By Andrea Bennett | October 6, 2016 | Food & Drink
Libertine Social debuts at Mandalay Bay.
Ahi tuna cones.
We all have a friend who’s just a little more awesome than we are—adventurous, self-made, and a liberal sharer of his global whiskey collection. His name is probably Kyle. At least, Kyle is the fictional character around whom Chef Shawn McClain and Studio Munge designer Alessandro Munge built their new bar-meets-kitchen-meets-hangout space, Libertine Social. “We did a cool trip with Tony [Abou-Ganim, master mixologist] and Chef to the Abbot Kinney neighborhood in Venice Beach,” Munge explains.
Inspired, they came up with a place for this world’s most interesting character to entertain—alongside an open kitchen, a dining room hung with his pictures, and in his bar-within-a-bar serving barrel-aged and draft cocktails and history-inspired punches. “Kyle sort of became Shawn’s alter-ego,” Munge laughs. Expect casual apps a chef would serve at home, like Scotch olives (stuffed with lamb and feta and deep fried) and a sausage board with homemade merguez, hot sausage, and bratwurst.
Imagine Kyle (as McClain) turning out a perfectly charred Snake River Farms Wagyu skirt steak from his mesquite grill, a pile of travel-inspired, harissa rubbed mussels, or his Modern Fried Egg, cooked sous vide with sweet corn custard and topped with sturgeon caviar, served in its own shell. You could get used to your cool friend’s new hangout. 877-632-7800
photography courtesy of mgm resorts international