The 2017 James Beard nominations-for excellence in the restaurant and bar industry-were announced today and Baltimore nabbed three of the honors.
Both Arnaud's French 75 Bar and Cure are semifinalists in the Outstanding Bar Program category, Donald Link is up for an Outstanding Chef award and Kelly Fields of Willa Jean is in the running for the Outstanding Pastry Chef award (not to be confused with the Outstanding Baker award, for which New Orleans had no semifinalists).
The Foundation has nominated FnB in Scottsdale for two awards this year.
Gabe Barker of Pizzeria Mercato in Carrboro was named a semifinalist for the James Beard Rising Star Chef of the Year.
This is the fifth time that Silvana Salcido Esparza has made the list for the Best Chef: Southwest award, which recognizes "chefs who have set new or consistent standards of excellence in their respective regions".
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The Beard Awards are the culinary world's equivalent of the Oscars, and winning an award - or even being nominated - can mean more customers for a restaurant and an upward trajectory for a chef.
Also, one Milwaukee restaurant is one of the semifinalists for the Outstanding Restaurateurs award.
Senia, at 75 N. King Street, was nominated in the Best New Restaurant category, while Vino, at 500 Ala Moana in Waterfront Plaza, was nominated in the Outstanding Wine Program category. She pauses. "I have to check this James Beard Award".
This list will be narrowed down to a much shorter selection of award finalists that will be announced on Wednesday, March 15, in Los Angeles. The announcements are broadcast online via the Foundation's Facebook Live feed.
Judges culled the list from 24,000 online entries, whittling it down to semifinalists in 21 categories, including 19 local nominees.