A Bountiful Harvest
Chef Roy Ellamar’s Beloved Farm-to-Table Restaurant at Bellagio Resort Hosts a Luxurious Chaîne des Rôtisseurs Celebration
Harvest by Chef Roy Ellamar at Bellagio Resort hosted on June 20 the latest dinner and celebration for the Las Vegas Chapter of Chaîne des Rôtisseurs, an organization devoted to fine food and wine whose parent body originated in 1248 and with the French Royal Guild of Meat Roasters.
Chaîne des Rôtisseurs was re-established in 1950 in Paris, France, and launched in the U.S. in 1959. The world’s oldest gastronomic society, Chaîne des Rôtisseurs has established chapters in more than 70 countries, with over 6,000 members in 130-plus chapters in the U.S. The Las Vegas chapter also hosted an extraordinary holiday celebration at Mandalay Bay last Dec. 13.
Representatives of Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits of Nevada were in attendance and involved in the preparation and presentation of the dinner. SGWS Director of Wine Education and Trade Development Joe Phillips, a Master Sommelier and Chaîne member, provided the wine pairings for the luxurious dinner at Harvest; SGWS Executive Chef Benoit Cornet created the pre-dessert and main dessert; and SGWS Senior Director of Special Events & Marketing Michael Severino serves as an executive officer—Vice Conseiller Gastronomique—of the Las Vegas Chapter of Chaîne des Rôtisseurs.
Patricia Streeter, a horticulturalist from the Bellagio Conservatory & Botanical Gardens, spoke at a reception at the conservatory for Chaîne des Rôtisseurs guests. Chef Ellamar answered five questions from The Las Vegas Food & Beverage Professional post-Chaîne des Rôtisseurs at Harvest:
How do you think the Chaîne des Rôtisseurs dinner went at your Bellagio restaurant Harvest on June 20?
It was a really exciting opportunity to be able to share Harvest’s farm-to-table philosophy with one of the most elite food and wine societies in the world. The entire group truly appreciated each detail of the dining experience, and it was a pleasure to cook for them.
How did you come up with the menu for Chaîne des Rôtisseurs?
I wanted to feature some items and ingredients from the current menu, as well as showcase one local farmer and the produce she grew specifically for this dinner. Claudia Andracki, owner of Desert Bloom Eco Farm near Pahrump, not only grew most of the food but also was in attendance at the dinner so that the guests could share the connection of the food and my philosophy.
The Vice Conseiller Gastronomique of the Las Vegas Chapter of Chaîne des Rôtisseurs, Michael Severino, really wanted me to share the essence of Harvest, and he loved having her join them for dinner.
What were you most nervous about?
Cooking for any guest can be nerve-racking. It doesn’t matter if they’re a member of Chaîne des Rôtisseurs or just a couple visiting—you always want people to love your food. I was excited more than anything to host Chaîne des Rôtisseurs because I was able to share my cuisine with a group who shares my passion for food.
What was the most time-consuming in terms of preparation?
The salad was actually in the growing trays that came directly from Urban Seed Farm. Those trays, along with trays of pea shoots from Claudia’s farm, were used as decor in the reception area. When the guests moved into the room for dinner, we brought the trays into the kitchen and cut them off and washed, dried and dressed them for the salad. It took a lot of timing to ensure that the salads were perfectly dressed and not wilted.
The chicken dish also was a labor of love. We had to break down whole chickens, separate the thigh and breast, grind the thighs into a farce with black truffles and then stuff it into the breast. Then we cooked the breast sous vide (individually vacuum-sealed bags in a controlled-temperature water bath) for two hours before searing them so that the skin would be crispy.
Are you working on anything new at Harvest?
We always have something new with the Snack Wagon Pop-Up Series. Each month you can expect the series to bring new chefs with new flavors to the table. On Friday, July 13, Executive Chef Jimmy Lisnard of L’Atelier de Joël Robuchon at MGM Grand will be putting his spin on the snack wagon.