Top Chef Nina
When you live in the Caribbean many places can claim you as their own, but Top Chef Season 11 features a contestant from Saint Lucia, Ms Nina Compton. The popular food show Top Chef took its talents (and competition) to New Orleans for the latest season, and Miami will be represented by Chef Compton who is the daughter of the late Sir John Compton, former prime minister of St Lucia and also Chef de Cuisine of Scarpetta at the Fontainebleau Hotel.
Compton has trained in French, Italian and Caribbean kitchens. As the number two at Scarpetta, she works closely with chef/owner Scott Conant, who oversees several locations of Scarpetta across the country. From Bravo’s press release: “A self-proclaimed ‘Gnocchi Queen,’ Nina always keeps Maldon salt, good olive oil, lemon, calabrese chilies, and either pancetta or guanciale on hand.”
A graduate of The Culinary Institute of America (2001) in Hyde Park, New York, Chef Compton began her professional journey at Daniel in New York City, working and learning alongside Daniel Boulud and Alex Lee. After moving to Miami, she had the privilege of working alongside South Florida’s top toques including Norman Van Aken at Norman’s and Philippe Ruiz at Palme d’Or. Eventually, Chef Compton was recruited to Casa Casuarina, a private club and intimate boutique hotel in Miami Beach where she rose from Sous Chef to Executive Chef of the exclusive, highlyacclaimed restaurant. The excitement behind the renovation of the famed Fontainebleau Miami Beach in 2008, combined with the chance to work with Scott Conant at Scarpetta, lured Chef Compton to the iconic property where she joined the pre-opening team as Sous Chef. For over three years she continued to excel as a chef, becoming a key member of Scarpetta’s culinary team.
Top Chef features regular hosts and judges: Padma Lakshmi, Emeril Lagasse, Tom Colicchio, Gail Simmons and Hugh Acheson. Appearances are expected by New Orleans chefs like John Besh, Leah Chase and Paul Prudhomme; as well as guest spots by Jon Favreau, Lea Michele, Anthony Mackie, Questlove, Jacques Pepin and David Chang.
SHE will be watching Chef Nina Compton’s achievements and I’m sure all our readers will be rooting for her. You go girl!