With scene-stealing roles in A.P. Bio, Documentary Now!, and Wine Nation, Paula Pell is having one hell of a yr. The comic labored on SNL for almost 20 years earlier than shifting in entrance of the digicam, and now she’s buying and selling barbs on display with a few of her 30 Rock colleagues in Netflix’s new wine-soaked comedy. As Val, an vintage retailer proprietor with a penchant for high-tech vibrators, Pell will get lots of the funniest strains, and the scenes the place she’s making an attempt to court docket a younger artist performed by Maya Erskine (of Pen15 fame) are a number of the most oddly shifting moments within the movie. After watching her breakout efficiency within the new Amy Poehler-directed comedy, Eater thought Pell can be the proper match for The Well-known Authentic Eater Questionnaire, an interview collection the place we ask probably the most thrilling individuals in Hollywood about their eating habits.
Welcome to The Well-known Authentic Eater Questionnaire. What was the very last thing that you simply ate? Final night time I had a scrumptious meal of halibut, broccolini, and this actually good shrimp that was in a sea of chile oil. I’m a pescatarian, in order that was heaven for me.
What was the very last thing you drank? Espresso this morning. I often drink solely iced espresso, however they didn’t have it [at the hotel] so I’ve been consuming sizzling espresso, which at all times appears to jack me up a bit of extra, I don’t know why.
When and the place was the final time you had a sizzling canine? I eat sizzling canine on a regular basis — vegetarian canine. There’s such one… I don’t suppose I can keep in mind the title, however they’ve it at Gelson’s. It’s such , fancy veggie sizzling canine, and I reduce it up and eat it in a bowl with sauerkraut and Dijon mustard. That’s my lunch jam.
What’s your favourite, however admittedly unusual meals mixture? I really like ketchup on eggs, however I don’t know if that’s too unusual. I used to eat common Cheerios in milk with Hershey’s syrup. I additionally simply love salt. I’m a really salty particular person and I’ve low blood strain. The physician mentioned that’s most likely why I really like salt, as a result of it raises your blood strain. However I really like salty issues like olives, pickles, and crackers. I’m additionally a creature of behavior, and I really like selfmade pasta with an unbelievable crimson sauce. I’ve discovered a few locations in LA that serve my favourite sort of crimson sauce and I’ll simply crave that.
What are a few of your favourite crimson sauce locations in LA? Properly, my favourite favourite place is Madeo, which I used to dwell a block from. They moved as a result of they had been renovating that constructing, so now they’re in Beverly Hills and I haven’t been to that new one. However once I was single and in between relationships, I rented a home in West Hollywood and would stroll there simply three to 4 occasions per week and go sit on the bar and have a meal, both fish or pasta, with glass of wine, and be in my absolute heaven.
Is there any meals that you simply love that you simply didn’t strive till later in life? You realize, I didn’t strive sushi till I used to be in my late 20s, and now I completely love sushi. However one factor that I by no means favored, weirdly, though I ate fish a lot, was smoked salmon. After which once I lived on the Decrease East Facet for some time in New York, years after I had lived there for SNL, I used to go to… I can’t consider the title of anywhere, however one of many very iconic…
Russ & Daughters? Sure, Russ & Daughters, thanks. I might eat lox there and I turned so obsessive about smoked salmon. So now I’ll order that, which I by no means used to, and I at all times take into consideration how your palate does change. You suppose you’re not going to love one thing, and then you definitely strive it. I had this bizarre aversion once I was younger to cooked celery, like if something had cooked celery in it, I might take all of it out and go away a bit of pile, and I really like celery in issues now. It’s simply bizarre how you’ve got that one factor in your head the place you’re like, “That’s what I don’t like.”
