Chef Ilan Hall has been in the trenches--he won Season 2 of Bravo's Top Chef, and is the man behind the Gorbals's restaurant in DTLA, where his new show, Esquire's Knife Fight was shot some months ago.
The new show debuts tonight as part of the Esquire's launch, and will air Tuesdays with back to back episodes at 9p.m. and 9:30p.m EST/PST.
The battling chefs on Knife Fight have one hour in real time to plate, and wow the boozed-up, screaming crowds--and judges--to win bragging rights, and a crappy $3 knife as a trophy. The judges include celebs like Drew Barrymore, and Elijah Wood, and top L.A chefs like Michael Voltaggio, and Michael Cimarusti, as well as other local food personalities like yours truly--I will be a judge on one of the episodes on October, 8, 2013.
Chef Ilan Hall is bringing a party vibe to the stale cooking competition genre with a loose, clubby environment, where the cast, judges, and audience are well lubricated, and encouraged to get up close to the action. Hall started his career with Tom Colicchio, and has worked for Mario Batali's and Bastianich's Casa Mono, and you can catch his at such exclusive festivals in Scottsdale, Aspen, and South Beach, but tonight, he's taking a raw, stripped down approach to Knife Fight, in the bowels of his DTLA kitchen.
Hall isn't afraid of a good, clean fight--here's what he had to say about Esquire's Knife Fight.
SGLA: Who is the most dangerous chef in a knife fight, and why?
IH: I'd say it's a close tie between Octavio Beccera and James Trees. They're both powerful, polarizing chefs who are also big and scary.
SGLA: Can you name a chef you'd like cut down to size in a cooking competition?
IH: Bobby Flay. I'll slice the freckles right off his face (jk, LOL).
SGLA: Is there an ingredient out there that you wouldn't want to have to face in a competition?
IH: Definitely whole blowfish. I'm not precise enough with a knife and scared I'd kill everyone.
SGLA: What was the one thing that all winning chefs brought to Knife Fight?
Esquire's Knife Fight, Tuesday's at 9p.m and 9:30p.m. EST/PST, starting tonight, 9/24/2013