We had the chance to catch up with Dana Cohen from Hell’s Kitchen just after her elimination. She made it to the final three which is an amazing accomplishment. Watch next week as her best friend Christina Wilson will battle Justin Antiorio to determine the winner of Hell’s Kitchen season 10. Read our previous interview with Dana here.
You can find her online at www.facebook.com/ChefDanaCohen and www.twitter.com/ChefDanaHK.
FoodBeat: How hard was it to be eliminated?
Dana Cohen: I’ll be honest- it wasn’t easy. As we were standing there I really thought I would be called for the final two. When the banners came down and my picture wasn’t there I was surprised. I thought Christina and I would be battling for the winning spot. I wasn’t prepared to go home at all. It was tough but overall I am proud of what I accomplished. I won’t beat myself up for coming in third place because I know I gave it my all.
FoodBeat: What do you think of Justin and Christina as the final two?
Dana Cohen: I have to say I wanted to see myself there, but that didn’t happen. Of all the people I competed with this season, those two deserve to be there. Of course I thought I would be there too! I’m very happy that Christina got a place because I really think she deserved it. I’m glad Justin and Christina got in because they really came to the competition to cook and win. If anyone other than me should be there, it’s those two.
FoodBeat: Christina and you were best friends on the show? Any hard feelings with her moving on instead of you?
Dana Cohen: There are no hard feelings what so ever. While we were friends, we both came to cook and try to win. I’m very proud of her for making it that far. It’s funny because we had talked about who would be in the final two. We were trying to both get there and then battle each other in a final show down. Even though I’m not in the final two, I’m still really glad she got in. It’s not like I lost because of her or Justin. Everybody on the show has their own journey and is competing against themselves.
FoodBeat: So Gordon Ramsay let you keep your jacket, while he took everyone else’s back. That must mean a lot to you.
Dana Cohen: I knew somewhere through the competition that I earned his respect so I wasn’t too surprised at his comments when I left. In the kitchen at dinner service, while he was yelling at me it was never personal. Some of the other chefs didn’t try and you could tell Chef was disappointed with them. He wanted me to be a better chef and when he yelled it was always constructive. I think he saw how hard I was trying. When he gave me my jacket, I think it was him showing me that he respected me. It really meant a lot and it was an amazing gift. He said that it was a very difficult decision because it was such a close call.
FoodBeat: What has being on Hell’s Kitchen done for you and your career?
Dana Cohen: Well I couldn’t really do much while the show was running. Working someplace else will give the results away, right? The winner can’t work at Steak restaurant until the finale episode. Now that I’ve been eliminated I’m making appearances at food festivals and events. I don’t have a plan on what’s going to happen next, but I’m sure it will be exciting.
FoodBeat: Will we see you on television again on other shows?
Dana Cohen: I hope so! I really love the television industry and I want to work somewhere in it. I know that a lot of the other chefs have always dreamed of opening up their own restaurants, but that’s not my path. I mean, I love cooking in a restaurant, but I want to combine television and cooking. This won’t be the last you see of me.
FoodBeat: Any regrets looking back on what happened on Hell’s Kitchen? What about that bikini scene with Clemenza?
Dana Cohen: I have absolutely no regrets! I was always myself. I’m super proud of my time at Hell’s Kitchen and I would not have changed anything, including being on television in a bikini.