James Beard Foundation Announces 2019 Restaurant and Chef Semifinalists

James Beard Foundation Announces 2019 Restaurant and Chef Semifinalists

James Beard Foundation Announces 2019 Restaurant and Chef SemifinalistsNew York, NY  (RestaurantNews.com)  The James Beard Foundation announced today its list of Restaurant and Chef Award semifinalists in advance of the 29th annual James Beard Awards. The prestigious group of semifinalists across all categories represents a wide collection of culinary talent, from exceptional chefs and dining destinations nationally and across ten different regions to the best new restaurants, outstanding bar, outstanding baker, and a rising star chefs 30 years of age or under. The full list of 2019 semifinalists can be reviewed at the end of the press release or directly at the James Beard Foundation website.

The Foundation will announce the final nominees for all Award categories during a press conference in Houston, hosted by James Beard Award–winning chef Hugo Ortega at his namesake Mexican restaurant, Hugo’s, on Wednesday, March 27th, 2019. The event will take place at 9:00 A.M. CT / 10:00 A.M. ET and will be streamed live online (details coming soon on the Foundation’s website) and the nominees will be live-tweeted via the James Beard Foundation Twitter feed at twitter.com/beardfoundation.

Overview of Restaurant and Chef Awards Process

The James Beard Foundation holds an online open call for entries beginning in mid-October of each year. Entries received, along with input solicited from an independent volunteer group of more than 250 panelists around the country, are reviewed by the Restaurant and Chef Committee to determine eligibility and regional representation. Based on the results and eligibility requirements for each award, the committee then produces a nominating ballot that lists the semifinalists in each of the 21 Restaurant and Chef Award categories. The list of semifinalists is then voted on by more than 600 judges from across the country to determine the final nominees in each category. The same group of judges, which comprises leading regional restaurant critics, food and wine editors, culinary educators, and past James Beard Award winners, then votes on the nominees to select the winners. Tabulations to determine the nominees and winners are done by independent auditors Lutz & Carr. The governing Awards committee, board of trustees, and staff of the James Beard Foundation do not vote, and the results are kept confidential until the presentation of winners in May. James Beard Awards policies and procedures can be reviewed at jamesbeard.org/awards/policies.

2019 James Beard Awards
Restaurant and Chef Award Semifinalists and Award Criteria

Best New Restaurant

A restaurant opened in 2018 that already demonstrates excellence in cuisine and hospitality, and that is likely to make a significant impact in years to come.

  • Adda Indian Canteen, NYC
  • Andiario, West Chester, PA
  • Angler, San Francisco
  • Atomix, NYC
  • Bardea Food & Drink, Wilmington, DE
  • Bavel, Los Angeles
  • Bywater American Bistro, New Orleans
  • Canard, Portland, OR
  • Celeste, Somerville, MA
  • Chickadee, Boston
  • Elle, Washington, C.
  • The Elysian Bar, New Orleans
  • Folk, Nashville
  • Frenchette, NYC
  • Kyoten, Chicago
  • Larder Delicatessen and Bakery, Cleveland
  • Lineage, Wailea, HI
  • Majordomo, Los Angeles
  • Marrow, Detroit
  • Nyum Bai, Oakland, CA
  • Passerotto, Chicago
  • Petra and the Beast, Dallas
  • Popol Vuh, Minneapolis
  • Q House, Denver
  • Sawyer, Seattle
  • Spoken English, Washington, D.C.
  • The Stanley, Charlotte, NC
  • Suerte, Austin
  • The Surf Club Restaurant, Surfside, FL
  • Vianda, San Juan, PR

Outstanding Baker

A pastry chef or baker who demonstrates exceptional skill, integrity, and character in the preparation of desserts, pastries, or breads served in a retail bakery. Must have been working as a pastry chef or baker for the past five years.

