03/04/2011 12:00 pm ET Updated May 25, 2011

Eric Ripert's Virtuosic Fish Butcher

Justo Thomas is a symphony conductor.

His music: seldom heard. His stage: a sterile ten by five foot white-tiled room. The temperature: as cold as the fluorescent lighting above.

"Nobody comes down here. All this space is mine. Nobody comes in here," says Thomas.

Here is the basement of Le Bernardin, arguably the best seafood restaurant in New York and most likely the country.

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