At the Foxwoods Food and Wine Festival this weekend, we learned that David Burke (one of the event’s headline chefs) is in talks to do not one, not two, but three restaurants for the planned MGM Grand casino. The mulleted superchef, known for his showbizzy creativity, is far along in negotiations to do a David Burke Prime steakhouse, similar in spirit to his place in Chicago; a Burke in a Box fast-food place, twin to the one at Bloomingdale’s; and an as-yet-unnamed seafood restaurant, which is the most intriguing of the three. (Despite being a member of the Refined Meathead Hall of Fame, Burke’s most famous creations are his angry lobster and his pastrami salmon.)
Casino restaurants tend toward the generic, but with Burke, MGM Grand gets the rare celebrity chef whose fame is actually based on culinary charisma. The Burke in a Box burger isn’t just a good burger, it’s an advance on burger science. His steakhouse boasts meat that all comes from one genetic progenitor, a semi-divine bull patriarch celebrated in earnest prose and oil paintings. Burke is the perfect casino chef: a serious food artist whose gift for spectacle and shtick is equal to his talent.
Related: The Lollipop Kid [NYM]