Chef Rick Moonen
Las Vegas, NV
Chef Rick Moonen has devoted his career to being the country’s top culinary advocate for sustainable seafood. A native New Yorker, Moonen graduated first in his class from the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, New York. He apprenticed at L’Hostellerie Bressane in Hillsdale, New York, working alongside Chef Jean Morel.
From there, Moonen assumed the position of saucier at Manhattan’s La Côte Basque, followed by two years at Le Cirque working with the legendary Alain Sailhac. In the ensuing years, Moonen was executive chef at some of New York’s most iconic restaurants, including Le Relais, Century Café, Chelsea Central and The Water Club.
As executive chef and partner at Oceana, he helped the restaurant garner national recognition, as well as three stars from The New York Times. He brought Greek cuisine to another level during his time at Molyvos, the first Greek restaurant to earn three stars from The New York Times. His own restaurant, rm, also received three stars from The New York Times.
In 2005, he opened RM Seafood at Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas, offering “State-of-the-Art Sustainable Seafood.” His signature Catfish Sloppy Joe was highlighted in Esquire Magazine’s “Sandwich Encyclopedia,” prompting a guest spot on “The Oprah Winfrey Show,” where it earned the title of “Best Sandwich in America.”
Moonen has also appeared as a guest judge on Bravo’s “Top Chef Las Vegas,” as a contestant on “Top Chef Masters” and again on “Top Chef Masters 2,”where he was the runner-up.