Sunday, December 9, 2007

Vegas' Hottest Chefs

Top 10 Vegas Chef as Selected By Us:

1. Chef Charlie Palmer
2. Chef David Burke
3. Chef Bradley Ogden
4. Chef Nobu
5. Chef Michael Mina
6. Chef Alessandro Stratta
7. Chef Wolfgang Puck
8. Chef Paul Bartolotta
9. Chef David Walzag
10. Chef Rick Moonen

Chef Charlie Palmer
Born and raised in upstate New York Chef Charlie Palmer is a true pioneer of American cuisine. At just the tender age of 24 he was selected to be the executive chef for the River Cafe in New York. A short time after he was awarded the three star award of excellence from the New York Times. This was a huge honour for Charlie because it opened many new doors. A few years after receiving his Executive Chef position at the River Cafe, Charlie decided that it would be a good time to open his own restaurant. He felt that he had enough experience and expertise to run a successful restaurant.After some thought he opened the restaurant Aureole and he carried the duties of head chef and proprietor. This is when Chef Palmer really started to stand out from all of the other restaurants in the area and began emerging his new style of cuisine. Many critics were interested in Charlie because his cuisine was so different but still “American” at the same time. Over the years Charlie was labelled as a true pioneer of American cuisine and also taught many notable chefs in America. Charlie is now running and operating many restaurants In America. He gathered a selected team of Chefs which he meets frequently to discuss different menu items, ingredients and of course the success of the restaurants. Charlie still feels the need to go behind the line and cook and feels that “there’s nothing like jumping behind the line and cooking with the new guy on the fish station for three hours, establishing a good rapport and having him learn to cook to the standards of my palate.” He is also an author of three cookbooks that are available throughout bookstores across North America.Chef Charlie Palmer’s Sterling Club in Las Vegas is the most private dining room that is exclusive to very few people. It offers patrons a choice of personalized eight course menu, a five course Degustation menu, a vegetarian Degustation menu, seasonal lamb, beef and seafood menus.

Some Menu Items Include:
Maine Lobster and Artichoke Salad - Thai-basil scented vegetables and citrus vinaigrettePan Seared Barramundi Filet - Citrus Braised Butter Lettuce, Organic Carrot-Orange Reduction Strawberry Lemon Shortcake with Mar De Bois - sour cream ice cream, lemon sabayon

Chef David Burke
David Burke is a New Jersey Native. He attended the Culinary Institute of America for his education of the Culinary Arts. He then moved to France where he had worked for many different Nobel Chefs. David realized he had a passion for pastry's and went to school in France for Pastry Art. Years later, David moved home to America to work as a Sous Chef for Waldy Malouf. At 26, David Burke was the youngest and only American to win the France's coveted Meilleurs Ouvriers de France Diplome d'Honneur. He then became the recipient of many other well respected culinary awards. As a Las Vegas icon, his career began there when he partnered with E-Brand restaurants to create the restaurant; "David Burke". Not only is David Burke a outstanding chef, but also an inventor, entrepreneur and an artist. Chef David Burke’s restaurant in Las Vegas called, was built to showcase Chef Burke’s panache for presentation and includes a bar and lounge, with seating for 50; a main dining room, with seating for 250; and space for up to 100 guests in the private banquet facilities.

Some Menu Items Include:
Pretzel Crusted Crab Cake – mango, poppy seed honey
Bronx style Filet Mignon of Veal – Yukon gold dumplings, morels
Butter Scotch Panna Cotta – curry cocoa jelly, meringue

Chef Bradley Ogden
Bradley Ogden was born in Traverse City, Michigan. His passion for the culinary world began at a young age when he decided to pursue his infatuation with food by attending the Culinary Institute of America. In 1977, Ogden graduated with honours and was awarded the student most likely to succeed. Ogden started off as a Bay Area Chef and moved his way up to an executive position at the Campton Place Hotel in San Francisco. It was when Chef Ogden partnered with Michael Dellar to open The Lark Creek Inn in Marin Country when the critics started to rave; Lark Creek was branded as one of the best restaurants in the nation. Following the success of Lark Creek Chef Ogden the opened up the following restaurants; One Market Restaurant in San Francisco, Lark Creek Inn in Walnut Creek and San Mateo, Yankee Pier in Larkspur, Parcel 104 in Santa Clara and finally Arterra in Del Mar. In 2003 Chef Ogden partnered with Ceaser’s Palace in Las Vegas and opened Bradley Ogden, claimed to be the ‘Best New Restaurant’ according to the very prestigious James Beard Foundation. Bradley Ogden is said to bring a little bit of Northern California to Las Vegas. It is a state of the art eight thousand square foot fine dining restaurant which can only be described as refined elegance and a benchmark for the food and wine that is known to Northern California.Chef Ogden has become widely recognized as one of America’s greatest chefs, with his philosophy being: “Keep it simple; use the freshest ingredients available and put them together in such a way that the flavours, colours and textures combine to bring out the best in each other” there is no wonder why he is admired and so well accepted in the culinary world.

Some Menu Items Include:
Fresh Monterey Bay, Pan-Sautéed Calamari - garlic butter, lemon, romano beans
Wood Grilled Whole Branzino - pine nuts, capers, bronx grapes, tea soaked raisins, lemon butter
Dark Chocolate Tart - Espresso Cream, Shaved Guittard Chocolate
Our Justification:
In order to determine Las Vegas’ top Chefs our group did extensive research online and in food and wine magazines. We chose who we thought were the top ten and then ranked our chefs based on the awards that they one. We divided the categories into International and Prestigious Awards, National Awards, Food and Wine Based Magazines, Las Vegas city Magazines and Rankings. It was here where we were able to asses who we felt we the three best Chefs of the ten that we chosen.

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