A New Era for Restaurant Guy Savoy

Introducing, the Krug Chef’s Table

guy-savoy-n-kitchen.jpgAll eyes are on Caesars Palace right now, the hub of this weekend’s Vegas Uncork’d extravaganza of gustatory delights. However, deep within that behemoth resort, one of the city’s tiniest dining rooms is receiving a huge overhaul.

The Krug Chef’s Table will quietly make its debut this weekend. Tucked inside the kitchen of Restaurant Guy Savoy, the existing chef’s table has received a makeover thanks to chef Guy Savoy’s relationship with the House of Krug Champagne. The small, square room, with its floor-to-ceiling glass wall etched with the Krug crest that looks out into the kitchen, features thoughtful upgrades lucky diners will be able to see, taste and touch. The room will host its first guest, former French President Nicolas Sarkozy, on May 10, and officially open May 12.

This is not the first change for Guy Savoy this year. The chef who so notoriously eschews change for change’s sake has shocked some colleagues by peeling back the layers on his two-Michelin-starred Las Vegas outpost (which earlier this year received a five-star rating by Forbes), revealing a fresh program that has included the creation of the fireside Cognac Lounge and a new patio dining experience, the only of Savoy’s restaurants where you can gaze upon the Eiffel Tower.

Krug Chef’s Table guests will be welcomed with a glass of Krug Grande Cuvée Champagne as they are seated at the table, which can accommodate up to six. Either chef Mathieu Chartron (a passionate, young Savoy protégé) or Savoy himself, when he is in town, will personally serve 10 or more courses tuned to the diners’ preferences. Dessert is accompanied by a glass of Krug Rosé. You may opt for Krug pairings to be served throughout the meal, or enjoy the wines of your choosing, both at an additional cost. “We make the menu around the wines,” Chartron says. Personally, I would stick with Krug.

As I toured the space on May 9, Charton showed me a copy of Le Dauphine, a French newspaper, which included a story of his father, Bruno Chartron, who just got his first Michelin star. “He worked 28 years for this,” Mathieu said, turning the pages. Just then, chef Savoy walked in, effortlessly dashing in a dark denim blazer. In his hands, a garment bag containing, I surmised, a gleaming white chef coat. “For tonight?” I asked. The Vegas Uncork’d bottle-saber kickoff photo required such things. He smiled and nodded deeply, then turned to Chartron for a quick exchange in French—a casual yet fascinating moment that is simply the business of the kitchen, something more people will soon get to see for themselves from the chef’s table.

Seeing and being seen is paramount in Las Vegas, though not so much for chefs, who tend to make their mark behind the scenes. The Restaurant Guy Savoy chefs will have to get used to a few more eyes on them. Throughout the roughly three-hour dinner, guests may use provided iPads to tune into the garde manger, meat and pastry stations by way of four cameras that are being installed in the ceiling; the fourth camera is trained on the spot from where Savoy and Chartron inspect and expedite everything that comes out of that kitchen. “You can see from the beginning of your plate, and follow [the creation of] your menu,” Chartron explains.

And don’t expect any wild Hell’s Kitchen antics, either. Savoy’s kitchen is comparatively silent, as the chefs maintain laser-focus on their tasks. Despite the fact that Savoy is arguably one of the most famous chefs in the world, with a three-Michelin-star restaurant in Paris and four restaurants elsewhere in the world, he is said to regard his staff as family. He sees similarities in the House of Krug. A video explaining his love for Krug Champagne will also be available on the proffered iPads.

Savoy initially solidified his close relationship with the House of Krug by installing America’s first Krug Room, a large private dining room set within the Caesars Palace location—too large, as it turned out, and too corporate for this gem in Las Vegas’ culinary crown. The new Krug Chef’s Table is itself a priceless gem. Actually, there is a price: A tailored 10-plus-course dinner (call 731-7286 for reservations) with two glasses of Krug will run you $500 per person.

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