Downtown’s Vegas Test Kitchen set to build local flavor

The former Downtown home of the Chow restaurant on East Fremont Street is set to become a business incubator for new Las Vegas dining concepts later this month, hosting temporary chef residencies, pop-up dinners and other special events.

Vegas Test Kitchen comes from the imagination of Jolene Mannina, a local hospitality innovator who most recently founded the culinary event platform SecretBurger. The space adjacent to Fergusons Downtown will be sectioned into different vendor hubs to offer a variety of food and drink options from Vegas chefs and cooks who are trying out new ideas.

“Times are tough for everyone right now, but I truly believe that Downtown Las Vegas needs this, and our chefs are craving it,” Mannina said in a statement. “This incubator kitchen will give chefs an opportunity to test concepts, see what sticks and get the community to fall in love with them and their food. It’s a win for everyone involved.”

Vegas Test Kitchen will provide three-month chef residencies, allowing developing restaurateurs the opportunity to perfect their menus, branding and business operations. The first residency will be Lanny Chin, chef de cuisine at the Slanted Door at the Forum Shops at Caesars, which is currently closed. Chin will be serving ramen, egg rolls and more through his Slurp Society concept.

Future residencies are in the works featuring Roy Ellamar from Harvest at Bellagio, Chris Conlon from Piero’s and more. The first two daily pop-up events will feature Bodega Bagel from Rooster Boy Café chef and owner Sonia El-Nawal and Banichka from Forte Tapas owner Nina Manchev. Future pop-ups are planned featuring Yukon Pizza, PopNPies, Sliced Sushi and more.

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