I learn that Wine Nation is predicated on a trip or two that the solid took in actual life. Did any of your favourite moments make it on display? Properly, sure, fairly a number of issues occurred that occur in that film. We had a whole lot of enjoyable dancing, and I could have been topless sooner or later. I undoubtedly did “Dildo Claus” in actual life the place I gave everybody vibrators that had been very costly — excessive finish ones, very excessive tech. They’re all Bluetooth! I don’t know what which means, I simply made that up. You’ll be able to obtain the climate and information on them? Anyway, I’ve a whole lot of photographs and movies from the true journey and once I take a look at them, it’s wonderful how a lot they captured the enjoyable components of us there.
You’ve gotten the funniest strains within the film. Was that you simply riffing? Or was it within the script? Quite a lot of it was within the script, after which as a result of they trusted us and Amy knew all of our strikes, she would depart a bit of respiration room. Nevertheless it wasn’t like “let’s all go and improvise,” it was a really well-written script, so we may simply play. Towards the top whenever you do a pair takes, you knew that you would blow it out a bit of bit and add a unique ending, or say one thing on the best way out. I’m not often the one which’s being simply the actor, so it’s simply actually enjoyable to be handed a “stunning meal” in consuming phrases.
My favourite scenes are whenever you’re on the wineries and also you’re all oblivious to the tasting notes. Does that replicate your method to wine? It’s so humorous. As a result of I began going to Madeo and different Italian eating places, I bought extra of a palate for good wine, and realized that you simply really feel so significantly better the subsequent day whenever you drink good wine versus what I name “occasion wine.” It simply at all times nonetheless makes me snigger when individuals go on and on a few wine, and also you’re simply making an attempt to not roll your eyes, since you’re similar to, “I don’t suppose that’s true, I do know in the event you can style the diamonds that’s in it.” However then there’s some stuff that’s completely so legit, so I take pleasure in any sort of documentary about wine and wineries and the way they’ll at all times be an individual in it that’s calling out the bullshit but in addition speaking in regards to the magic of it, as a result of it’s a fairly magical factor.
In the event you’re going to purchase wine for the home, what do you gravitate towards? I really like Brunellos and Montepulcianos. I’m half Italian, and I similar to these sort of earthy, massive wines. After which I like French wines. I really like Gamay, however I simply don’t like candy wine, and I’m not an enormous jammy wine lover — I don’t love Pinot Noir. I’ll drink it completely, however I like Chianti, simply one thing that tastes like an actual, earthy, good wine.
Do you’ve got a common banquet soundtrack? Generally I’ll simply placed on my mixture of stuff, however a whole lot of occasions, as a result of everybody’s so chatty and you’ve got individuals over, I’ll fear about what I’ve placed on and in 10 minutes flip it right down to nothing, since you’re like, “It’s too complicated to have music on with individuals speaking.” Generally, you simply do one thing actually quiet and mellow. My fiancé is definitely a beautiful cook dinner, so I prefer to make a salad and make all the pieces look and scent fairly, however I’m not the one which’s creating the true meal expertise. My girlfriend is doing that, as a result of she’s Cuban and might make some actually scrumptious issues.
I really like how the film introduces the thought of “DUI songs.” Had been the songs within the movie your precise secret drunk favorites? They weren’t, however they had been all songs that I do know that we’ve all most likely danced to as a gaggle within the workplace of SNL. They’re all actually enjoyable songs, and it was straightforward to bop to these songs and goof round with them as a result of they had been issues that carry us pleasure. Quite a lot of occasions at SNL, you had stress or full delirious exhaustion, and somebody would placed on a track, and like within the film Fame, we’d be dancing on the hoods of the vehicles.
Do you’ve got a favourite chain restaurant? I actually like Houston’s, and I really like the salad at Olive Backyard. On Amazon, I order the dressing from Olive Backyard and the croutons, and I get black olives and I make an Olive Backyard salad. I do know it’s just like the whitest lettuce, however it’s so freaking scrumptious. I additionally love a Filet-o-Fish with pickles on it. I prefer to name the Filet-o-Fish the “hook in my unhappiness.”
This interview has been edited and condensed for readability.

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