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| Chefs |

Ralph Pagano, Wife Buffy, Welcome Twins

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The Miami dining scene is aware of Ralph Pagano's "go big or go home" attitude toward everything he does. The chef's larger-than-life personality translates into all his projects -- from his television appearances on Hell's Kitchen and Pressure Cook to his weekly radio stints on BIG105's Paul and Young Ron Show, to his restaurant Naked Taco, which features tequila served in skulls, paired with pink tuna tacos.

So, it's no surprise that when the chef and his wife, Buffy, decided to start a family, they'd go for twins.

See also: Naked Taco: SoBe Joint Is Crazy Fun

Yesterday, March 12, at 2:56 p.m., Vincent Ralph and Charlie Jean Pagano were born at Mt. Sinai Hospital. The chef posted a picture to his Facebook page with a few sage words to his new family: "Welcome to the big show." Mother, son, and daughter are doing fine.

Pagano, a horse racing aficionado, was clearly ecstatic over the arrival of the babies, telling New Times that he's a winner in more ways than one. "I bet that Vincent would come out first, Charlie would be lighter, and that tequila would be the first thing the mother asked for. I won all bets!"

The chef is preparing for another offspring, of sorts. Pagano's Naked Lunch is scheduled to open later this month at the University of Miami Life Science and Technology Park. The restaurant, both a nod to Pagano's South Beach taco establishment and the book by William S. Burroughs, will offer breakfast, lunch, and dinner with dishes that pay homage to the classic delis of New York.

One of the things Pagano is stressing is the fact that people can get a good corned beef on rye at his place at a decent price. The chef, who posted several pictures of his the sandwiches, and who has made little "I love pastrami" toothpick flags for his creations, tells New Times, "Really, if you think about the things that aren't in Miami anymore, it's a proper corned beef sandwich or Italian hero. I think we need more places where you can get a good lunch for under ten bucks."

Naked Lunch will also feature a burger bar, made with 100 percent grass-fed, hormone-free beef from farms in Ocala, a daily blue plate special that includes unlimited sides, a hot peppers made in-house.

The restaurant will offer local brews, including a banana, lychee, and pineapple pilsner on tap, brewed by Gravity Brew Labs.

In the meantime, be sure to wish the happy family a hearty congratulations on Pagano's Facebook page.

Follow Laine Doss on Twitter @LaineDoss and Facebook.


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