Today, the James Beard Foundation announced the nominees for this year's awards, a step that whittles down the large roster of semifinalists released about a month ago to a smaller but still pretty sizable list. The winners won't be announced until the gala on May 2 in Chicago, but making it this far along is already enough for a chef to get some attention.
The full list is below, but here are some musings from Tasting Table's editors:
Both Angela Dimayuga at Mission Chinese Food and Daniela Soto-Innes of Cosme receive the nominations for restaurants attached to much more familiar chef names (Danny Bowien and Enrique Olvera)—a good reminder that it takes a village to build a great restaurant. Another example of that is Alex Bois at High Street on Hudson in New York City and on Market in Philadelphia, who is just one chef on an all-star team that includes Eli Kulp, also a nominee. And finally, is anyone else surprised that all of the midwest nominees are from Chicago?
Share your thoughts with us on Twitter @TastingTable.
Check out the list of chefs and restaurants below and click here for the nominees in restaurant design, cookbooks, wine and other categories.
Best New Restaurant
A restaurant opened in the calendar year before the award will be given that already displays excellence in food, beverage, and service, and that is likely to make a significant impact in years to come.
Death & Taxes, Raleigh, NC
Liholiho Yacht Club, San Francisco
Shaya, New Orleans
A chef or baker who prepares breads, pastries or desserts in a retail bakery, and who serves as a national standard-bearer of excellence. Must have been a baker or pastry chef for at least five years.
Joanne Chang, Flour Bakery + Café, Boston
Mark Furstenberg, Bread Furst, Washington, D.C.
Zachary Golper, Bien Cuit, Brooklyn, NY
Belinda Leong and Michel Suas, B. Patisserie, San Francisco
William Werner, Craftsman and Wolves, San Francisco
A working chef in America whose career has set national industry standards and who has served as an inspiration to other food professionals. Eligible candidates must have been working as a chef for the past five years.
Sean Brock, Husk, Nashville
Suzanne Goin, Lucques, Los Angeles
Donald Link, Herbsaint, New Orleans
Michael Solomonov, Zahav, Philadelphia
Michael Tusk, Quince, San Francisco
Outstanding Pastry Chef
A chef or baker who prepares desserts, pastries or breads in a restaurant, and who serves as a national standard bearer of excellence. Must have been a pastry chef or baker for the past five years.
Meg Galus, Boka, Chicago
Maura Kilpatrick, Oleana, Cambridge, MA
Dolester Miles, Highlands Bar & Grill, Birmingham, AL
Dahlia Narvaez, Osteria Mozza, Los Angeles
Ghaya Oliveira, Daniel, NYC
Jennifer Yee, Lafayette, NYC
A restaurant in the United States that serves as a national standard bearer of consistent quality and excellence in food, atmosphere and service. Eligible restaurants must have been in operation 10 or more consecutive years.
Frasca Food & Wine, Boulder, CO
Highlands Bar and Grill, Birmingham, AL
Momofuku Noodle Bar, NYC
The Spotted Pig, NYC
A working restaurateur who sets high national standards in restaurant operations and entrepreneurship. Candidates must have been in the restaurant business for at least 10 years. Candidates must not have been nominated for a James Beard Foundation chef award in the past five years.
Kevin Boehm and Rob Katz, Boka Restaurant Group, Chicago (Boka, Girl & the Goat, Momotaro, Swift & Sons, and others)
Ken Friedman, NYC (The Spotted Pig, The Breslin, Tosca Café)
Michael Mina, Mina Restaurants, San Francisco (Michael Mina, Bourbon Steak, RN74, and others)
Cindy Pawlcyn, Napa, CA (Mustards Grill, Cindy's Backstreet Kitchen, Cindy's Waterfront at the Monterey Bay Aquarium)
Stephen Starr, Starr Restaurants, Philadelphia (Serpico, The Dandelion, Talula's Garden, and others)
Rising Star Chef of the Year
A chef age 30 or younger who displays an impressive talent and who is likely to make a significant impact on the industry in years to come.
