Paul Bartolotta, chef of Bartolotta Ristorante di Mare at Wynn Las Vegas, received the James Beard Foundation Award for Best Chef Southwest on May 4 during a gala ceremony at Avery Fisher Hall, Lincoln Center in New York. Bartolotta previously won the 1994 Best Chef, Midwest James Beard Award when he helmed the kitchen of Chicago’s Spiaggia, which received four-star ratings from both the Chicago Tribune and Chicago magazine.
Bartolotta Ristorante di Mare, which received a 2006 James Beard nomination for Best New Restaurant, offers a simple, yet refined Italian menu that redefines traditional American notions of Italian dining. The restaurant provides exquisitely prepared regional specialties emphasizing the freshest seafood and homemade pastas in a bright and vibrant setting that evokes life by the sea. Each week, the restaurant imports 1.5 tons of seafood from cities that lie along the Mediterranean coast. In 2007 and 2008, BARTOLOTTA Ristorante di Mare received the AAA Four Diamond Award. The restaurant was also named one of the Best New Restaurants in America by Esquire magazine in 2005, and received Restaurant and Institutions’ Ivy Award in 2008, which was Chef Bartolotta’s second Ivy Award.
Established in 1990, The James Beard Foundation Awards recognize excellence and achievement in the culinary profession. Renowned chefs Cat Cora and Emeril Lagasse with actor Stanley Tucci served as host to the 2009 James Beard Foundation Awards ceremony. This year’s event celebrated “Women in Food.”