  • Umber Ahmad, Mah-Ze-Dahr Bakery, NYC
  • Kim Boyce, Bakeshop, Portland, OR
  • Andy Clark, Moxie Bread Co., Louisville, CO
  • Evrim Dogu and Evin Dogu, Sub Rosa Bakery, Richmond, VA
  • Tova du Plessis, Essen Bakery, Philadelphia
  • Zachary Golper, Bien Cuit, NYC
  • Don Guerra, Barrio Bread, Tucson, AZ
  • Naomi Harris, Madruga Bakery, Coral Gables, FL
  • Stephanie Hart, Brown Sugar Bakery, Chicago
  • Maura Kilpatrick, Sofra Bakery and Café, Cambridge, MA
  • Lisa Ludwinski, Sister Pie, Detroit
  • Greg Mindel, Neighbor Bakehouse, San Francisco
  • Taylor Petrehn, 1900 Barker, Lawrence, KS
  • Alison Pray, Standard Baking Co., Portland, ME
  • Nathaniel Reid, Nathaniel Reid Bakery, Kirkwood, MO
  • Avery Ruzicka, Manresa Bread, Los Gatos, CA
  • Kit Schumann and Jesse Schumann, Sea Wolf Bakers, Seattle
  • Debbie Swenerton, Black Bear Bread Co., Grayton Beach, FL
  • Greg Wade, Publican Quality Bread, Chicago
  • Chris Wilkins, Root Baking Co., Atlanta

Outstanding Bar Program

A restaurant or bar that demonstrates exceptional care and skill in the selection, preparation, and serving of cocktails, spirits, and/or beer.

  • Anvil Bar & Refuge, Houston
  • The Atomic Lounge, Birmingham, AL
  • The Baldwin Bar, Woburn, MA
  • Bar Agricole, San Francisco
  • Bryant’s Cocktail Lounge, Milwaukee
  • Clavel Mezcaleria, Baltimore
  • Columbia Room, Washington, C.
  • Dead Rabbit, NYC
  • Expatriate, Portland, OR
  • Kimball House, Decatur, GA
  • La Factoría, San Juan, PR
  • Leyenda, Brooklyn, NY
  • Lost Lake, Chicago
  • The Monarch Bar, Kansas City, MO
  • Monk’s Café, Philadelphia
  • No Anchor, Seattle
  • Old Lightning, Marina Del Rey, CA
  • Planter’s House, St. Louis
  • Saint Leo, Oxford, MS
  • Ticonderoga Club, Atlanta

Outstanding Chef (Presented by All-Clad Metalcrafters)

A chef who sets high culinary standards and who has served as a positive example for other food professionals. Must have been working as a chef for the past five years.

  • Ashley Christensen, Poole’s Diner, Raleigh, NC
  • Renee Erickson, Bateau, Seattle
  • Colby Garrelts, Bluestem, Kansas City, MO
  • Sarah Grueneberg, Monteverde, Chicago
  • Shiro Kashiba, Sushi Kashiba, Seattle
  • David Kinch, Manresa, Los Gatos, CA
  • Christopher Kostow, The Restaurant at Meadowood, St. Helena, CA
  • Corey Lee, Benu, San Francisco
  • Donald Link, Herbsaint, New Orleans
  • Margot McCormack, Margot Café & Bar, Nashville
  • Tory Miller, L’Etoile, Madison, WI
  • Maricel Presilla, Cucharamama, Hoboken, NJ
  • Missy Robbins, Lilia, Brooklyn, NY
  • Chrysa Robertson, Rancho Pinot, Scottsdale, AZ
  • Gabriel Rucker, Le Pigeon, Portland, OR
  • Chris Shepherd, Georgia James, Houston
  • Ana Sortun, Oleana, Cambridge, MA
  • Vikram Sunderam, Rasika, Washington, C.
  • Fabio Trabocchi, Fiola, Washington, C.
  • Marc Vetri, Vetri Cucina, Philadelphia

Outstanding Pastry Chef (Presented by Lavazza)

A pastry chef or baker who demonstrates exceptional skill, integrity, and character in the preparation of desserts, pastries, or breads served in a restaurant. Must have been working as a pastry chef or baker for the past five years.

  • Jeb Breakell, The Wolf’s Tailor, Denver
  • Ashley Capps, Buxton Hall, Asheville, NC
  • Juan Contreras, Atelier Crenn, San Francisco
  • Kelly Fields, Willa Jean, New Orleans
  • Meg Galus, Boka, Chicago
  • Megan Garrelts, Rye, Leawood, KS
  • Zoe Kanan, Simon & the Whale, NYC
  • Michelle Karr-Ueoka, MW Restaurant, Honolulu
  • Margarita Manzke, République, Los Angeles
  • James Matty, Suraya, Philadelphia
  • Junko Mine, Cafe Juanita, Kirkland, WA
  • Diane Moua, Spoon and Stable, Minneapolis
  • Pichet Ong, Brothers and Sisters, Washington, C.
  • Natasha Pickowicz, Flora Bar, NYC
  • Michelle Polzine, 20th Century Café, San Francisco
  • Rabii Saber, Four Seasons Resort, Orlando, FL
  • Ricardo “Ricchi” Sanchez, Bullion, Dallas
  • Laura Sawicki, Launderette, Austin
  • Whang Suh, Hen & Heifer, Guilford, CT
  • Cynthia Wong, Life Raft Treats, Charleston, SC

Outstanding Restaurant (Presented by S.Pellegrino® Sparkling Natural Mineral Water)

A restaurant that demonstrates consistent excellence in food, atmosphere, service, and operations. Must have been in business 10 or more consecutive years.

