Louis chefs, two restaurants among James Beard Award semifinalists

Butcher & Bee pastry chef Cynthia Wong makes another appearance as a JBF semifinalist this year- JONATHAN BONCEK

Butcher & Bee pastry chef Cynthia Wong makes another appearance as a JBF semifinalist this year- JONATHAN BONCEK

The James Beard Foundation Awards Gala will be held at the Lyric Opera of Chicago on Monday, May 7, 2018 where the winners will be announced.

The Forge restaurant has been nominated for Outstanding Wine Program and Coral Gables' Palme d'Or has been nominated for Outstanding Service.

Chefs Chris Kajioka of Senia and Ed Kenney of Town, Mud Hen Water, Kaimuki Superette and Mahina and Sun's are semifinalists in the category of best chef in the western region, which also includes California and Nevada. ChoLon and Williams & Graham have also made the list for Best New Restaurant and Outstanding Beverage Program, respectively. The Foundation will announce the final nominees for award categories, as well as the nominees for the Media and Restaurant Design Awards, March 14 at 9:30 a.m. Ashley Christensen of Poole's Diner in Raleigh is up for the national award Outstanding Chef and David Bauer of Farm & Sparrow in Asheville is on the list for Outstanding Baker.

Four Richmonders were awarded coveted 2018 James Beard semi-finalist nominations, the top food award in the nation; The Oscars of food, essentially. The Bartolotta Restaurants in Milwaukee are semifinalists for Outstanding Restauranteur. Beard was a pioneer chef who was at the forefront of the culinary revolution that changed American food forever in the 1950's.

Brad Kilgore, chef/owner at Alter in Wynwood, Brava in the Adrienne Arsht Center, Niven Patel (Ghee Indian Kitchen in Downtown Dadeland and the Design District), Lindsay Autry (The Regional Kitchen & Public House in West Palm Beach) and Clay Conley (Buccan in Palm Beach) have been long-listed for Best Chef: South. In a growing sign of the city's food excellence, St. Louis can boast the Best Chef: Midwest victor for the last two years running - Gerard Craft won for Niche in 2016 and Kevin Nashan for Sidney Street Cafe in 2017. Hansen's Sno-Bliz, Mosca's and Willie Mae's Scotch House are other New Orleans businesses to win the America's Classics award in past years. The three that came away with h...

Lena Sareini, pastry chef at Detroit's Selden Standard in Detroit's Midtown, is a semifinalist for Rising Star Chef of the Year.

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