On February 19, 2014, the James Beard Foundation announced their Restaurant and Chef Award semifinalists which includes several NC chefs and restaurants among the list! Why does that matter? Because winning a James Beard Award is comparable to winning a Grammy or Oscar but only for the food and beverage industry.
North Carolina appears in 5 categories with 8 semifinalists competing for Best Chef: Southeast. Phoebe Lawless from Scratch landed in the Outstanding Pastry Chef category while Giorgios Bakatsias of Giorgios Hospitality Group is up for Outstanding Restaurateur; both of which are located in Durham. Heading towards the western NC, Katie Button of Cúrate in Asheville is on the list for Rising Star Chef of the Year.
The 8 chefs who made it as a Best Chef: Southeast semifinalist include:
- Colin Bedford, The Fearrington House Restaurant in Pittsboro (Fearrington House is also vying for Outstanding Restaurant)
- Ashley Christensen, Poole’s Downtown Diner in Raleigh
- Scott Crawford, Herons at the Umstead Hotel and Spa in Cary
- Vivian Howard, Chef & the Farmer in Kinston
- Scott Howell, Nana’s in Durham
- Meherwan Irani, Chai Pani in Asheville
- Matt Kelly, Mateo in Durham
- Aaron Vandemark, Panciuto in Hillsborough
On March 18th the top 5 nominees in each category will be announced in Chicago and the foundation will declare the winners at a red carpet event on May 5th at the Lincoln Center in New York city. To learn more about the James Beard Awards visit www.jamesbeard.org/awards.
Congratulations and good luck to the all of the semifinalists![ct id="ct_Address_text_c29d" property="title | description | value"]
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