Las Vegas Sun

December 20, 2014

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Chef Q + A:

Eight questions with Kerry Simon

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Leila Navidi

A lot on his plate: Chef Kerry Simon, owner of Simon at Palms Place, is shown inside the restaurant. He also owns the CatHouse at the Luxor.

The Carnivale du Vin brought together many of the top chefs in the country: Emeril Lagasse, Wolfgang Puck, Mario Batali, Bradley Ogden… most of the big names were at the Venetian this weekend.

The Sun caught up with eight of the culinary heavyweights and asked them eight questions, including their take on their signature dishes, restaurant trends, favorite kitchen gadgets, and what they would have for dinner if they had just one last supper to enjoy.

Chef #5: Kerry Simon

How many restaurants do you currently have?

I have three: I have Simon at Palms Place, and I have CatHouse, which is the Luxor hotel, and Simon LA which is Los Angeles at the Sofitel.

What would you say your signature dish is? What defines you as a chef?

There's too many of them to say that one dish (represents me as a chef). There's the tuna tartare with lemongrass, there's the meatloaf, there's the mac and cheese, there's the crispy sesame rice with tuna … I started making pizzas. Sushi pizza and a carpaccio pizza…

What did you have for breakfast this morning?

I had for breakfast this morning fruit and yogurt, I had Synergy which is one of those Kombucha drinks, and then I had a latte with non-fat milk, and later I had a protein shake.

What is your favorite food-related trend right now?

For me, raw vegetables, I like that a lot. But I also like going back to dishes and trying to find the history of, like, pizzas, hamburgers, and those kind of things. The roots.

What would you have at your last supper?

Oh my god how can you ask something like that? I have a passion for food; I can't limit it. I'm going to eat a lot of stuff, I don't know. I'll have In-N-Out (Burger), I'd have a roast chicken, I'd have the Bobbie from Capriotti's, I don't know. … maybe it would be, like, the best sushi chef in the world doing, like, the ultimate dishes or something. But then I love Thai food! You can't ask questions like that, it's just not fair.

All right, well, then the next question, who would cook it, is also not fair. How about… a supermodel?

A supermodel! I like that idea. Yeah, that's a good idea.

What is your favorite Vegas-based restaurant (other than your own)?

My favorite restaurant in Vegas is Lindo Michoacan. The one on the west side. You know what else I like, though? I like the tapas place. I like Firefly a lot.

What's your favorite kitchen gadget?

There's a couple things I really depend on. I depend on a juicer and a blender so those would be my kitchen favorites.

Next Chef: Sammy Hagar

Jump to: Emeril Lagasse, Wolfgang Puck, Mario Batali, Bradley Ogden, Kerry Simon, Sammy Hagar, Nancy Silverton, Mark Tarbell.