Dec 12, 2022 - Food and Drink

Chef Michael Lee to open a test kitchen in Cary

Photo courtesy of M Restaurants

Prolific chef Michael Lee is not done expanding in Cary.

Driving the news: Lee told Axios that he plans to open his sixth restaurant in Cary's Fenton development early next year — this time building out what he's calling The Test Kitchen.

Why it matters: Lee, who made his name opening a string of Japanese-and-Korean-inspired restaurants in downtown Durham, is helping establish Cary's new Fenton development as a true food destination.

  • M Sushi opened there earlier this year and a project from Raleigh chef Scott Crawford should open in 2023.

Details: A test kitchen serves as a laboratory for chefs, allowing them to try out new recipes, ingredients and out-of-the-box concepts.

  • The Test Kitchen, which will be connected to M Sushi Cary, will have no boundaries, Lee said.
  • Lee said he could imagine working on dishes like Singapore chili crabs, pasta dishes, Hong Kong dim sum and beef carpaccio from Vietnam.

What he's saying: "We want it to be a place where we do anything and everything that we're excited about," Lee told Axios.

What's next: Lee said he's hoping to open The Test Kitchen by March.

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