It’s an exciting day today in the world of food and wine, as the James Beard Semifinalists have been announced. These annual awards have been given to the who’s who among culinary professionals since 1990 and are awarded to those who exemplify excellence and achievement in their field and further the Foundation’s mission to celebrate, nurture, and honor America’s diverse culinary heritage through programs that educate and inspire. In addition, many of the semifinalists truly embrace the farm-to-table movement, making us even more joyful.
While the excitement is buzzing around the entire country, we are thrilled to see so much representation among chefs and restaurants right here in the Sunshine State.
Now, for the list of James Beard semifinalists in Florida for 2017:
BEST NEW RESTAURANT
OUTSTANDING PASTRY CHEF
Zak Stern, Zak the Baker
Richard Gonzmart, Columbia Restaurant Group, Tampa, FL (The Columbia, Ulele, Goody Goody)
RISING STAR CHEF OF THE YEAR
Bradley Kilgore, Alter, MiamI
BEST CHEF: SOUTH
Kathleen Blake, The Rusty Spoon, Orlando
Clay Conley, Buccan, Palm Beach
Deme Lomas, Niu Kitchen, Miami
Brandon McGlamery, Luma on Park, Winter Park, FL
Christopher Ponte, Café Ponte, Clearwater, FL
Finalists will be announced on March 15.