ST. LOUIS– A St. Louis native got chopped in the first round of the Food Network show Chopped last night. Nico Shumpert recently left St. Louis for Atlanta where he is hoping to grow his work as a private chef.
Schumpert says even though he was chopped he appreciates all the support he got from people in St. Louis. He says he got tons of texts after he got cut with friends telling him he should have at least made it to the second round.
On the show, Schumpert and the three other contestants had to create an appetizer in the first round. They had to use a strawberry cheesecake milkshake, frozen french fries, thai basil, and meatloaf mix.
Schumpert wanted to make gnocchi with the frozen french fries. He threw them in the mixer but they weren’t working well so he decided to form it into a tater tot.
He then decided to make a slider with the meatloaf mix and create a cream using the strawberry topping from the shake and the basil.
One judge said his use of toasting the bun in butter was a pro move. While another judge liked the cream sauce, another thought it needed more flavor.
Ultimately the judges agreed to ‘chop’ him in the first round saying they thought his dish needed a dipping sauce for the tater tots.
Schumpert is a 2007 graduate from Pattonville High School and has been called a Rising Star in Feast Magazine in 2021.
During the pandemic, Schumpert said his work as a private chef took off. Now he’s hoping to grow that business in Atlanta. He is still pairing with Kaldi’s on some projects.