  • Balthazar, NYC
  • Bolete, Bethlehem, PA
  • Cafe Juanita, Kirkland, WA
  • El Charro Café, Tucson, AZ
  • FIG, Charleston, SC
  • Fore Street, Portland, ME
  • Jaleo, Washington, C.
  • Komi, Washington, D.C.
  • Marché, Eugene, OR
  • Nopa, San Francisco
  • Norman’s, Orlando, FL
  • North Pond, Chicago
  • O Ya, Boston
  • The Original Ninfa’s on Navigation, Houston
  • Park’s BBQ, Los Angeles
  • Quince, San Francisco
  • Restaurant Alma, Minneapolis
  • Sagami, Collingswood, NJ
  • SriPraPhai, NYC
  • Zahav, Philadelphia

Outstanding Restaurateur (Presented by Magellan Corporation)

A restaurateur who demonstrates creativity in entrepreneurship and integrity in restaurant operations. Must have been in the restaurant business for at least 10 years. Must not have been nominated for a James Beard Foundation chef award in the past five years.

  • Hugh Acheson, Atlanta (Empire State South, Five & Ten, The National, and others)
  • Paul Bartolotta and Joe Bartolotta, The Bartolotta Restaurants, Milwaukee (Ristorante Bartolotta, Harbor House, Lake Park Bistro, and others)
  • JoAnn Clevenger, Upperline, New Orleans
  • Richard DeShantz and Tolga Sevdik, Richard DeShantz Restaurant Group, Pittsburgh (Poulet Bleu, Fish nor Fowl, Butcher and the Rye, and others)
  • Benjamin Goldberg and Max Goldberg, Strategic Hospitality, Nashville (The Catbird Seat, The Patterson House, Henrietta Red, and others)
  • Ruth Gresser, Pizzeria Paradiso, Washington, D.C. (Pizzeria Paradiso, Birreria Paradiso)
  • Martha Hoover, Patachou Inc., Indianapolis (Café Patachou, Petite Chou, Public Greens, and others)
  • Rob Katz and Kevin Boehm, Boka Restaurant Group, Chicago (Boka, Girl & the Goat, Momotaro, and others)
  • Ed Kenney, Honolulu (Town, Mud Hen Water, Mahina & Sun’s, and others)
  • Brenda Langton and Timothy Kane, Spoonriver, Minneapolis
  • Anthony Myint and Karen Leibowitz, San Francisco (Mission Chinese Food, The Perennial, Commonwealth)
  • Akkapong (Earl) Ninsom, Portland, OR (Langbaan, Hat Yai, PaaDee, and others)
  • Ken Oringer, Boston (Little Donkey, Toro, Uni, and others)
  • Steve Palmer, The Indigo Road, Charleston, SC (The Macintosh, Oak Steakhouse, Indaco, and others)
  • Julie Petrakis and James Petrakis, Swine Family Restaurant Group, Orlando, FL (The Ravenous Pig, Cask & Larder, The Polite Pig, and others)
  • Alex Raij and Eder Montero, NYC (La Vara, Txikito, Saint Julivert Fisherie, and others)
  • Ethan Stowell, Ethan Stowell Restaurants, Seattle (Ballard Pizza Co., Bramling Cross, Cortina, and others)
  • Tracy Vaught, H Town Restaurant Group, Houston (Hugo’s, Caracol, Xochi, and others)
  • Jason Wang, Xi’an Famous Foods, NYC
  • Ellen Yin, High Street Hospitality Group, Philadelphia (Fork, High Street on Market, High Street on Hudson)

Outstanding Service

A restaurant in operation for five or more years that demonstrates consistency and exceptional thoughtfulness in hospitality and service.

