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Cronut creator to open pastry shop on Las Vegas Strip

A missive from Caesars Palace that just sailed over the transom suggests the Las Vegas shop of Dominique Ansel, the celebrated pastry chef and Cronut creator, is opening soon at the property.

As Caesars teased last November, some confections we can look forward to include Cronuts (natch), kouign amann (a Breton cake like a caramelized croissant), frozen s’mores, and chocolate chip cookie shot glasses filled with luxe Madagascar vanilla milk. (Have you seen the price of a vanilla bean lately?)

Ansel, a James Beard Award winner, served as executive pastry chef at Daniel when the restaurant earned its third Michelin star and a four-star review from The New York Times. In 2011, Ansel opened his first store, the eponymous Dominique Ansel Bakery, in SoHo with just four employees.

Ansel received the nod for best pastry chef in 2017 from the World’s 50 Best Restaurants awards. Food & Wine called him a “confectionery Van Gogh” that same year. In January 2020, the chef launched Dang Wen Li by Dominique Ansel in Hong Kong, and most recently, in July 2021, he opened Dominique Ansel Workshop, a croissant counter inside his pastry kitchens in Manhattan’s Flatiron neighborhood.

The chef also has written two cookbooks.

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Chef Alicia Shevetone, star of “Sin City Kitchen,” a streaming cooking show, is dropping by Zeffer’s Café in the Sahara Las Vegas on Sept. 16 for a six-course Mexican-inspired pop-up dinner with cocktail pairings. The evening also includes a meet-and-greet with the celebrated chef.

The dishes: shrimp ceviche verde amuse, chicharrones with serrano salsa, ahi tostada, birria torta ahogada, spare ribs with cactus paddles and a chocolate tamal. Shevetone also is the author of “Italian Cookbook for Two” and the founder of Dink Cuisine, an outfit that creates culinary experiences.

Pop-up tickets: $120, with only 50 to be sold; eventbrite.com. Must be at least 21.

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Chef Justin DePhillips, a veteran of Think Food Group from celebrated chef José Andrés, just made the move from Jaleo and Pigtail restaurants in Chicago to the head chef gig at Jaleo in The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas. Before Chicago, DePhillips cooked at The Bazaar in South Beach and Jaleo Disney, among other spots.

Eric Suniga, who was doing double duty as chef for Jaleo and for É by José Andrés next door, is staying on to oversee É. Suniga has worked with Andrés since 2013, running the kitchens at China Poblano (memories: duck tongue tacos) and Ku Noodle before helming the kitchens at Jaleo and É.

The chef also has cooked for Michael Mina (Seablue at the MGM Grand) and Thomas Keller (Bouchon in Yountville, California).

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Wynn Las Vegas continues its Master Classes with top food and drink professionals. On Aug. 12, executive chef Jimmy Widjaja of Wazuzu teaches students how to create slurpable ramen, from broth to noodles to toppings. Dim sum expert Sandy Shi joins to demonstrate the craft of gyoza.

On Aug. 18, Lakeside executive chef David Middleton demystifies fish and seafood for home cooks. The instruction takes place on Wynn’s Lake of Dreams. Details: wynnlasvegas.com/experiences/master-classes.

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The pink plops (you know the ones!), doughnuts and other pastries are heading east. Pinkbox Doughnuts, the Vegas-born doughnut brand, is opening its first out-of-state store on Aug. 13 in St. George, Utah. The new shop, per Pinkbox, offers a Utah-themed doughnut, branded merchandise, 3D sprinkles, a drive-thru, and a terrace with a doughnut table and an oversized pink doughnut statue (cue Instagrammable pink posing).

On the Side runs in Sunday’s Taste section. Email tips, questions or feedback to ontheside@reviewjournal.com.

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