For those who don’t know, the James Beard award is presented by the James Beard Foundation to recognize those who excel in cuisine, culinary education and culinary writing. To put it plainly, it is to food as what the Grammy’s are to music. The founder, James Beard himself was an American cookbook author, teacher, columnist and television personality that has captured the hearts of many Americans. Beard was a champion of American cuisine who taught and mentored generations of professional chefs and food enthusiasts alike as well.
With that, we here at IM Boston are proud to give you the roster of the semifinalists for the different categories and awards that will be given next month. The greatest part of it all is that the people mentioned below are based in Boston, and we’re here to cheer on them and recognize them accordingly!
BEST CHEF: NORTHEAST CATEGORY
- Karen Akunowicz, Myers + Chang, Boston, MA
- Unmi Abkin, Coco & The Cellar Bar, Easthampton, Massachusetts
- Alex Crabb, Asta, Boston
- Cassie Piuma, Sarma, Somerville, Massachusetts
- Susan Regis, Shepard, Cambridge, Massachusetts
- Marc Sheehan, Loyal Nine, Cambridge, Massachusetts
- Garrett Harker, Boston – for Eastern Standard Kitchen & Drinks, Island Creek Oyster Bar, Row 34 etc
- Ken Oringer, Boston – for Uni, Toro, Coppa, etc
RISING STAR CHEF OF THE YEAR
- Ana Sortun, Oleana, Cambridge, MA
OUTSTANDING PASTRY CHEF
- Maura Kilpatrick, Oleana, Cambridge, MA
OUTSTANDING WINE PROGRAM
- O Ya, Boston
BEST NEW RESTAURANT
- SRV, Boston, MA
With that long roster we’ve just served, it’s important to note that you have about a month left before the actual ceremony to go and see why our local restaurants were nominated to receive these awards in the first place! It’s really awe-inspiring to live in a city full of life with the best people around, great sports team and even the best food all around the nation.