March 24, 2018

Jonny Hunter and L'Etoile named James Beard semifinalists

15 February 2018, 08:58 | Winston Chapman

Chef Mashama Bailey at The Grey

Chef Mashama Bailey at The Grey

Steve Palmer, The Indigo Road (The Macintosh, Oak Steakhouse, The Oak Table, Indaco, and others), nominated for Outstanding Restaurateur. ChoLon and Williams & Graham have also made the list for Best New Restaurant and Outstanding Beverage Program, respectively. Award finalists will be announced in Philly on March 14.

Also, on the Best Chefs:South semifinalist list is Bill Briand, who works at Fisher's in Orange Beach, Florida. This marks the fifth time Bhatt has been nominated for the award.

The James Beard Foundation said its roster of nominees was selected from some 23,000 chefs, restaurants and bars submitted by the public during an open call last fall. Eligible candidates must have been working as a chef for the past five years.

Last year, the Best Chef: South award went to Rebecca Wilcomb of Herbsaint. Award description: A chef or baker who prepares desserts, pastries, or breads in a restaurant, and who serves as a national standard bearer of excellence. Brigtsen's, owned and operated by chef Frank Brigtsen and his wife Marna, is nominated for best service. The Ordinary was nominated as Best New Restaurant in 2013.

Evin and Evrim Dogu, co-owners of Sub Rosa Bakery, were named a semifinalist for Outstanding Baker.

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Birmingham's Highlands Bar and Grill is a semifinalist for the country's most outstanding restaurant for the 10 consecutive year. 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.

The local restaurant scene has evolved in recent years, and that's showing in these type of awards.

New Orleans had almost a dozen finalists in the running for the James Beard Foundation awards on Monday night.

Chef Nina Compton arrived in New Orleans in 2015 with a fan base already in place thanks to her star turn on "Top Chef" the year before.

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