GMG - Las Vegas Weekly

2017-01-12 - Las Vegas Weekly

Las Vegas Weekly

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You have fish and chips at your other restaurants here, but they're fancier versions. Is there a dif- ferent connection with this place and this food? From Blackpool to Skegness to every sh*thole in the country across the crappiest beach- es with the sh*ttiest weather in the middle of August or July, you were the happiest young guy at the age of 10 walking down a promenade over the beach across the pier with a bag of fish and chips to go. Those memories are so relevant still, so I suppose I've come full circle. Has your opinion of Las Vegas changed since you opened your first restaurant here in 2012? I think it never got the respect it de- served back in the '90s, because it wasn't seen then as a [restaurant] destination or some food capital. I flew my team over this week and told them to have dinner at Bazaar Snacktime with Gordon: Guy Savoy gets a rare visit from his protege. (Jon Estrada/ Special to Weekly) Meat; it's just extraordinary, re- ally beautiful. It's as good here as anywhere now, New York, Paris, London—and that's without all the glamour and magic that comes with Vegas. Chefs are coming here because there are no boundaries, no restrictions ... you have a passport to create. The scene is hot here. You've achieved so much, and yet you're still described as "the fiery chef" or something silly like that. Does that stuff get old? Listen, it's passion. If you were to mic up an NBA star and listen to them in the heat of action on the court, it's no dif- ferent. I'm never proud of the way I curse, but it's an industry language. I don't walk down the street telling my daughter to f*ck off and go to school. I'm just going to blame Fox for not bleeping me more. If there's one thing I learned based on my training and the guys I was lucky enough to work with, it's that if I f*cked up, tell me, and I'll never make that mistake again. So I'm going to tell them straight. And once you film 274 hours with 64 cameras, of course the editors are going to put the best bits in there. What do you recall from your first experiences with TV, and how has it changed the way you work in the food business? I was f*cking raw. I was like a devil with nine dicks. I had no idea what the f*ck I was doing, but I was also a man on a mission. I had a documentary crew follow me at the age of 32 [for the Boiling Point miniseries] that turned any light- hearted cooking show on its ass. But it was my attitude—I didn't give a f*ck, and I was absolutely ruthless. Today, as I've matured, I've become a little more understanding. But I'm just as demanding, because I have to be. It's a very selfish game, and then you have to be unselfish to teach [as a chef], so you wear two bizarre hats. You're the most selfish, obsessed perfectionist that won't tolerate any inconvenience, and then you have to be the most open, the most generous and the most unselfish in passing the message across. This industry has a downside 14 WEEKLY | 01.12.17 C o v e r s t o ry

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