Chef Robert Irvine is the latest celebrity chef to open a restaurant in Las Vegas.
Irvine's new restaurant, which is nearly 9,000 square feet, is named Public House and is located at Tropicana Las Vegas. It opened in late July and is inspired by the pubs that Irvine visited with is father in England many years ago.
Irvine is well known for his many appearances on the Food Network ("Dinner: Impossible" and "Restaurant: Impossible) and has his own television talk show (sort of like the "Maury Show") and his restaurant welcomes everyone, especially locals and military members (he got his start as a military cook). The dress code is fairly casual (you won't be turned away if you are in shorts) and even children are welcome. And if Irvine is in town (and he plans to be here often), you can expect to see him on the restaurant floor, talking and even sitting with diners.
“Opening a restaurant in Las Vegas has been a longtime dream of mine and being inside the iconic Tropicana Las Vegas makes Public House that much more extraordinary,” said Chef Irvine. “With this restaurant, I am excited to share my travels through food and beverage, and presenting guests with good food and a great experience, all at a reasonable price. Public House is all about offering something for everyone.”
Irvine's food is described as "comfort food with a celebrity twist" and everything on the menu is recognizable to the average person.
Menu highlights include poutine, Korean spare ribs, mixed Heirloom tomatoes & grilled ciabatta, a lobster roll, wild mushroom or prosciutto pizza, braised lamb shank, roasted blackened mahi, the fork and knife burger, shepherd's pie and, of course, fish & chips (Irvine is English, if you did not yet know).
The restaurant is also quite proud of its emporium of beer, wine and craft cocktails.
And he wasn't kidding about the prices. They are quite affordable for a menu designed by someone of Chef Irvine's caliber. Appetizers range in price from $10 to $19 (steak tartare); salads are $10 to $18; sandwiches are $15 to $19 (lobster roll); pizzas are $12 to $18 (prosciutto); entrees are $22 to $36 (braised lamb shank); and desserts are $8 to $11.
Unlike many other restaurants on the Las Vegas Strip, Public House's menu is an all-day menu. That means that the prices are the same regardless if it is for lunch or dinner. In addition, there are a couple of other things that set Irvine's restaurant apart.
Guests are able to give immediate feedback on their meals using a tablet and managers will step in if necessary to make necessary corrections. In addition, servers hand out special coins that are good for a drink during a future visit. The coins are based on a military challenge coins.
And, servers walk their customers to the door when they are finished dining.
Of course, Irvine isn't the first celebrity chef to open a restaurant in Las Vegas. At this point, it's become a question of who hasn't opened a restaurant in Las Vegas.
Andre Rochat was the first big-name chef to make Las Vegas his home. He opened his first restaurant -- Andre's in downtown Las Vegas -- 35 years ago. Wolfgang Puck (opened Spago in 1992) and Emeril Lagasse (opened Emeril Lagasse's New Orleans Fish House in 1995) weren't far behind. Now there are at least 24 celebrity chefs who have at least one and sometimes 2 or 3 restaurants.
Here's a list of celebrity chefs who currently have restaurants in Las Vegas:
Andre Rochat: Andre's Bistro & Bar and Alize at The Palms
Thomas Keller: Bouchon at The Venetian
Masaharu Morimoto: Morimoto at MGM Grand
Buddy Valastro: Buddy V's in The Grand Canal Shoppes at The Venetian/The Palazzo
Joel Robuchon: L'Atelier De Joel Robuchon at MGM Grand
Guy Savoy: Restaurant Guy Savoy at Caesars Palace
Nobu Matsuhisa: Nobu at Caesars Palace
Pierre Gagnaire: Twist at Mandarin Oriental
Bobby Flay: Mesa Grill at Caesars Palace and Bobby's Burger Palace at Mandarin Oriental
Steve Martorano: Martorano's at Paris Las Vegas
Michael Chow: MR Chow at Caesars Palace
Tom Colicchio: Craftsteak at MGM Grand
Steve Martorano: Martorano's at Paris Las Vegas
Todd English: Todd English P.U.B. at The Shops at CrystalsJulian Serrano: Lago at Bellagio
Hubert Keller: Fleur at Mandalay Place
Giada de Laurentiis: Giada at The Cromwell
Robert Irvine: Robert Irvine's Public House at Tropicana
Jose Andres: Bazaar Meat at SLS Las Vegas, Jaleo at Cosmopolitan, China Poblano at Cosmopolitan, e by Jose Andres at Cosmopolitan
Michael Mina: Micahel Mina at Bellagio, Bardot Brasserie at ARIA, Stripsteak at Mandalay Bay, Pub 1842 at MGm Grand
Mario Batali: B&B Ristorante in The Grand Canal Shoppes, B&B Burger & Beer in The Grand Canal Shoppes, and OTTO in The Grand Canal Shoppes
Wolfgang Puck: CUT at The Palazzo, Spago at Caesars Palace, Wolfgang Puck's Bar & Grill in Downtown Summerlin
Emeril Lagasse: Table 10 at The Palazzo, Delmonicao Steakhouse at The Venetian, Emeril's New Orleans Fish House at MGM Grand
Guy Fieri: Guy Fieri's Vegas Kitchen & Bar at The LINQ, El Burro Borracho at the Rio
Gordon Ramsay: Gordon Ramsay Pub & Grill at Caesars Palace, Gordon Ramsay Steak at Paris Las Vegas, Gordon Ramsay Burger at Planet Hollywood, Gordon Ramsay Fish & Chips at The LINQ Promenade