  • Back Bay Grill, Portland, ME
  • Birrieria Zaragoza, Chicago
  • Brigtsen’s, New Orleans
  • Canlis, Seattle
  • Chef Vola’s, Atlantic City, NJ
  • Frasca Food and Wine, Boulder, CO
  • The French Room, Dallas
  • Gibsons Bar & Steakhouse, Chicago
  • Hugo’s, Houston
  • Kai Restaurant, Chandler, AZ
  • Kimball House, Decatur, GA
  • Mama J’s, Richmond, VA
  • Marcel’s by Robert Wiedmaier, Washington, C.
  • n/naka, Los Angeles
  • Peking Gourmet Inn, Falls Church, VA
  • Saison, San Francisco
  • Swan Oyster Depot, San Francisco
  • Tony’s, Houston
  • Victoria & Albert’s, Orlando, FL
  • Zingerman’s Roadhouse, Ann Arbor, MI

Outstanding Wine Program (Presented by Robert Mondavi Winery)

A restaurant or bar that demonstrates excellence in wine service through a carefully considered wine list and a well-informed approach to helping customers choose and drink wine.

  • Bacchanal, New Orleans
  • The Bachelor Farmer, Minneapolis
  • Bar Marco, Pittsburgh
  • Benu, San Francisco
  • The Butcher Shop, Boston
  • Cote, NYC
  • element 47 at the Little Nell, Aspen, CO
  • Great China, Berkeley, CA
  • Davenport, Portland, OR
  • henry, Boston
  • Income Tax, Chicago
  • L’Oursin, Seattle
  • Lucky Palace, Bossier City, LA
  • Miller Union, Atlanta
  • Night + Market, Los Angeles
  • Ops, Brooklyn, NY
  • Pappas Bros. Steakhouse at the Galleria, Houston
  • Spiaggia, Chicago
  • Stems & Skins, North Charleston, SC
  • Tail Up Goat, Washington, C.

Outstanding Wine, Spirits, or Beer Producer

A beer, wine, or spirits producer who demonstrates consistency and exceptional skill in his or her craft.

  • An Bui, Mekong and The Answer Brewpub, Richmond, VA
  • Cathy Corison, Corison Winery, St. Helena, CA
  • Rutger de Vink, RdV Vineyards, Delaplane, VA
  • Dave Green, Skagit Valley Malting, Burlington, WA
  • Deirdre Heekin, La Garagista, Bethel, VT
  • Nancy Irelan, Red Tail Ridge Winery, Penn Yan, NY
  • Drew Kulsveen, Willett Distillery, Bardstown, KY
  • Todd Leopold and Scott Leopold, Leopold Bros., Denver
  • Sean Lilly Wilson, Fullsteam Brewery, Durham, NC
  • Ann Marshall and Scott Blackwell, High Wire Distilling Co., Charleston, SC
  • Steve Matthiasson, Matthiasson Wines, Napa, CA
  • Kim McPherson, McPherson Cellars, Lubbock, TX
  • Meredith Meyer Grelli, Wigle Whiskey, Pittsburgh
  • Yoshihiro Sako, Den Sake Brewery, Oakland, CA
  • Jordan Salcito, Ramona, NYC
  • Mike Sauer, Red Willow Vineyard, Wapato, WA
  • Jeffrey Stuffings, Jester King Brewery, Austin
  • Rob Tod, Allagash Brewing Company, Portland, ME
  • Mhairi Voelsgen, broVo Spirits, Woodinville, WA
  • Lance Winters, St. George Spirits, Alameda, CA

Rising Star Chef of the Year (Presented by S.Pellegrino® Sparkling Natural Mineral Water)

A chef age 30 or younger who displays exceptional talent, character, and leadership ability, and who is likely to make a significant impact in years to come.

  • Rachel Bennett, The Library, St. Petersburg, FL
  • Jay Blackinton, Aelder/Hogstone’s Wood Oven, Orcas Island, WA
  • Nick Bognar, Nippon Tei, St. Louis
  • Ana Castro, Coquette, New Orleans
  • Valerie Chang and Nando Chang, Itamae, Miami
  • Calvin Davis, Freshwater, Kansas City, MO
  • Alisha Elenz, MFK, Chicago
  • Evan Gaudreau, Renzo, Charleston, SC
  • Rikki Giambruno, Hyacinth, St. Paul, MN
  • Becca Hegarty, Bitter Ends Luncheonette, Pittsburgh
  • Alexander Hong, Sorrel, San Francisco
  • Jesse Ito, Royal Izakaya, Philadelphia
  • Irene Li, Mei Mei, Boston
  • Giselle Miller, Menton, Boston
  • Shota Nakajima, Adana, Seattle
  • Kwame Onwuachi, Kith and Kin, Washington, C.
  • Ian Redshaw, Lampo Neapolitan Pizzeria, Charlottesville, VA
  • Jonathan “Jonny” Rhodes, Restaurant Indigo, Houston
  • Samantha Sanz, Talavera at the Four Seasons, Scottsdale, AZ
  • Lena Sareini, Selden Standard, Detroit
  • Cassie Shortino, Tratto, Phoenix
  • Nolan Wynn, Banshee, Atlanta
  • Jonathan Yao, Kato, Los Angeles

