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Geno Bernardo of Nove Italiano

This is 10 Things You Didn't Know About?, where Eater Vegas talks to the fine chefs of Las Vegas to get some dirt on everything interesting their lives. Know an interesting chef? The tipline is open.

Geno%20Bernardo_500%205-21-12.jpgGeno Bernardo [Photo: Courtesy]

Way atop the Fantasy Tower of the Palms sits Nove Italiano, Geno Bernardo’s take on Italian fare. This North Jersey guy with a northern Italian mother and Sicilian father learned his craft at the tender age of 16, cooking at Massimo’s, an Italian restaurant in his New Jersey neighborhood. Stops in Boston, New York City, San Diego, where he plied his sushi skills, and then back to Rhode Island led him to Sin City to open Nove Italiano in 2006.

1. I have a collection of about 200 menus from all over, and some date back to the early ’50s.

2. Every night when I get home I take Harley, my Rottie, for a run on my Sector 9 longboard. It is so much fun. She is starting to pull me way to fast. Last week got some road rash.

3. I worked a sport fishing tuna boat out of San Diego. I was a cook and a deck hand. Fishing is in my blood.

4. I travel to Italy every summer. Greatest place on earth.

5. I’m from the Jersey Shore. Not the TV show, the real Jersey Shore.

6. If I wasn't a chef, I would own a bait and tackle shop on Block Island, R.I. I lived on Block Island for two years. The coolest things about the block are there are 365 freshwater ponds, one for every day of the year. And the island is only seven miles by three miles. Great fishing, stripes.

7. I’m the son of a world-famous tattoo artist. My father had six tattoo shops on the Jersey Shore when I was growing up. Yes, he did all of my tats. First one I think I was 5 years old, a dot on my right hand. People think it is a birth mark. But it is the real deal.

8. I enjoy playing golf at Southern Highlands. Jay Beckman, the director of golf, is my best friend. Yeah, I get all the latest golf equipment. I have a Scotty Putter.

9. I enjoy going to my local farmers in Pahrump, help planting and seeing what we can grow in the desert. A lot of guests don't believe that I have gardens outside of Vegas. But, yes, we can grow like everywhere else in the USA. Just a lot harder due to the weather changes.

10. I love, love, love Nove. It is my baby. I’m here everyday. I enjoy working for George Maloof.
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Nove Italiano

4321 W Flamingo Road, Las Vegas, NV 89103 702-942-6800 Visit Website