Nico Romo, MCF
Culinary Executive Director
Nico Romo has directed Patrick Properties Hospitality Group’s celebrated culinary programs across four historic venues since 2007, crafting vibrant interpretations of classic French cuisine with delicate Asian touches and locally harvested ingredients.
Chef Romo was most recently named a Monterey Bay Aquarium 2014 Sustainable Seafood Ambassador – recognizing the commitment to ocean-friendly seafood and Lowcountry fishermen that shapes his seasonal menu at Fish Restaurant in downtown Charleston. He also attended the James Beard Foundation Chefs Boot Camp for Policy & Change, selected from more than 450 applicants nationwide to participate in hands-on advocacy training with a focus on sustainable seafood.
Among other distinctions, he hosted the 2013 JBF Award semifinalist announcements in Charleston, as well as more than 100 French Master Chefs and the French Ambassador to the U.S. during the Maîtres Cuisiniers de France - l’Académie Culinaire de France North American Conference. Past appearances include showcases with celebrity chef Daniel Boulud at Le Taste of France in New York’s Bryant Park, as well as the Culinary Vegetable Institute, De Gustibus Cooking School and his sold-out dinner at the famed James Beard House.
Chef Romo’s signature approach underscores an international career alongside leading names in the industry. The classically trained chef is the youngest ever to be awarded the coveted title Master Chef of France – joining an elite assembly regarded as the most highly skilled in techniques and traditions of the French culinary art. Chef Romo shares the distinction with only 65 recipients nationwide, and is the only Master Chef in South Carolina. The accolade is furthered by Chef Romo’s recent place among the American and Canadian delegations of l’Académie Culinaire de France, totaling 1,080 members worldwide, where he again makes history as the youngest US member since the renowned organization’s founding in 1879.
Born in Lyon, France, Chef Romo graduated from the Helene Boucher Culinary Art School in Vénissieux at age 19. He refined his skill under the tutelage of French Master Chef Patrick Henriroux at Hotel and Restaurant “La Pyramide” in Vienne, France, before rising to prominence among the United States’ finest hotels. Chef Romo’s career has spanned roles at Chez Philippe in the Peabody Hotel in Memphis, TN, and the Ritz Carlton, Atlanta, GA. Chef Romo opened the third location of B.E.D. restaurant at The Glenn, Atlanta’s first boutique hotel.
Now in Charleston, Chef Romo dedicates his time and talents to community organizations such as WINGS for Kids and Louie’s Kids, serving as team mentor in the annual Big Chef Little Chef Challenge. In his commitment to local farmers, Chef Romo collaborated with area chefs to spearhead two barn raising events that collected a total of $40,000 in aid toward rebuilding efforts.