Best Local Girl Made Good - 2008
She kept the secret for an entire year. But now the whole television-watching world knows that St. Louis' own Christina Machamer won the fourth season of FOX Television's popular reality series Hell's Kitchen, starring blustery British chef Gordon Ramsay. Twenty-six-year-old Machamer, a blond bombshell, gracefully withstood the boils and burns of professional kitchen life with a camera in her face. Even better, she never crumpled under Ramsay's searing tirades, holding up for the duration like a perfect soufflé. Stressful, yes it was, Machamer says, but also "hilarious." Ramsay, she adds, "definitely gets you to grow a pair of bollocks." Now a graduate of the Culinary Institute of America, Machamer has been cooking on the line at Revival (see Best Comfort Food elsewhere in this issue) for the past year, waiting to spill the beans, as it were, while the series played out. Her next stop? Ramsay's London West Hollywood restaurant in Los Angeles. Let's hope she'll be able to set aside a table or two for visitors from St. Louis.