Geneva’s Courtney Lapresi Wins Season 5 MasterChef

"Im not just a girl wearing high heels, Im a girl who can cook too"

Geneva’s Courtney Lapresi Wins Season 5 MasterChef

September 16, 2014

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The Lapresi family celebrates Courtney’s big win.

GENEVA, NY- Sept. 15, has now been decreed as “Courtney Lapresi Day” in Geneva, NY, Mayor Ron Alcock announced last night.

Lapresi, a 2007 graduate of Geneva High School, was crowned the winner of season five MasterChef during a two hour finale on Fox last night. To culminate her journey on the show, family and friends gathered at the Smith Opera House to watch the final episode with her. Despite heavy rain and a faltering cable signal, nothing seemed to dampen viewer spirits as she won the title.

Not only in Geneva, but also from all over the country Courtney was feeling the love. She shared on her Facebook page this morning, “Thank you everyone for the outpour of congratulations, love and support.” She shared on her Facebook page this morning. “I am SO grateful for your well-wishes, and I simply canNOT wait to share my new cookbook with you. This is the start of a new beginning!”

A new beginning it certainly is for Courtney.

Among both fans and competitors, her background was brought up a lot during the show, maybe even too much. The culinary star started as a stripper at Deliah’s Night Club in Philadelphia, working to help pay off student debt. Due to this occupation, Lapresi was at the receiving end of a lot of criticism.

“Having garnered some extreme responses from fans and peers alike during her tenure, Courtney stayed true to who she was.” Joe Bastianich, a judge on the show, writes in his blog. “She chose to trust in herself when things got really rocky, and this came through in her cookery. Frequently exceeding our expectations, she worked diligently to earn her place as the top contender.”

If her cooking background is examined, it too may seem questionable to many. Courtney never actually had any form of culinary training before the show.

“A year ago I was cooking in my tiny little electric stove kitchen with my cat,” she says on MasterChef. Yet after a season of confidence building, the chef goes on to say, “I’m not just a girl wearing high heels, I’m a girl that can cook.”

And the high heels aren’t a metaphor, she really did sport a pair of Louboutins every single episode.

Courtney receives advice from a Master Chef judge.

“They had a sneaky little drawer next to my station with flats in them, but after making it through the first cook my heels were still on.” She told fans at the Smith. “I just kind of went with it from there.” Not surprisingly, about midway through the season, Lapresi garnered the nickname, “The PoshTart.”

And while many may have mixed feelings on, “The Posh Tart,” one thing should be agreed on; the girl can cook.

Courtney walks away from MasterChef with $250,000 and a cookbook contract. At this point, there is no telling what bright things Lapresi’s future holds. In the words of the MasterChef judges, “We will be seeing a lot more of this talented and determined young lady.”






Phoebe Moore is a Junior at Hobart and William Smith Colleges in Geneva, NY. Studying Writing and Rhetoric, she hopes to pursue some sort of writing career after graduation. Outside of the classroom she is a member of the cross country team and athletic leadership core.