Iron Chef America is about to go Greek: Taxim's David Schneider is set to go head-to-head with Cat Cora on the April 10 episode (10 p.m. CT) of the cooking competition.
Schneider was approached by the Food Network last summer and initially was reluctant to do the show. He would have take off a full weekend and doesn't really have the support to replace him in the kitchen at his Wicker Park modern Greek restaurant if he goes away. Friends and colleagues, however, convinced him to do it so he filmed it last summer. He actually didn't even know the show as set to air.
Schneider said he had fun on the show, but that he was definitely aware of the cameras. "I'm not a performer so it's a totally different thing and it throws you off guard," he said. "You wonder what they'll edit out and what they'll show and how are people going to scrutizine you. It's not very forgiving." He added that the staff was really cool and talked him through things so he wasn't left hanging.
This isn't the first time Schneider has had an Iron Chef experience. While attending Northwestern University, an organization put on an Iron Chef-like competition for amateur student chefs. Schneider competed twice and won.
While Schneider isn't able to reveal any details about the show, he said he'd do it again if they asked him, but competitive cooking shows aren't really his thing. "I've always been interested in television that talks about Greece, Greek culture and cuisine," he said. "Competition is fun, but I'd rather do something more educational and demonstrative."
David Schneider [Photo: Star Chefs]