Thursday, Sept. 28–At last night’s Annual Chamber Awards celebration, two Wilton restaurateurs were named “Business Person of the Year,” recognizing their contribution to the Wilton business landscape–one that has had a profound impact on residential life as well. Mario Lopez and Cristina Ramirez, the husband-and-wife team that owns hot-spot eateries Bianco Rosso Wine Bar and Restaurant and Craft14 Kitchen + Bar, were awarded the title in front of a packed room at Rolling Hills Country Club.

Lopez and Ramirez opened their first restaurant in Wilton Center six years ago, and immediately solidified its standing in town as a vibrant addition to Wilton’s growing culinary scene. That was followed last year by Craft14, a restaurant that also quickly established a loyal following.

According to Chamber officials, the duo says their secret to success is simple–hard work, team spirit, and kindness.

Their success also stems from their successful partnership, in married life as well as in business. Both hail from Ecuador, but they met at school in the United States while learning to perfect their English. They both value family too–Lopez’s brother, Jaime, was instrumental in getting Bianco Rosso established early on and is often on site. In fact, Craft 14 was named in tribute to their young daughter’s birth date.

Incoming Chamber president Susan Goldman notes that their award also reflects their involvement in all parts of Wilton life, including many willing contributions to philanthropies and local organizations.

Bianco Rosso is located at 151 Old Ridgefield Rd.. Craft14 is located at 5 River Rd., in the Wilton River Park shopping plaza.