. More than an hour into service, she was giving attitude to Michael, refusing his authority, because she was still in a bad mood about not being on Ralph's team. After that, she got into a heated argument with Elsie, telling her to shut up, and Michael had to calm the situation down. Three hours into service, she quickly recovered and successfully completed service for Michael. After service, she congratulated him by saying the menu was easy to execute. Michael ended up winning the finals over Ralph.
Nomination history Edit
- She is the first openly gay female contestant of Hell's Kitchen.
- She is the first contestant to be eliminated without nomination.
- Before her appearance on the show, she appeared on the first season of Extreme Dodgeball, as one of the players of the Ink, Incorporated team, with her nickname being “Wabo”.
- After her appearance on the show, she returned cooking in one of her friend's restaurant, before opening her own restaurant in Santa Monica, called Brick+Mortor. In 2013, she became Head Chef at CAM Café at the Cameron Art Museum. She is currently the Head Chef of East Oceanfront Dining located inside The Blockade Runner Beach Resort, in Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina.
- "It sucks, I'm a little bitter!"