Best Chefs

Chefs who set high culinary standards and also demonstrate integrity and admirable leadership skills in their respective regions. A nominee may be from any kind of dining establishment but 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) 

  • Thai Dang and Danielle Dang, HaiSous Vietnamese Kitchen, Chicago
  • Diana Dávila, Mi Tocaya Antojería, Chicago
  • Paul Fehribach, Big Jones, Chicago
  • Norberto Garita, El Barzon, Detroit
  • Jason Hammel, Lula Café, Chicago
  • Brian Jupiter, Frontier, Chicago
  • Beverly Kim and Johnny Clark, Parachute, Chicago
  • Anthony Lombardo, SheWolf, Detroit
  • Abbi Merriss, Bluebeard, Indianapolis
  • Ethan Pikas, Cellar Door Provisions, Chicago
  • David Posey and Anna Posey, Elske, Chicago
  • Iliana Regan, Kitsune, Chicago
  • James Rigato, Mabel Gray, Hazel Park, MI
  • Jose Salazar, Mita’s, Cincinnati
  • Noah Sandoval, Oriole, Chicago
  • Steven Oakley, Oakleys Bistro, Indianapolis
  • Genevieve Vang, Bangkok 96, Dearborn, MI
  • Jill Vedaa, Salt, Lakewood, OH
  • Kate Williams, Lady of the House, Detroit
  • Lee Wolen, Boka, Chicago

Best Chef: Mid-Atlantic (D.C., DE, MD, NJ, PA, VA) 

  • Joey Baldino, Zeppoli, Collingswood, NJ
  • Sandeep “Sunny” Baweja, Lehja, Richmond, VA
  • Jamilka Borges, The Independent Brewing Company, Pittsburgh
  • Amy Brandwein, Centrolina, Washington, C.
  • Erik Bruner-Yang, Brothers and Sisters, Washington, C.
  • Kristin Butterworth, Lautrec, Farmington, PA
  • Tom Cunanan, Bad Saint, Washington, C.
  • Nicholas Elmi, Laurel, Philadelphia
  • Randy Forrester, Osteria Radici, Allentown, NJ
  • Jerome Grant, Sweet Home Café, Washington, C.
  • Haidar Karoum, Chloë, Washington, C.
  • Matthew Kern, Heirloom, Lewes, DE
  • Rich Landau, Vedge, Philadelphia
  • Cristina Martinez, South Philly Barbacoa, Philadelphia
  • Dan Richer, Razza Pizza Artigianale, Jersey City, NJ
  • Jon Sybert, Tail Up Goat, Washington, C.
  • Kevin Tien, Himitsu, Washington, C.
  • Cindy Wolf, Charleston, Baltimore
  • Nobu Yamazaki, Sushi Taro, Washington, C.
  • Wei Zhu, Chengdu Gourmet, Pittsburgh

Best Chef: Midwest (IA, KS, MN, MO, NE, ND, SD, WI) 

  • Dane Baldwin, The Diplomat, Milwaukee
  • Karen Bell, Bavette La Boucherie, Milwaukee
  • Thomas Boemer, In Bloom, St. Paul, MN
  • Steven Brown, Tilia, Minneapolis
  • Michael Corvino, Corvino Supper Club & Tasting Room, Kansas City, MO
  • Daniel del Prado, Martina, Minneapolis
  • Linda Duerr, The Restaurant at 1900, Mission Woods, KS
  • Michael Gallina, Vicia, St. Louis
  • Nicholas Goellner, The Antler Room, Kansas City, MO
  • Jonny Hunter, Forequarter, Madison, WI
  • Dan Jacobs and Dan Van Rite, EsterEv, Milwaukee
  • Ann Kim, Young Joni, Minneapolis
  • Lona Luo, Lona’s Lil Eats, St. Louis
  • Jamie Malone, Grand Café, Minneapolis
  • Jesse Mendica, Olive + Oak, Webster Groves, MO
  • Tim Nicholson, The Boiler Room, Omaha, NE
  • Christina Nguyen, Hai Hai, Minneapolis
  • Karyn Tomlinson, Corner Table, Minneapolis
  • Joe Tripp, Harbinger, Des Moines, IA
  • Ny Vongsaly, Billie-Jean, Clayton, MO

