All of this year’s nominees that are #poweredbybento

The James Beard Foundation, widely known for celebrating chefs and key players in the hospitality industry across the country, announced the nominees for their annual James Beard Awards on March 14. After receiving over 23,000 entries, the foundation has selected five finalists for each category. Just like last year, we’d like to congratulate all of the nominees and are proud to share all of the finalists that are #poweredbybento.

Empellón Midtown, Manhattan, NY

Empellón interior

Empellón Midtown's main dining area.

Chef Alex Stupak’s Midtown flagship restaurant offers innovative and upscale Mexican fare in a boldly-designed space. Stupak makes Mexican cuisine shine with his playful imagination and uses his pastry background to create an incredible dining experience from start to finish.

Nominated for: Best New Restaurant & Best Chef: New York City

Dianna Daoheung, Black Seed Bagels, Manhattan, NY   

Chef Dianna Daoheung

Chef Dianna Daoheung. Photo: Black Seed Bagels for Food & Wine

Daoheung is the co-owner and baking mastermind behind this popular Montreal-style wood-fired bagel chain. She also drove the initiative to launch the shop’s pastry program, offering a variety of cookies, brownies, and other baked goods.

Nominated for: Outstanding Baker

Bar Agricole, San Francisco, CA

Bar Agricole

The lively outdoor bar scene at Bar Agricole.

This contemporary bar and restaurant is known for its seasonal craft cocktails made from spirits distilled using traditional farmhouse practices, and Northern California cuisine cooked with ingredients sourced from local organic and biodynamic farms.

Nominated for: Outstanding Bar Program

David Kinch, Manresa, Los Gatos, CA

david kinch

Manresa's chef and proprietor, David Kinch.

Chef/proprietor David Kinch’s career path has put him at the forefront of new contemporary California cuisine. His culinary philosophy is influenced by ingredient-driven cooking and through modern techniques he has studied around the world.

Nominated for: Outstanding Chef

Kelly Fields, Willa Jean, New Orleans

kelly fields

Willa Jean's chef and partner, Kelly Fields.

Chef/Partner Kelly Fields fulfilled her dream of opening a Southern-inspired restaurant and bakery in 2015 with Willa Jean, named after her grandmother, who drove Fields to follow her passions. The restaurant and bakery features ever-evolving menu items made with fresh, local ingredients.

Nominated for: Outstanding Pastry Chef

Quince, San Francisco, CA

Quince interior

An elegant seating area in Quince.

The three Michelin-starred restaurant showcases Californian ingredients in modern Italian and French dishes under Chef/owner Michael Tusk. The restaurant sources ingredients from its Fresh Run Farm, which influence its seasonally-changing menu.

Nominated for: Outstanding Restaurant

Ignacio Mattos, Estela, Manhattan, NY

Chef Ignacio Mattos

Chef Ignacio Mattos. Photo: Brent Herrig

The intimate space in lower Manhattan serves innovative Mediterranean-inspired cuisine from Chef Ignacio Mattos. Estela’s menu also incorporates the many diverse cultures of New York City.

Nominated for: Best Chef: New York City

Missy Robbins, Lilia, Brooklyn, NY

Chef Missy Robbins

Chef Missy Robbins. Photo: Evan Sung

Missy Robbins’ skills and knowledge of Italian cuisine shine in her neighborhood spot, Lilia. With handmade pastas and woodfired pizzas, Lilia offers a casual dining experience with authentic Italian influence.

Nominated for: Best Chef: New York City

Ann Kim, Young Joni, Minneapolis, MN

Chef Ann Kim

Young Joni's chef and owner, Ann Kim.

Chef/owner Ann Kim brings redefined dining to Minneapolis with Young Joni. Her cooking is a reflection of the cultural conversations she sees in America today and features a menu that uses quality ingredients, wholly inspired by wood-fired cooking. 

Nominated for: Best Chef: Midwest

Tiffani Faison, Tiger Mama, Boston, MA

Chef Tiffani Faison. Photo: Gotham Magazine

Chef Tiffani Faison brings adventurous Southeast Asian–inspired eats to the funky Boston restaurant. Her culinary abilities also earned Faison second place on the first season of Top Chef

Nominated for: Best Chef: Northeast

Kristen Essig and Michael Stoltzfus, Coquette, New Orleans

Coquette team

The Coquette team (Chefs Michael and Kristen on right).

Coquette is owned by Chefs Kristen Essig and Michael Stoltzfus, who serve contemporary Southern cuisine with an emphasis on locally sourced ingredients and globally-inspired dishes. 

Nominated for: Best Chef: South

Dominique Crenn, Atelier Crenn, San Francisco

dom crenn

Atelier's Executive Chef, Dominique Crenn.

Chef Dominique Crenn cooks French-inspired cuisine at her elegant and contemporary restaurant Atelier Crenn, which has earned two Michelin stars. Crenn shows no signs of slowing down with side projects like Bar Crenn and Boutique Crenn already on the way!

Nominated for: Best Chef: West


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