Celebrity vegan chef Tal Ronnen shares his favorite veggie-friendly delights at Wynn Las Vegas and Encore.
A collaborating chef for Wynn Las Vegas and Encore, Tal Ronnen helps maintain 12 vegan menus at the resorts’ fine dining restaurants. On October 5 at Wynn’s Lakeside restaurant, Ronnen—alongside Paul Zlatos, Lakeside’s Chef de Cuisine (and former personal chef to Oprah Winfrey)—will lead the Wynn Master Class “Conscious Cooking.” In this hands-on class, he will demonstrate some of the most popular recipes from his best-selling cookbook, Crossroads—named for his Hollywood restaurant, which counts Sir Paul McCartney and Ellen DeGeneres among its fans. “I feel very fortunate that I stay at Wynn for a week at a time,” says Ronnen, “which allows me the opportunity to hit up so many of the great restaurants at the resorts. But here are some of my favorites.”
Wing Lei, garden dumplings
“Wing Lei is one of my favorite dining spots. Chef Ming is a master with a delicate touch. The food is beautifully plated, and it has a lightness that is the opposite of the heavy quality some might associate with Chinese food in America. The dining room was recently remodeled, but my favorite 100-year-old pomegranate trees that Mr. Wynn brought back from China are still visible through the glass—they’re beauties. Working with Chef Ming was easy, because so many Asian ingredients lend themselves easily to plant-based recipes. And now Ming has taken these vegan recipes to a whole new level. The garden dumplings are my favorite: The dish contains five dumplings in varying colors and shapes. Each is filled with seasonal vegetables, and they are plated to look like a bed of flowers coming up from the soil—the dish is as visually stunning as it is tasty.”
“Sinatra has an amazing vibe that feels very classic Las Vegas. The combination of the Sinatra tunes, the décor, and the singular memorabilia—especially that wonderful photo of Sinatra with Mr. Wynn—instantly transports you back in time and makes you feel like you are dining during the Rat Pack era when Sinatra was king. I recommend beginning the night with the Sinatra Smash, a Sinatra-inspired cocktail of blackberries infused with Jack Daniels. The food at Sinatra is a refined take on classic American-Italian thanks to Chef Theo Schoenegger’s touch. Six years ago I started working with Theo on creating vegan versions of some of the classics. I love the Caesar salad and the almond-milk ricotta agnolotti with asparagus purée. Chef Theo also makes an unbelievable cranberry bean soup. It’s a seasonal item, so I definitely recommend getting it when it is available.”