Ilan Hall

Recent Role:

Season 2 Contestant on Top Chef

Born:

4/6/1982, Great Neck, New York, USA

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  • Credits
  • Biography
  • Long Islander Ilan compares his three years of New York cooking experience to 20 years in the kitchens of any other city. He is well-versed in the art of Spanish cuisine. The winner of Top Chef 2, Ilan studied cooking at the Lorenzo Di Medici School in Florence and the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park and Napa.

    Birth Name:

    Ilan Hall

    Gender:

    Male

    Birth Place:

    Great Neck, New York, USA

  • Trivia & Quotes
  • Quotes (11)

    • Ilan: I was chosen to win a competition because I made the correct decisions at the right time and I was judged by a panel of professionals who I and most people in the culinary world respect.

    • (His advice to future "Top Chef" contestants) Ilan: Go in with an open mind, because that's how you'll win. That's how I won!

    • (On why he collects vinyl albums) Ilan: Dance music just comes through better on vinyl.

    • (On living with the other "Top Chef" contestants) Ilan: Living in such close quarters with a group or practical strangers for an extended period of time can be tricky. All in all, everyone got along fairly well and most of us keep in touch.

    • (After hearing he had won Top Chef 2) Ilan: The second I heard the 'c' of congratulations come out of [Padma Lakshmi's] mouth this whole rush of blood went through my entire body.

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    Trivia (13)

    • Ilan did a charity cook-off against Top Chef season three winner Hung Hyunh for the GenderPAC (Gender Public Advocacy Coalition) event in 2008. Ilan was declared the winner of the challenge, which included such ingredients as Nestle Quick, Spam, and ostrich. The event was judged by Ted Allen and season two contestant Josie Smith-Malave.

    • Ilan has a blog on the show Top Chef over at the Bravo website.

    • At the Aspen Food & Wine Classic Ilan competed in a charity cook-off against legendary Chef Jacques Pepin. Ilan and his sous chef (and former Judge on Top Chef) Gail Simmons put up a good fight, but were defeated. Chef Pepin had nothing but good things to say about the up and comer, and said that Ilan deserved to win.

    • In a charity Top Chef cook-off between Ilan and fellow season two alumnus Sam Talbot, Ilan attempted to cook crab for Head Judge Tom Colicchio. But unless properly prepared, crab can explode, as Ilan's did all over Tom!

    • The decision to send Ilan on from the semi-finals of Top Chef was not unanimous. Host/Judge Padma Lakshmi lobbied to keep contestant Sam Talbot instead. Ilan's decision to use taro root in his Hawaiian feast is what made Head Judge Tom Colicchio insist that Ilan deserved to make it to the finals.

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