Chef Rocco DiSpirito always sizzles in the kitchen. But on the dance floor? He needed more seasoning.

The charming cook was eliminated from Dancing with the Stars with his partner Karina Smirnoff on the fourth week of competition.

Not surprisingly, Rocco turned to a food metaphor to describe his time on the hit ABC reality show: “It’s all gravy. We leave with grace and lots of gratitude. We had a wonderful time.”

Backstage after Tuesday’s live elimination show, Rocco also told OK!, “There’s a difference between my personal experience and what the judges saw. My personal experience is amazing moments. The only other time I’ve felt that elated is when I’m on a line cooking and dishes are flowing perfectly.

“I came here to have fun, not to add up points.”

Good thing, because the scoring didn’t go well for Rocco, whose Monday night samba with Karina only got an 18 from the judges. Even 82-year-old Cloris Leachman earned a higher score.

Although he “wasn’t expecting to lose weight,” Rocco dropped ten pounds while doing the show.

“I think he improved tremendously,” loyal partner Karina said. “Every week he was getting more comfortable moving his hips and with his arm extensions.”

Now the New York City chef will promote his new TV show on A &E and cookbook, both called Rocco Gets Real.

His fellow competitors will miss him. Sprinter Maurice Greene told OK! Rocco “has become a very good friend of mine. I’m trying to get some cookware out of him now!”

After bidding Rocco goodbye, the DWTS cast moves on to perform one of four new dances that have never been done on the show before—salsa, jitterbug, West Coast swing, or hustle.

Next week, look for Cody Linley to dance the jitterbug with partner Julianne Hough and Maurice and Cloris to dance the salsa with their respective pros, Cheryl Burke and Corky Ballas.

Lance Bass and partner Lacey Schwimmer will do West Coast swing, which might give them an edge because she’s a champion in that dance. “I’m excited to learn from the master,” Lance said.

By Carole Glines

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