Wednesday, June 20, 2012 | 4 p.m.
Chef Kim Canteenwalla is the man behind Society Café at Encore, one of the most versatile restaurants in the Wynn empire. The Canadian native has cooked all over the world, including as executive chef of MGM Grand, and was recently featured in the Great American Chefs Tour visit to Vegas.
Ingredient obsession: pink peppercorns
“I’ve always been obsessed with pink peppercorns, which are not even from the peppercorn family. They’re actually in the gooseberry family and can easily be crushed in your hands. They give off this sweetness and then finish with a little heat.”
Favorite spot at Wynn: Bartolotta
Canteenwalla has a few connections at his hotel, so he always sits outside by the water at this Forbes four-star restaurant. “Always multiple courses, and when that fish cart comes out, there’s nothing like it.”
Must-have kitchen tool: Breville Juicer
Canteenwalla has been big on juicing lately, and he’s got the svelte look to prove it. “I’ve done it before but not with the passion I’ve found for it recently,” he says. The Breville is easy to use and relatively inexpensive. “You can really play around with different combinations of fruits and vegetables.”
Most memorable meal: the fishing trip
“I’ve eaten at some phenomenal places, but one meal that stands out was a fishing trip with some friends and chefs in northern Peterborough (Ontario), cottage country, where I grew up. We didn’t catch a lot, and not great fish, but we cooked it with just butter and lemon and salt on a little Coleman stove. We were all starving, and it tasted really good.”