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Mark LoRusso to replace chef Bartolotta at Wynn Las Vegas

Paul Bartolotta, executive chef of Bartolotta Ristorante di Mare, which opened with Wynn Las Vegas in 2005, will be replaced early next year by Mark LoRusso, the resort announced Wednesday.

Wynn officials said it was a mutual decision.

“It has been a staple of the Wynn culinary philosophy that the chef whose name is on the menu is the person who actually prepares your meal,” a company press release said. “Full-time, resident chefs are essential to deliver on the expectation and promise of a Wynn dining experience.”

A company representative said there would be no further comment, and it was unclear whether the restaurant’s name would change to reflect the change in chef.

Bartolotta Ristorante di Mare is known for importing fish fresh from the Mediterranean.

Paul Bartolotta won James Beard Foundation awards twice, being named Best Chef: Southwest in 2009 for his restaurant at Wynn and Best Chef: Midwest in 1994 for Spiaggia in Chicago. Of Italian descent, he studied in Italy extensively, and returned often in recent years for research purposes. He has been a guest chef on “The Talk,” “Jimmy Kimmel Live” and “The Today Show” and was a celebrity guest judge on “Top Chef.”

LoRusso has a long history with Wynn Las Vegas, most recently serving as executive chef of Botero at Encore.

Contact Heidi Knapp Rinella at Hrinella@reviewjournal.com. Find more of her stories at www.reviewjournal.com and bestoflasvegas.com and follow @HKRinella on Twitter.

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