Morton's Restaurant Group, Inc. owns and operates Morton's of Chicago, a high-end steakhouse restaurant chain aimed at a business clientele, and Bertolini's Authentic Trattorias, a smaller chain offering Italian specialties in a casual dining atmosphere. At the end of 1998 Morton's Restaurant Group owned and operated 43 Morton's of Chicago and 12 Bertolini's units. All Morton's of Chicago restaurants were similar in style, concept, and decor, and were located in retail, hotel, commercial, and office building complexes in major metropolitan areas and urban centers. Catering primarily to business-oriented clients, Morton's of Chicago had an average per person check of about $65 in 1998. The Bertolini's restaurants offered white tablecloth service, with an average per person check of about $20. Morton's Restaurant Group also held a minority of stock in two other restaurant chains, Mick's and Peasant.

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Spinach and Avocado Salad



SPINACH and AVOCADO SALAD
Morton's the Steakhouse Recipe

Serves 6

18 ounces fresh spinach leaves, washed and dried
2-3 strips bacon
2/3 cup white wine vinegar
3 tablespoons sugar
2 1/2 teaspoons sweet paprika
1 1/4 teaspoons Dijon mustard
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
3/4 cup vegetable oil
12 fresh white mushrooms, stemmed and thinly sliced
3 avocados

Remove the thick spinach leaves and tear the leaves into bite size pieces. Transfer to a large salad bowl.

In a small skillet or saute pan, cook the bacon over medium heat for 5 to 6 minutes, or until crisp. Drain on paper towels, let cool, and then crumble.

In a small bowl, whisk together the vinegar, sugar, paprika, mustard, and garlic powder until the sugar is dissolved. Slowly whisk in the oil until mixed, to yield about 1 1/3 cups of dressing.

Pour the dressing over the spinach, add the mushrooms, and gently toss until thoroughly mixed.

Remove the skin and pits from the avocados. Cut the avocado flesh into 1/2 inch cubes and add them to the salad. Toss very gently. Sprinkle the crumbled bacon over the salad and serve.

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