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Chef Chat, Part 2: Carlos Rodriguez of Vic & Anthony's

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Yesterday we chatted with Carlos Rodriguez about building Vic & Anthony's during the past eight years. Today we get personal...and find out about the restaurant's Vegas location.

Eating Our Words: When not at work, where do you take the family?

Carlos Rodriguez: I cook a whole lot at home. It is a lifelong passion that transcends work. When we do go out to eat, the kids love going to a nice little place called Cajun Family Restaurant. The kids can have a good time there. I love Hugo's on Westheimer -- they are a big deal for Houston dining as well. I met Hugo and his family in Mexico at a cooking seminar. Sunday brunch is always a good idea there.

EOW: You guys have another location halfway across the country in Vegas, right?

CR: Yes, and my duties are held there as well. We opened in the Golden Nugget Casino on December 31, 2005, and I have been flying back and forth ever since.

EOW: Was it hard to recreate the Vic and Anthony's experience 1,000 miles away?

CR: We definitely struggled, but it was worth every drop of sweat. We decided to add more red tones and used local Las Vegas stone to create a more intimate Vegas dining experience. We do fly in the seafood from our local seafood supplier, the extraordinary Jim Gossen of Louisiana Foods. He has logistically helped us recreate fresh seafood cuisine by flying in fresh products on a weekly basis.

EOW: We know where we are eating next time we go gamble!

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