Best Chef: New York City (Five Boroughs) 

  • Cosme Aguilar, Casa Enrique
  • Emma Bengtsson, Aquavit
  • Rawia Bishara, Tanoreen, Brooklyn, NY
  • Amanda Cohen, Dirt Candy
  • Billy Durney, Hometown Bar-B-Que, Brooklyn, NY
  • Sean Gray, Momofuku Ko
  • Brooks Headley, Superiority Burger
  • Joseph “JJ” Johnson, Henry at Life Hotel
  • Sohui Kim, Insa, Brooklyn, NY
  • Josh Ku and Trigg Brown, Win Son, Brooklyn, NY
  • Angie Mar, Beatrice Inn
  • Kyo Pang, Kopitiam
  • Erik Ramirez, Llama Inn, Brooklyn, NY
  • Ann Redding and Matt Danzer, Uncle Boons
  • Daniela Soto-Innes, Atla
  • Jeremiah Stone and Fabián von Hauske, Wildair
  • Alex Stupak, Empellón Midtown
  • Scott Tacinelli and Angie Rito, Don Angie
  • Jody Williams and Rita Sodi, Via Carota
  • Helen You, Dumpling Galaxy, Queens, NY

Best Chef: Northeast (CT, MA, ME, NH, NY State, RI, VT) 

  • Unmi Abkin, Coco & The Cellar Bar, Easthampton, MA
  • Tyler Anderson, Millwright’s, Simsbury, CT
  • Hannah Black and Carla Perez-Gallardo, Lil’ Deb’s Oasis, Hudson, NY
  • Cara Chigazola-Tobin, Honey Road, Burlington, VT
  • Chad Conley and Greg Mitchell, Palace Diner, Biddeford, ME
  • Krista Kern Desjarlais, The Purple House, North Yarmouth, ME
  • Vien Dobui, Cong Tu Bot, Portland, ME
  • Carl Dooley, The Table at Season to Taste, Cambridge, MA
  • Tiffani Faison, Tiger Mama, Boston
  • Erin French, The Lost Kitchen, Freedom, ME
  • Victor Parra Gonzalez, Las Puertas, Buffalo, NY
  • Seizi Imura, Cafe Sushi, Cambridge, MA
  • Evan Mallett, Black Trumpet, Portsmouth, NH
  • James Mark, North, Providence
  • Tony Messina, Uni, Boston
  • Cassie Piuma, Sarma, Somerville, MA
  • Keiko Suzuki Steinberger, Suzuki’s Sushi Bar, Rockland, ME
  • Benjamin Sukle, Oberlin, Providence, RI
  • Peter Ungár, Tasting Counter, Somerville, MA
  • David Vargas, Vida Cantina, Portsmouth, NH

Best Chef: Northwest (AK, ID, MT, OR, WA, WY) 

  • Jose Chesa, Ataula, Portland, OR
  • Peter Cho, Han Oak, Portland, OR
  • Laura Cole, 229 Parks Restaurant & Tavern, Denali National Park & Preserve, AK
  • Logan Cox, Homer, Seattle
  • Alejandro Cruz, Novo Modern Latin Table, Eugene, OR
  • Eric Donnelly, RockCreek, Seattle
  • Gregory Gourdet, Departure, Portland, OR
  • Eric Johnson, Stateside, Seattle
  • Taichi Kitamura, Sushi Kappo Tamura, Seattle
  • Ha (Christina) Luu and Peter Vuong, Ha VL, Portland, OR
  • Katy Millard, Coquine, Portland, OR
  • Kristen Murray, Måurice, Portland, OR
  • Colin Patterson, Mana Restaurant, Leavenworth, WA
  • Ryan Roadhouse, Nodoguro, Portland, OR
  • Beau Schooler, In Bocca Al Lupo, Juneau, AK
  • Mutsuko Soma, Kamonegi, Seattle
  • Dave Wells, The Dining Room at Chico Hot Springs, Pray, MT
  • Brady Williams, Canlis, Seattle
  • Justin Woodward, Castagna, Portland, OR
  • Rachel Yang and Seif Chirchi, Joule, Seattle

Best Chef: South (AL, AR, Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, FL, LA, MS) 

