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Aviano eats up the chance to chat with Carla Hall of 'The Chew'

Celebrity chef Carla Hall talks about using the correct amount of salt during a cooking demonstration Wednesday, Aug. 23, 2017, at La Bella Vista Club at Aviano Air Base, Italy.

KENT HARRIS/STARS AND STRIPES

By KENT HARRIS | STARS AND STRIPES Published: August 23, 2017

AVIANO AIR BASE, Italy — Carla Hall didn’t quite step out of the television and onto Aviano Air Base on Wednesday.

But fans got a chance to check her out on “The Chew” on American Forces Network in the morning and to talk to her a few hours later at the base exchange.

Hall wanted to meet troops and their families, and thanks to the magic of television — the show is currently on summer hiatus and repeats are airing — she was able to visit Aviano.

“We don’t get too many (famous) people coming out to Aviano,” said Danielle Kirchhofer, who had a few minutes to chat with the celebrity chef. Her 5-year-old daughter, Olivia, showed off her doll, though declined to have it in a photo with Hall, who spent about an hour signing autographs and mingling with Army and Air Force Exchange Service customers.

She then headed to La Bella Vista Club for a pair of cooking demonstrations.

Hall, making her fourth tour sponsored by the USO and her first overseas, said she doesn’t have any real ties to the U.S. military. And that’s one of the reasons she’s so interested in making such trips.

“Being in the food industry, you ask, ‘What can I do to give back,’ ” she said. “It’s a way of saying, ‘Thank you. I see you and know what you’re doing for our country.’ ”

She definitely raised some cheer for those standing in line at the exchange. Several of those who greeted her said they’d been following her since her appearances on Bravo’s “Top Chef” competition.

“We’re fans of both,” Yushica Walthour said.

Hall and her husband just finished a Mediterranean cruise and agreed to visit Vicenza and Aviano in Italy and then Rota in Spain on Friday before she heads back to the States and resumes taping “The Chew” next week.

harris.kent@stripes.com

Celebrity chef Carla Hall shares a laugh with Kim and Eliana Portale during an autograph session Wednesday, Aug. 23, 2017, at the Army and Air Force Exchange Service store at Aviano Air Base, Italy.
KENT HARRIS/STARS AND STRIPES

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