Theo Schoenegger | Be Italian

By Shivana Maharaj
November 14, 2009

Photography by Barbara Kraft Courtesy Sinatra/Wynn Las Vegas

Growing up in the town of San Candido in Northeastern Italy, Theo Shoenegger was surrounded by an environment where, “at one point you had something to do with everything on the table. so if it was a mushroom, you went to pick it, if it was a potato, you grew it.” Chef shoenegger cites his mother as his greatest inspiration. A restaurant owner herself, her talent was unequivocally passed down to shoenegger. “My talent had to come from somewhere. The things that inspire me most are her creations – simple but incredible good. Iin fact, you could go to any italian housewife in any little town and have something you couldn’t do as well at home,” remarks the chef.

Shoenegger commitment to italian cuisine using local american ingredients caught the eye of mogul steve Wynn who called upon the chef to open the italian restaurant in Las vegas at encore. “Who wouldn’t answer that call. The Sinatra family pursued a restaurant in Las vegas and Mr. Wynn knew there was no other way to do it than at encore. There are not many places like this, I was greatly rewarded,” gushes Shoenegger.

Sinatra opened its doors in December 2008, with a menu that is inspired by the culture of Frank Sinatra. Italian-American food: veal parmesan, osso buco, clams Posillipo. Chef Shoenegger’s cuisine employs modern food techniques and flavors, anchored in the italian tradition of simplicity.

This is an excerpt of an original article. For more about Theo Shoenegger see the Summer 2009 issue of City Style and Living Magazine.