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  • Writer's pictureMary Ann


Humanitarian of the Year Winner José Andrés Multiple James Beard Award–Winning Chef; Owner, ThinkFoodGroup; Founder, World Central Kitchen

Winners were announced this evening, Monday, May 7, 2018, at the James Beard Foundation Awards at Lyric Opera of Chicago. During a ceremony emceed by Carla Hall, co-host of ABC’s The Chew, awards were presented in the Restaurant and Chef and Restaurant Design categories, as well as several special achievement awards, including Who’s Who of Food & Beverage in America, Lifetime Achievement, Design Icon, America’s Classics, and Humanitarian of the Year.

Industry leaders from across the country attended the highly anticipated ceremony, whose theme this year was “Rise,” celebrating the collective spirit of the culinary community and the power of food. Attendees and participants donned vibrant pins stating what they rise for, from “equality” to “locally sourced food” to “no waste” and “integrity.” In keeping with the theme, the nearly 30 gala reception chefs consisted mostly of former James Beard Foundation Chefs Boot Camp for Policy and Change participants; JBF Chefs Boot Camps are retreats wherein civically and politically minded chefs have a unique opportunity to become more effective leaders for food-system change; they receive advocacy and media training while learning about important issues, challenges, and opportunities within the food world. Their thoughtful dishes fed the nearly 2,000 attendees at this year’s Awards gala.

Established in 1990, the James Beard Awards recognize culinary professionals for excellence and achievement in their fields and furthers the Foundation’s mission to celebrate, nurture, and honor chefs and other leaders making America's food culture more delicious, diverse, and sustainable for everyone. Each award category has an individual committee made up of industry professionals who volunteer their time to oversee the policies, procedures, and selection of judges for their respective Awards program. All JBF Award winners receive a certificate and a medallion engraved with the James Beard Foundation Awards insignia. There are no cash prizes.

The 2018 James Beard Foundation Awards are proudly hosted by Choose Chicago and the Illinois Restaurant Association and presented in association with Chicago O’Hare and Midway International Airports as well as the following partners: Premier Sponsors: All-Clad Metalcrafters, American Airlines, HMSHost, HOODZ: a BELFOR Company, Illinois Office of Tourism, Lavazza, S.Pellegrino® Sparkling Natural Mineral Water, TABASCO® Sauce, Woodford Reserve Bourbon; Supporting Sponsors: Breville® , Corporate Essentials, Hyatt, National Restaurant Association™, Robert Mondavi Winery, Skuna Bay Salmon, Taylor Precision Products, Valrhona, Windstar Cruises; Gala Reception Sponsors: Dogfish Head Craft Brewery, Ecolab, Front of the House® , Kendall College, Mercedes-Benz; with additional support from: Chefwear, Emmi Roth, Loacker, and VerTerra Dinnerware

Here are the winners of the 2018 James Beard Foundation Restaurant and Chef Awards. Congrats to all!

2018 James Beard Foundation Restaurant Design Awards

75 Seats and Under (For the best restaurant design or renovation in North America since January 1, 2015) Firm: The MP Shift Designers: Amy Morris, Anna Polonsky, and Julie Nerenberg Project: De Maria, NYC

76 Seats and Over (For the best restaurant design or renovation in North America since January 1, 2015) Firms: Aidlin Darling Design with a l m project Designers: Joshua Aidlin, David Darling, Adam Rouse, and Andrea Lenardin Madden Project: In Situ, San Francisco

Design Icon The American Restaurant Kansas City, Missouri

2018 James Beard Foundation Restaurant and Chef Awards

Best New Restaurant  JuneBaby Seattle

Outstanding Baker (Presented by Taylor Precision Products) Belinda Leong and Michel Suas B. Patisserie San Francisco

Outstanding Bar Program (Presented by Woodford Reserve Bourbon) Cure New Orleans

Outstanding Chef (Presented by All-Clad Metalcrafters) Gabrielle Hamilton Prune NYC

Outstanding Pastry Chef (Presented by Lavazza) Dolester Miles Highlands Bar & Grill Birmingham, AL 

