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Casey Shiller Competes on Food Network's "Cupcake Wars" Sunday

April 30, 2013

Casey Shiller  
Casey Shiller

Will the third try be a charm?

Casey Shiller, St. Louis Community College's award-winning chef educator and coordinator of baking and pastry arts in  the Hospitality Studies program, will compete with his Jilly’s Cupcake Bar & Café cohort Dana Holland on the next episode of the Food Network’s “Cupcake Wars.”

The show will air at 7 p.m. on Sunday, May 5, and features the South Beach Wine and Food Festival.

Shiller and Holland won the grand prize in June 2011, and competed in a battle of champions in January 2012. They were asked to return for this special showdown. They will be pitted against three other competitors, all vying for the $10,000 grand prize.

Shiller is the executive pastry chef at Jilly’s Cupcake Bar & Café in University City.

“I am extremely excited to represent St. Louis on a national stage once again," he said. "Bringing the spotlight on the amazing local food scene we are a part of is thrilling. As usual, the competition was incredibly nerve-wracking. The clock is brutal, and we have so much work to do in such a short period of time. It's tense.”

Because it was their third appearance, they felt good about using what they learned from the previous experience.

“Going into the third battle, we felt we had to pull out all of the stops to create amazing cupcakes and blow the judges away," Shiller said. "When we learned the theme revolved around the Miami area, we knew the flavor combinations we could create were right in our wheelhouse.

Learning that the featured theme was the South Beach Wine and Food Festival, Shiller said they knew they had their work cut out for them.

"The event would be teeming with high-profile chefs," Shiller noted. "Being trained chefs ourselves, we wanted to be part of the event as a featured culinarian, not a spectator.”

Shiller was honored as National Chef Educator of the Year by the American Culinary Federation last July, and also St. Louis Chef of the Year by the St. Louis Chefs de Cuisine Association in November.

He was named the Forest Park campus’ Co-Teacher of the Year in 2010 and received Missouri Community College Association’s Excellence in Teaching Award in 2011. He has been at STLCC since 2005 and teaches a range of classes from cake decorating to food science to contemporary plated desserts.

A native St. Louisan, Shiller’s 15-year culinary career includes stints at Trump’s casinos and hotels in Atlantic City and restaurants in Florida, Chicago and upstate New York. He earned a bachelor’s degree in pastry arts and baking from Johnson and Wales University in Providence, R.I.

Shiller and his wife, Anne, live in St. Louis.