Nikolay was born and raised in the Saratov Region of Russia and moved to South Carolina in 2002. He enjoys preparing for the Orthodox celebration of Maslenitsa. This is a holiday which is similar to Mardi Gras, occurs the week before Lent, and celebrates the coming of Spring. He has been participating in this holiday for his entire life, and prepares traditional food. He has taught these recipes and techniques to his children, who also help to prepare for the holiday.