Ramsay is particularly gratified to have success in Las Vegas, which he ranks among the world’s top food destinations.
“The vibrancy here is incredible. It’s a tough place to make it,” he said. “The standard of food is right up there now. You can compare it to New York, London, Paris. Vegas is there, which is so great to see. To have my own steakhouse and burger joint in Las Vegas, it’s a dream come true for any chef. Also it’s an arena for every top chef in the world, whether it’s Nobu, Guy Savoy, Bobby Flay; they’re all here. That makes us better. The standards are unique. The staffs are incredible. And the culture now is fantastic.”
To have my own steakhouse and burger joint in Las Vegas, it’s a dream come true for any chef.
Ramsay visits Las Vegas up to 12 times a year – “We have a house in LA, so it’s an easy haul” – and with each trip, it feels a little more like home.
“Most importantly, I’m very grateful for being made to feel at home here. Last night I checked into The Cromwell. I love that place. … Intimate, 180 rooms. Nice little oasis. The hotel is beautiful. This summer we were at a ranch 40 minutes from here, herding up cattle on horseback and that was incredible. We were lucky enough to start working with the Cirque du Soleil team and looking at all the athletes and what they are eating and what they should be doing in terms of food, and we had some fun with them, too. So, I like to get myself into the culture. I go downtown. There are some nice little restaurants there. I’ve seen some chefs move out of the city and into the local community, I love to see that.”
Ramsay has become a mainstay in the strong fraternity of celebrity chefs whose names and cuisine can be found throughout Las Vegas. But what happens when they all gather for Vegas Uncork’d, the annual foodie showcase?
“Uncork’d … there’s nothing like it anywhere in the world. I do a lot of festivals and I travel the world endlessly, and there’s never a weekend anywhere in the world that houses so many chefs and so many foodies in one place, whether they be bloggers, loyal clientele, celebrating birthdays… There are very rare opportunities you get to meet such incredible chefs,” he said.
“I always laugh because that photo shoot is hilarious when we stand on the red carpet. Everyone’s really nice and polite and shaking hands but underneath their breath they’re all mumbling, ‘Who’s standing in the center” of that photo shoot and every year and it’s always me, and I know they hate me,” Ramsay joked. “But I know the secret now. Turn up last. Don’t get there first, because then they put you on the side. So I wait until they’re all there. However, I love standing amongst all that talent.”