MasterChef finished off Season 4 proclaiming Luca Manfé the winner over runner-up Natasha Crnjac.

The final showdown began with both contestants getting visits from their families. Luca’s father and sister travelled all the way from his native Italy to support him. Both Luca and Natasha had some time for tearful reunions, and then it was down to business.

Natasha and Luca have to cook and serve a three-course dinner. The chefs will have one hour to prepare appetizers, one hour to make entrees, and a final third hour for desserts, and they have to make three plates of everything – one for each judge.

The judges, Gordon Ramsay, Graham Elliot and Joe Bastianich, praised every dish from both chefs, and Luca and Natasha were neck and neck until the end.

Luca served a pan-seared foie gras, short ribs and a basil pannacotta, while Natasha opted for a seaweed salad with seared scallops, monkfish and a coconut pannacotta.

After a tough deliberation for the judges – Ramsay even wondered if they should call it a tie – they named Luca the winner of MasterChef. Luca is the first male chef to ever win the cooking competition.

Natasha took the loss gracefully, congratulating Luca on Twitter and taking the opportunity to promote her cookbook, coming out April 1, 2014.

As winner, Luca received a cash prize of $250,000, as well as a cookbook deal. Auditions are currently underway for Season 5 of MasterChef.

MasterChef returns Friday, Sept. 27 at 8 p.m. on Fox with MasterChef Junior.

Olivia Truffaut-Wong

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