On this week’s WORD OF MOUTH, we sit down with The Gorbals’ Ilan Hall, champion of Bravo’s Top Chef Season 2. After almost a year at his second Gorbals location in Brooklyn, he shares insights on Williamsburg clientele and how he ended up in an Urban Outfitters. We talk the future of food TV with Ilan, now the executive producer of Esquire’s Knife Fight. Plus, the struggle of turning this 4-year-old son into a bone-marrow loving foodie.


Top of the show, we take on the Greenmarket with Kerry Heffernan, founding chef of Eleven Madison Park, for a winter season seafood update. And to #WINEDOWN, Leiti talks with millennial winemaker Josh Phelps of TAKEN Wine on wine labels for his generation, plus—some Valentine’s Day picks.

This program was brought to you by Visit Napa Valley



Ilan on feeding his 4-year-old (16:12): “It’s so sad because when he was about a year old, he would eat everything. He would eat bone marrow, and in all of his baby food for protein we would mix ground lamb in. And then at some point, when he was about two, he was like ‘nope, don’t want that anymore.’ So now he eats string cheese, peanut butter and jelly—pancakes once in a while.”


Our audience question of the week, from @Erin_Fairbanks, about bar mitzvah nightmares and dreams (39:00): “I was really into playing guitar and singing punk rock. Except when you’re 13 you think that you look a lot older than you are and you’re not as fat and funny looking, which I totally was. So, I decided it would be a good idea to play music in front of everybody at the bar mitzvah and there’s a picture of me singing and playing the guitar. At the time it was my dream but looking back it’s more of a nightmare.”


Ilan on what he did after Top Chef (25:00): “I traveled the world. I spent money. I went immediately after to Spain, Romania, Israel, France, Venezuela, and the Philippines. The travel and eating everywhere gave me a better perspective on the world.”

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