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Round of Applause!

Chef Kevin Gillespie / Photo by Angie Mosier

Monday, at gorgeous Lowndes Grove plantation in Charleston, SC, the James Beard Award nominations were presented to a group of one hundred fifty guests. As Southerners, we couldn’t be more proud to see some of our favorites recognized, as well as some up-and-comers we were rooting for.

Kevin Gillespie, who was featured in our February.March issue, was nominated for the American Cooking book award with his newest volume, Fire in My Belly. Nathalie Dupree, another magazine contributor, was also nominated for the same award along with her co-author, Cynthia Graubert, for Mastering the Art of Southern Cooking. Rounding out the American Cooking category was Southern Comfort: A New Take on the Recipes We Grew Up With by Allison Vines-Rushing and Slade Rushing. That’s some serious Southern representation!

Photo by Chris Granger
Chef Sue Zemanick / Photo by Chris Granger

Sue Zemanick / Best Chef nominees for both the South and Southeast are just as exciting. Justin Devillier of La Petite Grocery (New Orleans), Jeff McInnis of Yardbird Southern Table (Miami Beach), Tory McPhail of Commander’s Palace (New Orleans), Alon Shaya of Domenica (New Orleans), and Sue Zemanick of Gautreau’s (New Orleans) all are well-deserved contenders for the South. As for the Southeast representation, we are jazzed to see Ashely Christensen of Poole’s Downtown Diner (Raleigh), Edward Lee of 610 Magnolia (Louisville), Joseph Lenn of The Barn at Blackberry Farm (Walland, TN), Steven Satterfield of Miller Union (Atlanta), and Tandy Wilson of City House (Nashville).

Everyone waits with baited breath to see who will win Best New Restaurant. To be fair, we are not surprised to see Mike Lata’s The Ordinary of Charleston, South Carolina on the list. The city has been buzzing about this place long before it ever opened and now that it is people are still talking about it with much fervor. The competition is stiff, however, alongside restaurants in New York, Chicago, and San Francisco. mike lata trigger fish Jwb web

Photo by Ben Williams
Chef Mike Lata / Photo by Jonathan Boncek

We can’t forget about the Outstanding Chef and Outstanding Restaurant nominations. Sean Brock of McCrady’s represents the South for Outstanding Chef, and long-time favorites like Highlands Bar and Grill in Birmingham and August in New Orleans are looking at the Outstanding Restaurant award.

There’s no doubt that it will be a tight race this year with all the amazing talent up for acclaim. Of course, it’s honor enough simply to be nominated for such prestige. This list is only a small sampling of the restaurants, chefs, wine programs, bar programs and more that the Foundation acknowledged this year. Click here for the comprehensive list.

Again, congratulations to all the amazing talent! Looking forward to the final decisions!

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