Luxe Life Blog
Counter Intelligence: Gordon’s No. 3; Garth on TV; Counting Crows at M
Hot off the grill! Even in advance of opening his second Las Vegas restaurant, a gastropub in the former space of Bradley Ogden in Caesars Palace, star chef Gordon Ramsay is expanding further on the Strip. Vegas DeLuxe has learned exclusively that he will open a third restaurant at Planet Hollywood next year.
The expansion for the “Hell’s Kitchen” reality TV rebel comes because of booming business at his Gordon Ramsay Steak in the Paris and increasing advance reservation inquiries already for the gastropub. Some reservations at GRS now extend three months.
TRISHA’S KITCHEN: Country star Trisha Yearwood’s new Food Network series will debut Oct. 20 and run for 13 weeks, and Wynn headliner and husband Garth Brooks will be making regular appearances to help cook and issue a verdict on her kitchen creations.
Her first season of shows with six episodes was filmed in Nashville, but Season 2 of “Southern Kitchen” was filmed at their home near Tulsa, Okla. Trisha, a bestselling cookbook author, vowed that if the programs were renewed, they would have to be shot at home because she’s playing proud mom to her daughters, with one in high school.
FOOD & WINE EXTRAVAGANZA: Expect the official announcement today of the full final program rundown for MGM Grand’s Oct. 4-6 Food & Wine magazine extravaganza hosted by “Top Chef” judge and critic Gail Simmons. VDLX has learned some exciting details:
There will be an all-star chefs’ Surfside Soiree at Mandalay Bay on the Saturday, with an extraordinary lineup of culinary kings and queens posing for the kickoff photo the Friday morning before the events start. Taking part: Susan Feniger, Charlie Palmer, Hubert Keller, Michael Mina, Rick Moonen, Julian Serrano, Jean-Georges Vongerichten, Jean-Philippe Maury and Joel Robuchon’s chefs.
The three-day weekend at MGM, Mandalay Bay and Bellagio is packed with great culinary events including a tequila tasting at Diego in MGM Grand with “Chopped” winner Christina Olivarez and a champagne and sashimi sabering with “Iron Chef” star Masa Takayama in his Aria restaurant.
CRITICS SCORE: I couldn’t get dueling Las Vegas food critics John Curtas and Al Mancini to confirm the news, but I am reliably told that their pilot for the Travel Channel has been picked up and that they’ve been given a series commitment. Think of the two completely opposite writers -- one an attorney (John) and the other a punk hair-styled food expert (Al) as a dueling Siskel & Ebert. Instead of movies, they battle over restaurants, service and food in U.S. cities.
Their pilot was shot in Chicago, and now they start hopping around the country. Of course Las Vegas is in their sights. John and Al join each year with critic Max Jacobson for their guide “Eating Las Vegas: the 50 Essential Restaurants.” I’m told that they are all feuding fiercely and butting heads over the decisions, but the next edition will be out in time after going to the printer at the end of next month.
NAME FIGHT: Lawyers for the new Public House restaurant that opened last week at the Luxor are trying to resolve the issue of the same-name Public House in the Venetian. Although the Venetian restaurant opened here first, Public House is a group from Philadelphia and New York who have operated its brand for many years longer.
Problem is, “public house” is a generic name and in England it’s been abbreviated down to “pub” from centuries ago. The servers at the Luxor outlet are hot, hot, hot, BTW, and even the gorgeous “Fantasy” headliner dancers also at the Luxor who attended the opening applauded the plunging blouses and thigh-high stockings.
LUXURY SPORTS: The new sports bar and ultra lounge Ainsworth at the Hard Rock Hotel opened complete with a DJ and ceiling chandeliers. “Peepshow” at Planet Hollywood star Holly Madison’s ex-boyfriend rocker Jack Barakat of All Time Low was among the VIP crowd for opening night.
Ainsworth is an amped-up version of the East Coast group with its flagship inside Madison Square Garden. I am told to expect wild themed parties for the football season akin to the dayclub rage.
WHAT’S IN A NAME? Hard Rock executives have decided that the restaurant opening in October in the former Johnny Smalls space will be FU serving up Asian taste treats. Not saying another word!
CULINARY STUDENTS: The Counting Crows with frontman Adam Duritz will entertain Sept. 28 at the M Resort pool with 30 of our city’s finest chefs for the 11th anniversary dine-around M.E.N.U.S fundraiser for our Epicurean Charitable Foundation. Broadcaster Jim Rogers will be honored at the event, which provides scholarships to students pursuing hospitality-related education at UNLV, the Culinary Institute of America and Johnson & Wales University.
The foundation has awarded more than $1.25 million to various local community organizations and more than $1.3 million in scholarships in its 11 years and salutes 35 new students at the event. Las Vegas F&B executives from hotels and restaurants serve on the ECF’s board of directors.
CLOSING DATES SET: Closing dates for Garduno’s and Little Buddha at the Palms have now been set. The One Group, who is taking over the properties, will shutter the Mexican restaurant Sept. 30 and the Asian restaurant Oct. 22. As we previously reported Aug. 24, Garduno’s will transform into Heraea, a ladies-themed sports bar, and Buddha will become Xishi. Both will reportedly open before year’s end.
Robin Leach has been a journalist for more than 50 years and has spent the past decade giving readers the inside scoop on Las Vegas, the world’s premier platinum playground.
Follow Robin Leach on Twitter at Twitter.com/Robin_Leach.
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