"I've cooked for anybody who's anybody," says the Italian chef Enzo Febbraro. "Imagine presidents, kings, queens, actors, actresses--you name it. And, as you can see, I'm very humble about it."
Febbraro grew up in Naples, rolling out fresh pasta alongside his mother and grandmother. After working in kitchens all over Europe, he arrived Stateside in 1996 to cook for the Grammy Awards dinner and never left.
These days the chef serves up generous portions of honest Italian-American fare at Allegro restaurant, located at the Wynn Las Vegas hotel.
"My cuisine is a kind of sophistication through simplicity," says Febbraro. "It's very rustic, very authentic."
"Rustic" and "authentic" are probably not the first words that come to mind to describe a 174-seat Las Vegas trattoria that serves dinner until 6 a.m. But listen to Febbraro talk about the simple pleasures of homemade pasta and watch him flatten a round of fresh pasta dough with a wooden dowel (see the video), and it's easier to imagine.
"This pasta is something you make with a little bit of flour and egg and a little bit of salt and olive oil, and then you put it together and it's endless," he explains. "There's only one pasta sheet, but you can make so many different things out of it."
For this recipe (get it here), Febbraro keeps things as simple as can be: ribbons of fettuccine cut by hand and dressed with little more than cherry tomatoes and olive oil. It may be a bit understated for Vegas, but it's just the kind of dish we find ourselves craving all the time, anywhere.