Restaurants with a Check Average of More Than $30 per Person

First Place (tie): Max Downtown Chop House and Whiskey Bar, Hartford, Conn.

Photos courtesy of Jamie Carvalho

Why it Won:

The tabletop really integrates and coordinates well with the total interior design. It uses a nice blend of materials: stainless, unique glass pieces, a custom logoed leather placemat, linen napkin, etc. The tabletop achieves its goal of trying to create a unique presentation for each menu item. The blue colors of the walls extend to the tabletop, too.

Specifying Team

Steven Abrams, managing partner, Max Downtown; Brian Mitchell, beverage director, Max Restaurant Group; Rich Rosenthal, president and founder, Max Restaurant Group; Chris Sheehan, executive chef, Max Downtown; Scott Smith, vice president, Max Restaurant Group; and Corinne Tawa, sales consultant, Kittredge Equipment Company

Max downtown bar

Max downtown cast iron

Max Downtown pasta

Max Downtown Fish

Max Downtown Fish


First Place (tie): Fat Ox, Scottsdale, Ariz.

Photos courtesy of Nicky Hedayatzadeh

Why it Won

Despite the use of different woods, the tabletop items transition seamlessly from one setting to another. The brushed brass accessories go well with the matte blue china, making for a unique presentation. The logoed plate with the greeting creates a welcoming aesthetic.

Specifying Team

Matt Carter, executive chef and owner, The Fat Ox; Rochelle Daniel, chef, The Fat Ox; Mark Drinkwater, partner, The Fat Ox; Mark Jensen, regional business development manager, TRC Marketing; Nancy Johnson, dealer sales rep, The Wasserstrom Company; and Brian Raab, partner, The Fat Ox

Fat ox 1

Fat ox 1

Fat ox 1

Fat ox 1


Honorable Mention: Twisted Frenchman, Pittsburgh

Photos courtesy of Allison Waltz

Worth Mentioning

This tabletop epitomizes the contemporary French theme and elegant fine dining of the restaurant. It captures the idea of warm elegance.

Specifying Team

  • Andrew Garbarino, chef, Twisted Frenchman; Anne Ladd, director of tabletop, TriMark SS Kemp; and Mike Wahl, dealer sales rep, TriMark SS Kemp
  • China: Steelite and TriMark USA
  • Flatware: Steelite and TriMark USA
  • Glassware: Steelite
  • Accessories: Hollowick, Steelite and Home Depot

TwistedFrenchman1117ALW 8786

TwistedFrenchman1117ALW 8786


Honorable Mention: Society, Ft. Myers, Fla.

Photos courtesy of Kelsie Harcup, Harcup Photography

Worth Mentioning

The china and tabletop work together to make for a fantastic presentation. In doing so, they used a variety of plates, including different shapes and colors, that show off the food. Each unique dish gets individual attention and yet it all ties together. The copper flatware, while elegant, also makes the tabletop unique.

Specifying Team

Todd Ericson, chef/partner, Society; John Hadaway, sales associate, Table Top Dogz; Randy Hignight, co-founder, Table Top Dogz; and Larry Lease, dealer sales rep, Edward Don & Company

Society sushi

Society sushi

Society sushi

Society sushi