Outstanding Restaurant (Presented by S.Pellegrino® Sparkling Natural Mineral Water) Highlands Bar & Grill Birmingham, AL 

Outstanding Restaurateur Caroline Styne The Lucques Group (Lucques, a.o.c., Tavern, and others)  Los Angeles

Outstanding Service  Zuni Café San Francisco

Outstanding Wine Program (Presented by Robert Mondavi Winery) FIG Charleston, SC

Outstanding Wine, Spirits, or Beer Professional  Miljenko Grgich Grgich Hills Estate Rutherford, CA

Rising Star Chef of the Year (Presented by S.Pellegrino® Sparkling Natural Mineral Water) Camille Cogswell Zahav Philadelphia 

Best Chef: Great Lakes (IL, IN, MI, OH) Abraham Conlon Fat Rice Chicago

Best Chef: Mid-Atlantic (D.C., DE, MD, NJ, PA, VA) Jeremiah Langhorne The Dabney Washington, D.C. 

Best Chef: Midwest (IA, KS, MN, MO, NE, ND, SD, WI) Gavin Kaysen Spoon and Stable Minneapolis

Best Chef: New York City (Five Boroughs) Missy Robbins Lilia Brooklyn, NY 

Best Chef: Northeast (CT, MA, ME, NH, NY STATE, RI, VT) Karen Akunowicz Myers + Chang Boston

Best Chef: Northwest (AK, ID, MT, OR, WA, WY) Edouardo Jordan Salare Seattle

Best Chef: South (AL, AR, FL, LA, MS, PR) Nina Compton Compère Lapin New Orleans

Best Chef: Southeast (GA, KY, NC, SC, TN, WV) Rodney Scott Rodney Scott’s BBQ Charleston, SC

Best Chef: Southwest (AZ, CO, NM, OK, TX, UT) Alex Seidel Mercantile Dining & Provision Denver

Best Chef: West (CA, HI, NV) Dominique Crenn Atelier Crenn San Francisco 

2018 James Beard Foundation Who’s Who of Food & Beverage in America Inductees

Jody Adams Chef/Owner, TRADE, Porto, and Saloniki Boston

Lally Brennan and Ti Adelaide Martin Co-Proprietors, Commander’s Palace New Orleans

Allison Hooper Co-Founder, Vermont Creamery Websterville, VT

Daniel Johnnes Wine Director, The Dinex Group New York City, NY

2018 James Beard Foundation America’s Classics (Presented by TABASCO® Sauce)

Sun Wah  Chicago, IL  Owners: Kelly Cheng, Laura Cheng and Michael Cheng

Galleria Umberto Boston, MA  Owners: Paul Deuterio and Ralph Deuterio 

Los Hernandez Union Gap, WA  Owner: Felipe Hernandez

El Guero Canelo  Tucson, AZ  Owner: Daniel Contreras 

Dong Phuong Bakery New Orleans, LA  Owner: Linh Tran Garza

2018 James Beard Foundation Humanitarian of the Year

José Andrés

Multiple James Beard Award–Winning Chef; Owner, ThinkFoodGroup; Founder, World Central Kitchen

2018 James Beard Foundation Lifetime Achievement Award

Paula Wolfert Multiple James Beard Award–Winning Author

About the James Beard Foundation (JBF)

The James Beard Foundation’s mission is to celebrate, nurture, and honor chefs and other leaders making America’s food culture more delicious, diverse, and sustainable for everyone. For more than 30 years the Foundation has accomplished this mission through programs that highlight food’s central role in our lives. In addition to hosting guest-chef dinners throughout the year at the historic James Beard House in New York City, the Foundation administers the James Beard Awards; grants scholarships for culinary students; produces national events that include our Taste America tour; and creates educational programs for the culinary community and food lovers. The Foundation addresses the growing challenges facing our food system through its Impact Programs, which include the Leadership Awards; Chefs Boot Camp for Policy and Change; Issue Summits; and Culinary Labs. Industry issues, such as gender imbalance and diversity in culinary leadership, are addressed through our Industry Programs. For more information, please visit and follow @beardfoundation on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook.


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