The James Beard Awards are to restaurants and chefs what the Oscars are to movies and actors. For those of us that are total “foodies” these awards set the standard for successes in the restaurant industry and is a barometer for keeping up with food and restaurant trends. The finalists for America’s highest culinary honors have been selected and the winners will be announced the second week of May.
James Beard (1903-1985) was a champion of American cuisine who helped educate and mentor generations of professional chefs and food enthusiasts. Beard appeared on the first cooking shows and has written dozens of cookbooks, his passion for enjoying good food was matched only by his desire to educate others on the importance of eating well.
After his death, Beard’s
brownstone in New York City’s Greenwich Village was converted into a historical culinary center. In addition to being the headquarters for the Foundation, the James Beard Houseis a place where Foundation members, the press, and the general public are invited to sample creations of both established and emerging chefs from across the country and around the globe. I highly recommend a special occasion splurge on a reservation there to enjoy a tasting menu from a visiting master chef!
The annual James Beard Foundation Awards are held on the first Monday in May and honors the finest chefs, restaurants, journalists, cookbook authors, restaurant designers, and electronic media professionals in the country. Presented at Avery Fisher Hall at Lincoln Center, nominees and winners congregate for a weekend of events in New York City that has become the gastronomic highlight of the year. The awards end with a reception tasting of the signature dishes of the James Beard Foundation’s very best chefs. Yum! Click here for this year’s nominees.
- James Beard Awards 2012: Restaurant And Chef Semifinalists Revealed (huffingtonpost.com)
- Chicago Reps Hard in James Beard Awards (salutadventures.com)
- James Beard Semi-Finalists Announced (chicagoist.com)
- Hotels offer VIP culinary experiences for New York travelers (gadling.com)
- PHOTOS: James Beard Award Finalists Announced (huffingtonpost.com)