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Award-winning chef makes move to James Trees’ Al Solito Posto

Updated May 4, 2021 - 10:04 am

Chef Steve Young is exiting Westgate Las Vegas to serve as executive chef at Al Solito Posto in Tivoli Village.

“It’s a pretty amazing acquisition for the restaurant, and I think it’s going to move the needle a lot,” Al Solito Posto’s chef/partner James Trees says of the new addition to the team.

Young, a veteran of The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas as well as both local Joel Robuchon restaurants, has been executive chef at Westgate’s Edge Steakhouse since 2015, and for the hotel’s Fresco Italiano since 2019. Under his leadership, Edge has moved beyond its popularity among the nearby Convention Center crowd to attract local and national acclaim, and secure the No. 1 rating on TripAdvisor’s list of top Las Vegas steakhouses. He calls the new position “a good opportunity to work with talented people in town, with growth opportunities and a real direction.

“The restaurant is already great,” Young continues. “I just want to kind of add my style and my creativity to that.”

Al Solito Posto (“the usual place” in Italian) opened in Tivoli Village in January as a partnership between Trees and The Lev Group, with chef Emily Brubaker running the kitchen. When Lev decided to promote Brubaker to a corporate position overseeing the development of new and existing concepts, Trees says, “We wrote a list of the chefs that we wanted to meet, and Steve was at the top of that list.”

The chef stresses that the food at Al Solito Posto will be “a different kind of Italian” from what he served at Fresco Italiano.

“I think that this is more of a refined Italian cooking, where it’s simplistic in its form,” he says. “I like the approach to what they’re doing: Sure it’s a chicken parm, but we’re going to make it the best chicken parm that it can possibly be.”

With regard to cooking in the suburbs, Young says, “I don’t see much difference between serving local crowds or serving convention crowds. When the food’s good, it’s gonna be good, and people are going to come back for that.”

Contact Al Mancini at amancini@reviewjournal.com. Follow @AlManciniVegas on Twitter.

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