Jason Zepaltas is one of the two finalists on Hell’s Kitchen season 12. He’s very energetic, passionate, and a great chef. Check out all the facts on Jason.
1. This Is Jason’s Second Time on Hell’s Kitchen
Jason previously appeared on season 9 of Hell’s Kitchen, but had to leave early on when he suffered from dehydration. Lake Zurich Times writes:
Zepaltas’ airtime during season 9 lasted only a portion of the first episode because he was hospitalized for dehydration, forcing him to withdraw from the competition. The dehydration was said to have been brought on by the celebrating he and his teammates did the night before their tacos won the show’s signature dish challenge. Zepaltas said his condition was not quite as bad as the show made it seem with footage of an oxygen mask being placed over his face.
Jason insists that it wasn’t as big a deal as it was made out to be, saying:
I had a drink or two [the night before]. They said I was dehydrated, but it wasn’t anything more than what I was used to. To me, it was like, I can still function and work like that, but they don’t want to take the risk.
2. Jason Showed Up Hungover on Season 12 Also
On one of the episodes this season, Jason had gotten drunk after a day in the kitchen. When it came time to cook in the morning, Jason was very late and very hungover. This time, however, he was not taken out of the game.
3. Before He Was a Chef, He Was a Mechanic
Cooking wasn’t always a career for Jason. Lake Zurich Sun Times reports:
But before he got his start as a chef in Chicago and began competing for the top spot on Hell’s Kitchen in Los Angeles, Zepaltas was living in Lake Zurich’s Countryside subdivision, working as a mechanic. He always enjoyed working with his hands, which later manifested itself in other ways, like grilling for friends while they watched football games on TV.
4. He’s a Meat Guy
Jason is what he calls “a meat guy” and DNAinfo Chicago writes:
Zapaltas, a meat lover with an affinity for Charcuterie, said he worked at Uptown’s gourmet-to-go restaurant Real Kitchen, 1433 W. Montrose Ave., in the winter of 2012, and is a regular at the Driftwood Inn, an Uptown bar at 1021 W. Montrose Ave.
5. Jason Has Strong Opinions About His Fellow Contestants
Jason had a lot to say when it came to what he thought about his fellow chefs on the show, but he did stress that it was the pressure of the cameras that really got to them.
Zepaltas said a lot of the mistakes in the premier happened because the chefs “were under the pressure of the cameras.” “I don’t know why they were so stupid,” he said of some of his competitors. “It’s just the way some of these peeps are, they can’t hack it. And you’ll see some of them slowly get kicked off.”