A large part of this success is thanks to Christopher Lee, the restaurant's chef de cuisine who recently won the coveted James Beard "Rising Star Chef of the Year 2005" award.
And he has agreed to accept The Saturday Early Show's Chef on a Shoestring challenge of preparing a meal for four on a $40 budget.
The Menu: Garden Fresh Chopped Salad with Ricotta Salata (Pg. 1), Striped Bass with a Warm Spicy Curry Vinaigrette (Pg. 2) and Fresh Blueberries with Granola and Mint Sabayon (Pg. 3).
The following are his recipes:
Garden Fresh Chopped Salad with Ricotta Salata
1 green cucumber
4 ripe plum tomatoes
1 small red onion
1/4 lb ricotta salata, grated
1 lemon, juiced
4 large basil leaves, slivered
1 Tb. red wine vinegar
3 Tb. extra virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper
- Give a nice rinse to the tomatoes and cucumber. Then cut the cucumber (skin on), tomatoes, onion and avocado into small dice.
- Add all the vegetables into a medium-size mixing bowl with the lemon juice, red wine vinegar, and the extra virgin olive oil. Mix well.
- Finish the salad with salt, pepper, sliced basil leaves, and grated ricotta salata.
- Adjust seasoning with either more acid or salt and pepper.
Note: Any ingredients can be substituted with vegetables of choice.