Season 5: Michael Proietti

Where are you living and working now?

I am still living on City Island in the Bronx, but I have recently moved out of my mom's house and am living alone. Baby steps, honey.

What have you been up to since FNS?

There is so much going on. First, I am still writing on my blog at www.mvpchef.blogspot.com. I am now the F&B director of the hotel I worked for during the show. I plan on opening a restaurant in the next year. I am also doing cooking classes and demos in the NYC area. Oh, and keep your eyes open for my cookbook!

What was your favorite thing about being on FNS? And your least favorite?

Well, I think my favorite thing was cooking for all those great people, not just the chefs but all the people who loved my food and were so nice. I think my least favorite was the stress. Yes, it was the stress.

Do you keep in touch with other finalists?

Hell yes! Me and Brett talk a lot and Katie is my girl. Jeff and I always e-mail each other and the same goes for my L.A. lover, Debbie. But I have spoken to everyone since the show and love them all ... xoxo, lovers.

What was the funniest/coolest/weirdest (or worst!) incident to happen behind the scenes?

OMG, I can't tell you that. Ask Brett.

How did being on FNS affect your culinary career?

It pushed me to the next level in my career, and still opens up great doors for me.

What advice would you offer the next round of finalists?

RUN! Lmao, no, um, just have a good time. Be who you are and hold on! It's a trip.

When you look back, what would you have done differently?

Nothing. I am proud of everything I cooked and the way I handled myself. It was a good time, and I would not change a thing.

Do people recognize you from being on the show?

OMG, all the time. It's kind of weird, but it's so cool and such an honor.

What was the greatest lesson you learned from your time on FNS?

Cameras are evil, and I've got a face for radio. Lmao. I think I learned that I am good at what I do, and I can make the best of any situation.

What's your current favorite recipe or signature dish?

At the moment it's my Mac and Cheese recipe. OMG, it's all I eat.

Anything else?

I just want to thank all the crew from NFNS, Season 5. They are the best and made being locked in a room for days on end fun, and for that I love you guys! Thank you, thank you, thank you. And just remember when you cook the sky is the limit, from Bed-Stuy to Bangkok." xoxo, MVP