Viewers were left divided after the winners of Bake Off: The Professionals were crowned last night.
The chefs wowed the judges Benoit Blin and Cherish Finden during the 1920s themed week, delighting them with their chiffon pie as well as their enormous showstopper centrepiece.
However while some said they were positive the team had been set to win from the start, others said they’d hoped runners up Andrew and Raf would secure the crown.
One commented: ‘For me, these two have had it in the bag from the very beginning. They have been sublime throughout.’
Another added: ‘Mauro and Daniel winning Bake Off sadly very predictable.
‘As great as their skills were, Daniel was a total misery guts. It’s a television show, mate! For people to enjoy. Ellie managed it well.’
However another wrote: ‘Hmm not sure I agree with that, was sure Andrew and Raf had that in the bag.’
A third questioned: ‘How on earth didn’t Andrew and Raf win??’
Daniel and Mauro had worked together at The Landmark London for two years before appearing on the programme.
And the duo admitted it hadn’t always been smooth sailing for them, with Daniel confessing: ‘At the beginning we were struggling a bit to understand each other.
‘Sometimes if I get a bit stressed, he calms me down, sometimes he falls asleep and I wake him up.’
In the final episode, the judges said they were keen to celebrate all things 1920s.
Benoit explained the first challenge to the chefs, saying he wanted the contestants to showcase three different desserts.
He said: ‘You must reinstate the sense of glamour the desserts enjoyed in the roaring 20s.’
They were asked to make a Bake Alaska, chiffon pie and an intricately moulded set jelly dessert in just four hours.
With the Baked Alaska, Cherish said she was looking for ‘a beautiful smoked ice cream with soft and airy sponge and silky meringue’.
Meanwhile Benoit said the key was ‘the very fluffy texture in the filling which needs to be nice and set.’
Andrew and Raf, from Harwoods Patisserie, made a ‘sea buckthorn’ chiffon pie, while damson plums were the star of their Baked Alaska.
Meanwhile Mauro and Daniel crafted a rhubarb and star anise Baked Alaska, while a lemon and lime chiffon filling was the centre of their chiffon pie.
Annie and Subin from The Dorchester created a blueberry chiffon pie, while rose water ice cream was encased in a raspberry and lychee sorbet for their Baked Alaska.
After four hours, it was time for the dessert trolleys to face the judgement of Cherish and Benoit.
Annie and Subin were judged first, with Cherish and Benoit praising their jelly pineapple, as well as their chiffon pie.
Meanwhile Mauro and Daniel were praised for their appearance of their ‘lavish’ dessert trolley, but Benoit said they had put ‘a little too much meringue’ in their Baked Alaska.
Cherish was blown away by the chiffon pie, saying: ‘I love it, love it, love it. It’s so light, and then boom the strawberry compote just finishes it off.’
However Benoit said their jelly had been ‘demolded too early’, saying it was ‘a shame.’
Mauro said: ‘A couple of things didn’t go as we were planning. But at least the chiffon pie was okay. Overall I think it didn’t go bad.’
Andrew and Raf’s trolley was praised as ‘absolutely stunning’ by Benoit, but the judges said they were ‘disappointed’ in the flavours in the Baked Alaska.
And while Cherish said their chiffon pie was ‘light as a feather’, Benoit criticised their pastry.
The final challenge of the competition saw the judges asking the contestants to create a ‘stunning banquet display’ which featured chocolate and sugar work.
They were also asked to create a centre piece dessert which was enough to serve 80 guests, as well as two further puddings which would serve 40 guests.
Mauro and Daniel hand carved a chocolate sculpture of Louise Brooks, who is known as an icon of the flapper culture, for their centre piece.
Meanwhile they also created a lychee mousse pudding and Chiffon sponge purse.
Annie and Subin revealed they were making wearable masks for the judges, as well as a tower of rhubarb and champagne jelly panna cotta and a citrus pavlova, and a croquembouche tower.
Meanwhile Andrew and Raf staked everything on a radical interpretation of the judges brief, including a roulette table which they had bought, rather than made.
Andrew said: ‘We’ve treated the two desserts as the structural centrepieces and then a table scene in the middle. We’ve flipped it on it’s head a little bit.’
Benoit insisted it was the ‘closest final they’d ever had’, with Cherish saying there was ‘tension in the air.’
After seven hours of high pressure baking, the contestants invited the judges to try out their banquet.
Benoit told Andrew and Raf: ‘I really like the interaction of your showpiece but your centre piece had to be totally edible. The macaroons of the only edible part.’
However he said the filling for the macaroons was ‘absolutely gorgeous’, while Cherish said the other elements were ‘so flavoursome.’
He said: ‘I love every bit of it, it’s beautiful, well done.’
But it was Mauro and Daniel’s banquet table which really impressed the judges.
Cherish said: ‘Look at what you have put up for us, it’s so extravagant, it’s so flamboyant and this is what the competition is all about.’
While the chefs reunited with friends and family, Cherish and Benoit had a decision to make.
Mauro and Daniel jumped with joy as they were announced the winners, before throwing their arms into the air and embracing.
Mauro said: ‘We worked so hard for this, I feel 10 kilos lighter.’
Benoit said: ‘It was a tough decision but we are very happy for Mauro and Daniel.
‘They’ve done well throughout the competition and they’ve been brilliant.’