British billionaire entrepreneur Sir Richard Branson has set several world records for daring travel adventures by balloon and boat. His â€˜Virginâ€™ brand can be seen on everything from airplanes to credit cards to entertainment â€˜mega stores.â€™ Known for his flamboyant stunts and exotic ventures, Branson’s Virgin Galactic project aims to rocket tourists into outer space for $200,000 a ticket. The first flight is targeted for sometime in 2011.
Sir Richard’s newest adventure: a restaurant in New Jersey.
Called â€˜Ninety Acres,â€™ the new restaurant, in Somerset County, will be just one feature of a â€˜culinary resortâ€™ called Natirar. Also part of the culinary center is a cooking school, wine school, and a working farm that produces ingredients for the restaurant’s â€˜hyper-localâ€™ menu. Located about 45 miles from New York City, the property was once owned by King Hassan II of Morocco.
For executive chef, Branson has tapped David Felter, who most recently earned accolades at the highly-rated Pluckemin Inn in Bedminster, NJ. Ninety Acres’ New American farm-to-table menu will offer entrees ranging from $26 for steak to $32 for lamb. Felter told Restaurant Hospitality that the focus will be â€˜good food made simply.â€™
In addition to the culinary center, a 76-bed luxury resort and spa is scheduled to open next summer.
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