'Top Chef' Kevin Sbraga plans 20-40 seat, high end restaurant

"Top Chef" Kevin Sbraga says he's looking around Rittenhouse Square and Washington Square West for a spot for a "20-to-40- seat restaurant. Very high-end."

Willingboro's Sbraga, 31, who won Bravo's "Top Chef: D.C." Wednesday, told us yesterday that the restaurant concept is "different than anything else in the area," though he declined to elaborate. His last day at Rat's in Hamilton, N.J., is Sept. 26. Sbraga says he "decided to leave Rat's before the finale was even taped. During the show I learned a lot about cooking and myself and where I wanted to go."

We're sure the $125,000 "Top Chef" grand prize will help him get his restaurant off the ground.

Sbraga, who's worked for Jose Garces, Stephen Starr and Georges Perrier, started cooking when he was "9 or 10," mainly breakfast for his family. He honed his craft at the Burlington County Institute of Technology.

He says he doesn't cook much at home. "I leave work at work. My wife does most of the cooking." Asked if he critiques wife Jesmary's cooking the way the "Top Chef" judges tear dishes apart, Sbraga wisely said no. "I might have a comment here or there. I try not to over analyze it, but she's a good cook," he said.

Sbraga and Jesmary, who have a daughter Jenae, 5, welcomed a son, Angelo, three weeks ago.

We asked Sbraga, who has eaten all over town, to name a few of his favorite local spots for out-of-town guests. He chose the Vietnamese noodle house Pho Ha (6th & Washington) and Jim's Steaks (431 N. 62nd).