‘Top Chef’ Fan Favorite to speak to Nicholls culinary students

The Chef John Folse Culinary Institute at Nicholls State University will continue its Empowered Women Chefs Series with guest Chef Nina Compton, fan favorite/runner-up from Top Chef: Season 11 New Orleans and owner of Compère Lapin in New Orleans, at 1 p.m. Monday, May 9 in the Ledet Culinary Arts Building.

Launched last month, the Empowered Women Chefs Series is a new lecture and culinary demonstration series focused on encouraging women to pursue successful careers in the male-dominated restaurant industry. Funded by the Carl Perkins Non-Traditional Occupations Grant, the seven-part series provides inspiration and guidance for females aspiring to work in the restaurant industry, where only 21 percent of the jobs are held by women. With the Chef John Folse Culinary Institute’s student body at approximately 65 percent female, the series hopes to provide aspiring women chefs with industry role models and with tips for navigating challenges in the industry.

The series kicked off April 18 with guest Chef Jacqueline Blanchard, owner of Coutelier NOLA, and will continue on Monday, May 9 with Chef Nina Compton. A St. Lucia native with a unique mix of Caribbean, French and Italian influences, Compton began her culinary journey working under renowned Chef Daniel Boulud at Daniel in New York City and acclaimed Chef Scott Conant at Scarpetta in Miami. Compton competed on Season 11 Top Chef: New Orleans, finishing as runner-up and fan favorite. She fell in love with the city, and in June 2015, she opened her own restaurant, Compère Lapin, in New Orleans.

In addition to discussing her career path, Compton will demonstrate how to prepare Ricotta Gnocchi with Tomato Confit at 1 p.m. in the demonstration kitchen in the Ledet Culinary Arts Building on the Nicholls campus. Seating is limited, so reservations are required by calling 985-493-2700.

By: Nicholls State University