Alex Bois, High Street on Market, Philadelphia
Angela Dimayuga, Mission Chinese Food, NYC
Grae Nonas, Olamaie, Austin
Matt Rudofker, Momofuku Ssäm Bar, NYC
Daniela Soto-Innes, Cosme, NYC
Jenner Tomaska, Next, Chicago
Chefs who have set new or consistent standards of excellence in their respective regions. Eligible candidates may be from any kind of dining establishment and must have been working as a chef for at least five years with the three most recent years spent in the region.
Best Chef: Great Lakes (IL, IN, MI, OH)
Abraham Conlon, Fat Rice, Chicago
Curtis Duffy, Grace, Chicago
Lee Wolen, Boka, Chicago
Erling Wu-Bower, Nico Osteria, Chicago
Andrew Zimmerman, Sepia, Chicago
Best Chef: Mid-Atlantic (D.C., DE, MD, NJ, PA, VA)
Peter Chang, Peter Chang, Arlington, VA
Eli Kulp, Fork, Philadelphia
Rich Landau, Vedge, Philadelphia
Aaron Silverman, Rose's Luxury, Washington, D.C.
Greg Vernick, Vernick Food & Drink, Philadelphia
Cindy Wolf, Charleston, Baltimore
Best Chef: Midwest (IA, KS, MN, MO, NE, ND, SD, WI)
Paul Berglund, The Bachelor Farmer, Minneapolis
Justin Carlisle, Ardent, Milwaukee
Kevin Nashan, Sidney Street Café, St. Louis
Lenny Russo, Heartland Restaurant & Farm Direct Market, St. Paul, MN
Kevin Willmann, Farmhaus, St. Louis
Best Chef: New York City (Five Boroughs)
Marco Canora, Hearth
Mario Carbone and Rich Torrisi, Carbone
Anita Lo, Annisa
Jonathan Waxman, Barbuto
Jody Williams, Buvette
Best Chef: Northeast (CT, MA, ME, MH, NY STATE, RI, VT)
Karen Akunowicz, Myers + Chang, Boston
Brian Hill, Francine, Camden, ME
Zak Pelaccio, Fish & Game, Hudson, NY
Susan Regis, Shepard, Cambridge, MA
Mike Wiley and Andrew Taylor Eventide Oyster Co., Portland, ME
Best Chef: Northwest (AK, ID, MT, OR, WA, WY)
Greg Denton and Gabrielle Quiñónez Denton, Ox, Portland, OR
Mike Easton, Il Corvo Pasta, Seattle
Renee Erickson, The Whale Wins, Seattle
Justin Woodward, Castagna, Portland, OR
Rachel Yang and Seif Chirchi, Joule, Seattle
Best Chef: South (AL, AR, FL, LA, MS, PR)
Vishwesh Bhatt, Snackbar, Oxford, MS
Justin Devillier, La Petite Grocery, New Orleans
Jose Enrique, Jose Enrique, San Juan, PR
Slade Rushing, Brennan's, New Orleans
Isaac Toups, Toups' Meatery, New Orleans
Best Chef: Southeast (GA, KY, NC, SC, TN, WV)
Kevin Gillespie, Gunshow, Atlanta
Edward Lee, 610 Magnolia, Louisville, KY
Steven Satterfield, Miller Union, Atlanta
Andrew Ticer and Michael Hudman, Andrew Michael Italian Kitchen, Memphis
Tandy Wilson, City House, Nashville
Best Chef: Southwest (AZ, CO, NM, OK, TX, UT)
Bryce Gilmore, Barley Swine, Austin
Steve McHugh, Cured, San Antonio
Hugo Ortega, Caracol, Houston
Alex Seidel, Fruition, Denver
Justin Yu, Oxheart, Houston
Best Chef: West (CA, HI, NV)
Matthew Accarrino, SPQR, San Francisco
Michael Cimarusti, Providence, Los Angeles
Dominique Crenn, Atelier Crenn, San Francisco
Jeremy Fox, Rustic Canyon, Santa Monica, CA
Corey Lee, Benu, San Francisco
Jon Shook and Vinny Dotolo, Animal, Los Angeles