Rick Moonen and Rick Moonen’s rm seafood at Mandalay Bay are proud to officially announce the addition of Anthony Fusco as Chef de Cuisine. Fusco is a seasoned kitchen veteran, having worked at Gramercy Tavern (under Tom Colicchio) and Harbour in New York; Mesa Grill and Restaurant Guy Savoy at Caesars Palace and DJT at Trump International Hotel. Fusco brings with him to Rick Moonen’s rm seafood a love and deep appreciation for pristine culinary technique as well as a well-educated perspective on sustainable seafood.
Executive Chef Rick Moonen is thrilled to have Fusco on board. “Having come up through other stellar kitchens in Las Vegas and New York, Anthony’s got the experience and the chops to not only cook great food, but to be innovative with fresh and new ingredients. We share the same philosophy on embracing sustainability, and he is a driven, dedicated cook that I am pleased to have on my team.”
Anthony Fusco’s love affair with food blossomed at culinary school. Every day, hands-on classes in kitchen labs continually challenged Fusco, keeping him interested in his work. Johnson and Wales University developed the talents that secured an externship at Mesa Grill in New York City with Chef Bobby Flay, who became an influential mentor throughout his career.
He continued to polish his culinary techniques as a line cook at Gramercy Tavern, a Manhattan staple in American cuisine. Working there proved to be another highly influential position. Under Chef Tom Colicchio’s direction, Fusco mastered the precision needed in fine dining, helping the restaurant earn the title of “Most Popular Restaurant” by Zagat Survey two years in a row. Months later, Chef Bobby Flay called on Fusco to serve as his Executive Sous Chef in Las Vegas where they opened Mesa Grill Las Vegas to critical acclaim.
Working in Las Vegas was an invaluable experience for Fusco. He formed a tight bond with extremely disciplined chefs who worked hard to gain each other’s respect. When it came time for Michelin three-star Chef Guy Savoy to enter the Las Vegas dining scene, Fusco came highly recommended as Chef de Partie for the culinary team. He worked alongside an incredible group of talented young chefs including Bravo’s Top Chef Season Three winner Hung Huynh. They each strived for new heights daily, continually pushing each other to become faster, stronger, and more precise in their skills. “I had never learned more from my peers or had more fun at any other restaurant,” Fusco admits. With his French techniques finely tuned, Fusco joined DJT at Trump International Hotel as Executive Sous Chef. The team of stellar chefs achieved a steady rhythm together, which earned them a Michelin Star in 2008.
After four years in Las Vegas, Fusco decided to return to New York City. He was reunited with members of his DJT crew to open Harbour in West SoHo in March 2009. During his tenure at Harbour, the restaurant received countless rave reviews from New York press and Fusco was invited to cook at the prestigious James Beard House. But for Fusco, Harbour was more than just about garnering accolades for his culinary creativity and technique. As he had become more aware of the effects of irresponsible seafood harvesting and consumption, he ensured that he and his restaurant were committed to sustainability in its seafood sourcing. This choice to be environmentally conscientious and a leader in promoting food practices to protect the health of the ocean led Fusco to be honored by California’s Monterey Bay aquarium in 2009.
Now as Chef de Cuisine at Rick Moonen’s rm seafood at Mandalay Bay, Anthony can continue his commitment to fine dining excellence as well as sustainable philosophies.
Anthony Fusco has a hand in every role of the restaurant. Unyielding in his pursuit of culinary perfection and dedicated to the staff that supports him, at the end of every day he stands by his credo: “It’s about being in the kitchen and getting my hands dirty – I devote myself to the craft because food is my true love.”
Learn more by visiting www.RickMoonen.com. Rick Moonen’s rm seafood downstairs is open daily from 11:30 a.m. to 11:00 p.m.; upstairs is open Tuesday – Saturday, 5:30 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. Reservations are encouraged and can be made by calling (702) 632-9300.