Welcome to Dream Dinner Party, where we ask notable figures to describe just that: the dinner party of their dreams.
Kevin Hart is a multihyphenate public figure—he’s a comedian, an actor, and an entrepreneur. Here he reveals the (tight) invite list for a fantasy meal that sounds more like a Harvard Business School master class, with a cafeteria-esque menu to match. But we’re not here to judge! —Dawn Davis, editor in chief
Kevin, you’re an enigma. You say you eat to live as opposed to live to eat, yet you own restaurants and can rattle off your favorite Philadelphia hoagie spots like a true food obsessive. And you entertain on the regular. So who gets invited to your dream dinner?
Only two people: Jeff Bezos and Kobe Bryant.
Why those two?
Jeff Bezos because of the way Amazon has grown over the years; it has become a resource for so many. I would love to talk to him about what the ultimate goal is for Amazon. Where are they going? And how do they want to get there? Because I imagine they feel they’re only halfway done.
Kobe Bryant because of his spirit, his will—the ambition and dedication that he attached to his craft. He was an extremely committed person. To tap into and understand that energy in-depth would be pretty amazing. The lessons would be invaluable.
You hear footsteps. It’s a surprise guest! A comedian or one of the actors with whom you’ve teamed up. Who do you hope it will be and why?
I’m going with Chris Rock. That’s my guy. We’re extremely close. It’s always a good time when he’s there.
Ali Wong said the same thing! Okay, what’s on the menu?
I’m pretty simple. Chicken, fried rice, Caesar salad. Unless I’m eating vegan, then I’ll swap out the chicken for a plant-based version. Nothing too heavy because I want the energy to be in the conversation. I am not an adventurous eater.
Speaking of following a vegan diet (occasionally), the chain of fast-casual restaurants that you started in California, Hart House, is one hundred percent vegan. What inspired that?
It is all about having an option. Looking at the fast-food chains out there, they’ve been the same for years except for a few new ones like Shake Shack and Raising Cane’s. I wondered what was available for the plant-based customer. As a long-time occasional vegan, I wanted to create that.
I watched a Bon Appétit video with you and sommelier André Mack and learned that you have a vineyard in your backyard in California. Is there a future in which I can buy a Hart Sauvignon Blanc at the supermarket?
Ha! I have about six barrels that are ready to be bottled. But no, it’s not for commercial use. It’s for my family, my kids—when they are grown, of course!