Exclusive Interview: Valerie Bolon of 'Top Chef 4'
Exclusive Interview: Valerie Bolon of 'Top Chef 4'
This week, Valerie Bolon was the second chef sent home from Top Chef 4. Her contribution to Team Gorilla was deemed the weakest by the judges, so this personal chef found herself packing her knives and heading home. Luckily – as a Chicagoan – she at least didn't have that far to go.

Valerie took the time to speak with BuddyTV after her ouster, and we got the skinny on those blinis and a little dish on at least one of her fellow contestants.

Read on for the highlights and the full mp3 of the interview.

Here are some highlights from the full audio interview:

Valerie says that the Team Gorilla blini concept was actually Antonia's, which is surprising considering how Antonia talked about the dish and Valerie's skill in her interviews. Valerie admits she does wish she was a bit more forceful in clarifying the origins of the dish to the judges, but she was trying to take responsibility for her role in executing the flawed blinis.

Valerie doesn't have a lot of dish about her fellow Top Chef 4 cheftestants, and says the rigors of competition made it difficult to really get a sense of who could be a standout. That said, she does say that Antonia seems like the kind who would “stab you in the back,” and Antonia's actions at the Judges' Table and in interviews could certainly seem that way.

She also gives us a peek inside those mysterious Top Chef 4 lockers, and gives up the scoop on her own personal arsenal of secret culinary weapons. For the home cook, though, she notes that the single best ingredient she can recommend is any one that is fresh, locally-produced and in season.

For more from Valerie, including what her future culinary career plans are now that her time of Top Chef 4 is up, listen to the full audio interview above.

- Leslie Seaton, BuddyTV Staff Columnist
(Image courtesy of Bravo)