Recent in The Viking Life
Viking Executive Chef, Grant MacPherson
"I believe truly great cooking to be a noble art. It’s an expression of generosity engaging all five senses to elicit a response, generally underpinned by pleasure."
Chef Grant’s stellar career has spanned five continents, four decades, and some of the world’s most celebrated dining and hospitality destinations. He has cooked adventurous five-star food, developed menus, designed and run kitchens, and built top-notch teams at iconic places including Raffles Hotel in Singapore, Bellagio Las Vegas, Wynn Las Vegas, Wynn Macau, Regent Hotels in Sydney, Kuala Lumpur, and Singapore, several Four Seasons, Ritz Carlton Big Island, and Sandy Lane Hotel in Barbados. This native Scotsman’s robust embrace of global wanderlust and contrasting cultures is exceeded only by his passion for food and all things culinary. With these come his deep love of the camaraderie of the kitchen, the restaurant, the venue—the life—which has earned him consummate respect for his people and executive skills as well as his mastery as a chef.
MacPherson relishes sharing tales of his colorful experiences, extraordinary mentors, and storied accomplishments so far—most recently with Word Of Mouth, a coffee-table volume brimming with mouth-watering photos, recipes, and memoir—but is always one to look to the challenges ahead. Now based in Las Vegas, MacPherson keeps up a busy calendar of international festivals and events, and guides his company Scotch Myst, a food and beverage consultancy specializing in designing and executing custom solutions for boutique hotel and restaurant properties worldwide.
Current endeavors include helming The Merrywell gastro-pubs at both the Crown Perth and Crown Melbourne in Australia. He is developing a new project in Beverly Hills, and leading the restaurant remodel for St. Petersburg’s historic and luxurious Grand Hotel Europe by Orient-Express. In 2013, MacPherson was named Global Culinarian for Beech Ovens, Jade Range and Viking Commercial Range, and he has been Viking Commercial’s Executive Chef since 2010. He also represents the American Pistachio Growers, and recently collaborated with Apple on the late Steve Jobs’ vision for a new campus dining facility in Cupertino.
MacPherson was born in Dundee in the central lowlands of Scotland, later moving to Johannesburg, South Africa and then Alberta, Canada with his family. His culinary career began in what he calls "the bottom of an endless pile of chicken wings"—and a non-stop soundtrack of rock and roll—at a southern Ontario restaurant.
His talents quickly led to positions at the Four Seasons Hotels in Vancouver, Toronto, and London England. There, he met mentor Chef Serge Dansereau, who brought him to Kables at the Regent Hotel in Sydney, where Dansereau was pioneering Australian cuisine (during MacPherson’s time there, it was Australia’s first hotel restaurant to win "3 hats," the country’s equivalent of Michelin stars). Soon after came stints at Regent Hotels in Kuala Lumpur and Singapore. In 1993, MacPherson accepted a position at Raffles Hotel, the legendary "Grand Old Lady of Singapore," originally established in 1887. He was part of the team that helped grow Raffles into a multi-property brand with locations worldwide. In 1998, MacPherson was recruited by Steve Wynn to head culinary operations at the Bellagio Resort & Casino in Las Vegas. He spent a decade with the Wynn Organization in Las Vegas and Macau before carving out his own entrepreneurial turf with Scotch Myst.
Quoted in Word Of Mouth, Wynn Macau’s President Ian M. Coughlan describes MacPherson as, "An inspirer, innovator and perfectionist…he leads from the front with a pan in his hand." As will always be the case.