  • Lindsay Autry, The Regional Kitchen & Public House, West Palm Beach, FL
  • David Bancroft, Acre, Auburn, AL
  • Vishwesh Bhatt, Snackbar, Oxford, MS
  • Bill Briand, Fisher’s Upstairs at Orange Beach Marina, Orange Beach, AL
  • Clay Conley, Buccan, Palm Beach, FL
  • Alex Eaton, The Manship Wood Fired Kitchen, Jackson, MS
  • Jose Enrique, Jose Enrique, San Juan, PR
  • Kristen Essig and Michael Stoltzfus, Coquette, New Orleans
  • Maria Mercedes Grubb, Gallo Negro, San Juan, PR
  • Michael Gulotta, Maypop, New Orleans
  • Mason Hereford, Turkey and the Wolf, New Orleans
  • Timothy Hontzas, Johnny’s Restaurant, Homewood, AL
  • Brad Kilgore, Alter, Miami
  • Niven Patel, Ghee Indian Kitchen, Miami
  • Matthew McClure, The Hive, Bentonville, AR
  • Alex Perry, Vestige, Ocean Springs, MS
  • Jeannie Pierola, Edison: Food+Drink Lab, Tampa, FL
  • Slade Rushing, Brennan’s, New Orleans
  • Melissa Donahue-Talmage, Sweet Melissa’s Café, Sanibel, FL
  • Isaac Toups, Toups’ Meatery, New Orleans

Best Chef: Southeast (GA, KY, NC, SC, TN, WV) 

  • Mashama Bailey, The Grey, Savannah, GA
  • Rebecca Barron, St. John’s Restaurant, Chattanooga, TN
  • Jon Buck, Husk Greenville, Greenville, SC
  • Katie Button, Cúrate, Asheville, NC
  • Gregory Collier, Loft & Cellar, Charlotte, NC
  • Cassidee Dabney, The Barn at Blackberry Farm, Walland, TN
  • Steven Devereaux Greene, Herons, Cary, NC
  • Oscar Diaz, The Cortez, Raleigh, NC
  • Bryan Furman, B’s Cracklin’ BBQ, Atlanta
  • Josh Habiger, Bastion, Nashville
  • Meherwan Irani, Chai Pani, Asheville, NC
  • Kevin Johnson, The Grocery, Charleston, SC
  • Joe Kindred, Kindred, Davidson, NC
  • Cheetie Kumar, Garland, Raleigh, NC
  • Jacques Larson, The Obstinate Daughter, Sullivan’s Island, SC
  • Dean Neff, PinPoint, Wilmington, NC
  • Ryan Smith, Staplehouse, Atlanta
  • Brian So, Spring, Marietta, GA
  • Julia Sullivan, Henrietta Red, Nashville
  • Andrew Ticer and Michael Hudman, Andrew Michael Italian Kitchen, Memphis

Best Chef: Southwest (AZ, CO, NM, OK, TX, UT) 

  • Charleen Badman, FnB, Scottsdale, AZ
  • Kevin Binkley, Binkley’s Restaurant, Phoenix
  • Jen Castle and Blake Spalding, Hell’s Backbone Grill, Boulder, UT
  • Bruno Davaillon, Bullion, Dallas
  • Iliana de la Vega, El Naranjo, Austin
  • Kevin Fink, Emmer & Rye, Austin
  • Michael Fojtasek, Olamaie, Austin
  • Bryce Gilmore, Barley Swine, Austin
  • Caroline Glover, Annette, Aurora, CO
  • Nadia Holguin, Roland’s Cafe Market Bar, Phoenix
  • Ronnie Killen, Killen’s Steakhouse, Pearland, TX
  • Kaiser Lashkari, Himalaya, Houston
  • Steve McHugh, Cured, San Antonio
  • Trong Nguyen, Crawfish & Noodles, Houston
  • Jonathan Perno, Campo at Los Poblanos, Albuquerque, NM
  • Maribel Rivero, Yuyo, Austin
  • Regino Rojas, Purépecha Room by Revolver Taco Lounge, Dallas
  • Silvana Salcido Esparza, Barrio Café Gran Reserva, Phoenix
  • David Uygur, Lucia, Dallas
  • Kelly Whitaker, The Wolf’s Tailor, Denver

Best Chef: West (CA, HI, NV)

