At the top of Eastern Avenue, chefs Cory Harwell and John Courtney have opened the final hallmark of Kerry Simon’s legacy with Standard & Pour, and the restaurant couldn’t serve as a better finale to Simon’s illustrious career.
Its menu of elevated comfort food invokes that for which the chef was best known. Take for instance the simple salt and pepper fries ($8) delivered with a trio of house-made dipping sauces: creamy basil mayo, robust smoked ketchup and a heat-forward horseradish mustard. Enhanced with hints of sugar and citrus, these fries would be a worthy complement to the original Iron Chef Burger that originally thrust Simon into the national culinary consciousness. S&P’s mini burgers ($12) evoke that treasure in bite-size format, simply adorned with fontina cheese, a crisscut potato chip and tomato relish.
Elsewhere on the menu there’s a delightfully gooey mac and cheese ($12) armed with two lesser-utilized cheeses, fontina and havarti, and finished with a port wine sauce and date and bleu cheese jam ($12) that might improve on the infamous original at sister restaurant Carson Kitchen. Spicy shrimp ($16) arrive swimming in a red curry, with sambal and coconut milk delivering a hot/cool contrast. A trio of kimchi tacos ($16) swaddle sweetened Korean kalbi flank steak and an Asian pear slaw in scallion pancakes substituting for tortillas, though none of the flavors dominate enough to warrant a second helping.
A must try: the venison tartare ($18), an engrossing, edgy dish worth seeking out. Cherry mostarda and powdered white chocolate provide contrasts to the surprisingly mild raw meat. Don’t be afraid, just dive right in.
One can only hope Henderson diners embrace this restaurant while adventurous gourmands from around the Valley make the trip to help S&P survive and thrive. If the failure of the epically progressive David Clawson Restaurant in this area is any indication, S&P has its work cut out. Simon’s legacy deserves our support.
Standard & Pour 11261 S. Eastern Ave. #200, 702-629-5523. Daily, 4-10 p.m.