Bloomfield 17-year-old Sanchioli is voted Best Teen Chef in America
A Bloomfield teenager is enjoying his second expense-paid trip to New York City, earned from his culinary skills.
Nathan Sanchioli, 17, placed first in the regional Best Teen Chef competition, held in March at The Art Institute of Pittsburgh's International Culinary School.
Later, he went on to win the Best Teen Chef in America contest. Corporate judges from participating Art Institutes across the country chose the national winner based on each regional winner's cooking scores and essays. Sanchioli — who made dishes including butter-poached shrimp on toast and brined chicken in a white-wine pan sauce — had the highest score.
He won an expense-paid trip to New York City, where he is touring the Food Network studios and enjoying fine dining.
Sanchioli — the son of John and Lisa Sanchioli, whose family owns Sanchioli Brothers Bakery in Bloomfield — also competed with other teen chefs in the Food Network's “Chopped” scholarship contest in May. He and three other finalist teen chefs competed in New York City for a $40,000 scholarship to The International Culinary Schools at the Art Institutes.
Though Sanchioli didn't win this competition, he says he enjoyed the experience. For the “Chopped” competition, he and his competitors did the Open Your Basket Challenge, where they got a basket of ingredients and whipped up a recipe using them. Sanchioli made a pan-seared veal T-bone with bacon, collard greens and buttered corn with cotija cheese. Two judges from “Chopped” — Chris Shepherd and Jamie Bissonnette, executive chefs of Underbelly and Toro restaurants, respectively — told Sanchioli to apply for internships with them later.
The recent graduate of Central Catholic High School has earned a total of $18,000 in scholarship money for his college career, beginning this summer at The Art Institute of Pittsburgh, where he will pursue a degree in culinary management. He hopes to own his own restaurant someday.
Sanchioli says he got his love for cooking from his grandparents, who made a lot of homemade pasta, along with the popular family bakery. But he doesn't just imitate what he grew up with in his cooking family.
“One main thing with cooking is you tend to end up developing your own style and not mimicking someone else's,” Sanchioli says.
He can't easily classify his style, because it's so variable.
“It depends on what you're thinking of on a certain day,” he says. “I would definitely classify it as my own.
“I think everybody's end goal is ... to own their own restaurant,” he says, pointing out that one has to know both sides of the business: the cooking and the business management. “Being stubborn and just saying I can only know one part — that can only get you so far.”
Art Inzinga, a chef at the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, has mentored Sanchioli, whom Inzinga says shows good skill in Italian cooking, and basic sauteeing and grilling.
“So far, he has some good techniques,” Inzinga says. “He's comfortable doing what he knows. I think what helped Nathan out was he didn't try to do what he couldn't do. He knew what kind of techniques he was comfortable with.”
Inzinga — a Bloomfield native and a graduate of Central Catholic High School — sees a bright future for Sanchioli as a chef.
“If he continues to apply himself as he has, I think ... he'll have a good future in the industry.”
Kellie B. Gormly is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at email@example.com or 412-320-7824.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Pirates’ outfield may have few defensive peers
- Penguins slip past Sharks, 3-2, in shootout
- Penguins’ Letang leaves hospital, out with concussion
- Sex-soaked culture faulted for fraternity house parties
- Hempfield infant fights rare disease
- NFL coaches weigh in on Polamalu’s legacy
- Researchers uncover details to help get GOP candidates elected
- Carnegie Mellon University’s Speck device monitors indoor pollution
- Norwin High School health teacher charged with selling heroin
- LaBar: WrestleMania 31 one of the best ever
- New Kensington resident looks to transform city