  • Genet Agonafer, Meals by Genet, Los Angeles
  • Reem Assil, Reem’s California, Oakland, CA
  • Gabriela Cámara, Cala, San Francisco
  • Michael Cimarusti, Providence, Los Angeles
  • Jeremy Fox, Rustic Canyon, Santa Monica, CA
  • Chris Kajioka and Anthony Rush, Senia, Honolulu
  • Matthew Kammerer, Harbor House Inn, Elk, CA
  • Jessica Koslow, Sqirl, Los Angeles
  • Brandon Rodgers and Ian Scaramuzza, In Situ, San Francisco
  • Travis Lett, Gjelina, Venice, CA
  • Niki Nakayama, n/naka, Los Angeles
  • Dominica Rice-Cisneros, Cosecha Café, Oakland, CA
  • Carlos Salgado, Taco María, Costa Mesa, CA
  • Joshua Skenes, Saison, San Francisco
  • Sheridan Su, Flock and Fowl, Las Vegas
  • James Syhabout, Commis, Oakland, CA
  • Karen Taylor, El Molino Central, Sonoma, CA
  • Pim Techamuanvivit, Kin Khao, San Francisco
  • Kris Yenbamroong, Night + Market, Los Angeles
  • Claudette Zepeda-Wilkins, El Jardín, San Diego

About the 2019 James Beard Awards

The 2019 James Beard Awards celebrations begin in New York City on Friday, April 26, 2019, with the James Beard Media Awards, an exclusive event honoring the nation’s top cookbook authors, culinary broadcast producers and hosts, and food journalists that will take place at Pier Sixty at Chelsea Piers.

The events then move to Chicago, beginning with the Leadership Awards dinner on Sunday, May 5, 2019, at which honorees will be recognized for their work in creating a more healthful, sustainable, and just food world. The James Beard Awards Gala will take place on Monday, May 6, 2019, at the Lyric Opera of Chicago. During the event, which is open to the public, awards for the Restaurant and Chef and Restaurant Design categories will be handed out, along with special achievement awards Humanitarian of the Year, Lifetime Achievement, Design Icon, and America’s Classics. A gala reception will immediately follow, featuring chefs and beverage professionals from across the country, all of whom are involved in the Foundation’s Impact Programs.

The 2019 James Beard Awards are proudly hosted by Choose Chicago and the Illinois Restaurant Association and presented in association with Chicago O’Hare and Midway International Airports and Magellan Corporation as well as the following partners: Premier Sponsors: All-Clad Metalcrafters, American Airlines, HMSHost, Lavazza, S.Pellegrino® Sparkling Natural Mineral Water ; Supporting Sponsors: Hyatt, National Restaurant Association™, Robert Mondavi Winery, Skuna Bay Salmon, TABASCO® Sauce, Valrhona, White Claw® Hard Seltzer, Windstar Cruises; Gala Reception Sponsors: Dogfish Head Craft Brewery, Ecolab, Front of the House®, Kendall College, Segura Viudas USA with additional support from Chefwear, Loacker and VerTerra Dinnerware.

Established in 1990, the James Beard Awards recognize culinary professionals for excellence and achievement in their fields and further the Foundation’s mission to celebrate, nurture, and honor chefs and other leaders making America’s food culture more delicious, diverse, and sustainable for everyone. Each award category has an individual committee made up of industry professionals who volunteer their time to oversee the policies, procedures, and selection of judges for their respective Awards programs. All James Beard Award winners receive a certificate and a medallion engraved with the James Beard Foundation Awards insignia.

About the James Beard Foundation

The James Beard Foundation’s mission is to promote good food for good™. For more than 30 years, the James Beard Foundation has highlighted the centrality of food culture in our daily lives. Through the James Beard Awards, unique dining experiences at the James Beard House and around the country, scholarships, hands-on learning, and a variety of industry programs that educate and empower leaders in our community, the Foundation has built a platform for chefs and asserted the power of gastronomy to drive behavior, culture, and policy change around food. To that end, the Foundation has also created signature impact-oriented initiatives that include our Women’s Leadership Programs, aimed at addressing the gender imbalance in the culinary industry; advocacy training through our Chefs Boot Camp for Policy and Change; and the James Beard Foundation Leadership Awards, which shine a spotlight on successful change makers. The organization is committed to giving chefs and their colleagues a voice and the tools they need to make the world more sustainable, equitable, and delicious for everyone. For more information, please visit jamesbeard.org  and follow @beardfoundation on InstagramTwitter, and Facebook.

Media Contacts:
Mary Blanton Ogushwitz / Jane Shapiro