Thursday, December 13, 2012

All Top Chef Interview with Eliza Gavin, Continued

This is Laura Kluvo from All Top Chef and I'm on the phone with Chef Eliza Gavin.  Hi Eliza!

EG:  Hi Laura.

ATC:  Did you watch the previous seasons of the show?

EG:  I did sporadically. Season Two and Season Six religiously, but having my own restaurant and a family does not leave a lot of time for TV.

ATC:  Tell us about your family.

EG:  I am very fortunate to have a wonderful and supportive husband as well as a three-and-a-half year old son who is a great skier, great golfer, and an awesome kid.  While I was in Seattle, I wrote him a letter every day.

ATC:  Wait.  Can he read?

EG:  No.  Not yet!

ATC:  What did you do to prepare for the competition?

EG:  I looked at past seasons and thought about what I would do for those challenges, both the Quickfire and the elimination challenges.  I tested new recipes at the restaurant.  I worked on presentation.  I memorized recipes and ratios.  I did everything I could think of, I reviewed my own cookbooks.  There were a lot of notecards involved.  But honestly, there is really no way to prepare for this experience.  It didn't help!

ATC:  Did you watch last night's episode?

EG:  Yes I did.

ATC:  Was there anything that surprised you as you watched?

EG:  Let's see..I was surprised that they were so hard on Lizzie.  I tasted her dish and it was really good, so that surprised me.  Lizzie, Micah and I were way over in the corner, so we didn't see many of the other dishes.

ATC:  If you could go back, would you do anything differently in this challenge?

EG:  With the carrots, I was just trying to add some color to the plate - a little sweetness.  In retrospect I would do something like a watercress salad with maybe some Washington apples for a little tartness.  I still would have sliced the elk.  That was definitely the right way to serve it.  No question in my mind.  I might have done something different with the sausage.

ATC:  Who is your best friend from the cast?

EG:  Lizzie and I were roommates for a while.  She is great.  Once I got to the elim house I became close with Chrissy Camba.  We played a lot of tennis - and Tyler is a fellow Coloradan so we connected too.

ATC:  Tell us about your restaurant.

EG:  I have a small bistro in Telluride Colorado.  Beautiful Telluride.  We have 50 seats.  We do modern bistro cuisine so it is simple food served in an intimate atmosphere.  We have an incredible staff and wonderful support here in Telluride.

ATC:  Are you open year round?

EG:  No, we close in the spring and the fall.

ATC:  What is the most popular item on your menu?

EG:  Probably my sausage plate.  There are five different kinds of sausage on it.

ATC:  Yum.  Sounds like low-carb too.

EG:  Yeah.

ATC:   What are you working on now?

EG:  Right now we have just opened for the season so we are working on getting everyone trained - We have some new employees - and putting out the best possible food.

ATC:  Have you become a local celebrity?

EG:  You know, it is such a small town, I think half the town already knew me.  Everyone has been very supportive and wished me lots of good luck.  On Tuesday, the mayor issued me a proclamation, so that was really fun.  It was nice.

ATC:  Chef Eliza, we are almost out of time, is there anything else you would like to say to your fans?

EG:  Top Chef, although it was a challenging experience, I had a great time.  I met a lot of talented chefs.  It has opened a lot of doors for me.   I am doing more stages, including with Kelly Liken.  I am proud to have been a part of it.  Thank you to all of my fans.

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