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Updated! Bastille Day Back of the House Brawl Goes Down

Steve Benjamin of L’Atelier de Joël Robuchon and Stephane Chevet of Shibuya goof off.
Steve Benjamin of L’Atelier de Joël Robuchon and Stephane Chevet of Shibuya goof off.
[Photos: Chelsea McManus]

French chefs from Mandalay Bay and MGM Grand brought their firepower on Saturday night to the Back of the House Brawl. In a first for the event, six chefs vied for the coveted PBR pony keg trophy in a mega-Bastille Day fight at Tommy Rocker’s.

The Iron Chef-type brawl usually pits two chefs against each other cooking on food trucks. But this one, organized by Jolene Mannina, divided six chefs into two teams to compete in winner-take-all brawl.

On Team MGM Grand: Claude Le-Tohic from Joël Robuchon, Steve Benjamin of L’Atelier de Joël Robuchon and Stephane Chevet of Shibuya. On Team Mandalay Bay: Vincent Pouessel of Aureole, Bruno Riou of Mix and Laurent Pillard of Fleur.

First the chefs cooked up duck dishes that were sold to the public. Half the money raised went to Three Square Food Bank. Then the chefs went to war, mocking each other on food trucks facing each other.

Each team was given a mystery basket of ingredients that included sunflower seeds, rice cakes, Slim Jims, red cabbage and baby octopus. Chef Mathieu Chartron from Restaurant Guy Savoy at Caesars Palace selected the ingredients.

The chefs from Mandalay Bay ended up cooking on the Redneck Kitchen food truck while the MGM Grand chefs did their magic on the Ben’s BBQ truck. Any food on the truck was considered fair game.

The chefs from MGM Grand created a red cabbage sour vinaigrette with a fricassée baby octopus, seasoned sunflower seeds, popcorn cakes and a jerky beef. The chefs from Mandalay Bay cooked up a lettuce wrapped in red cabbage slaw with a spicy coulis and used the rice cake as a risotto and the Slim Jim as a chorizo with baby octopus. They “happened” to find a giant white truffle that he used on the top.

Jim Begley from Las Vegas Weekly, Al Mancini from CityLife, food and beverage director Sebastien Silvestri from the Venetian and Palazzo, Mannina and yours truly served as judges for the event. As the winner was about to be announced, fans of each side chanted the respective names of the property and a vuvuzela sounded with French flags waving.

The winner? The chefs at MGM Grand. Benjamin even kissed the PBR Trophy after the win.

Updated: "It was a great night. The chefs were happy. The bar made money. The food trucks killed it and we raised $700 for Three Square in one hour," Mannina says. "Not bad."

Next up for the BOH Brawl, another brawl scheduled for Aug. 5.
· All Coverage of BOH Brawl [~ELV~]

Aureole

3950 Las Vegas Blvd. S., Las Vegas, NV 89119 (702) 632-7427 Visit Website

Shibuya

4774 Park Granada, , CA 91302 (818) 225-1560

Restaurant Guy Savoy

3570 South Las Vegas Boulevard, , NV 89109 (702) 731-7286 Visit Website

Joël Robuchon

3799 South Las Vegas Boulevard, , NV 89109 (702) 891-7925 Visit Website

miX

3940 Las Vegas Blvd. S., Las Vegas, NV 89119 702-632-7777 Visit Website

Joël Robuchon

3799 Las Vegas Boulevard South, Las Vegas, NV 89109 702-891-7925 Visit Website

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