Four Asheville-area chefs are James Beard Award Semifinalists

Four Asheville-area chefs are James Beard Award Semifinalists

Award description: A restaurant opened in the calendar year before the award will be given that already displays excellence in food, beverage, and service, and that is likely to make a significant impact in years to come. A Michelin-starred chef, Lents has been a James Beard Award finalist in the past and came back to his native MI after working in Chicago.

Cure, the Freret Street cocktail purveyor, was nominated for a third time for best bar program. Corktown's Lady of the House got a nod in the Best New Restaurant category. Working with him are sous chef Bryan Russo, center, and Derek Graue, at the hearth. Eligible restaurants must have been in operation 10 or more consecutive years.

Saffron NOLA, the popular New Orleans Indian restaurant, has been named a semifinalist for a James Beard award for Best New Restaurant in America, one of a long list of local restaurants and chefs in the list of nominees announced Thursday. Joe Kindred of Kindred in Davidson is on the list for Best Chef: Southeast. L'Etoile's wine program was a semi-finalist in 2013. Last year, his chef at Herbsaint, Rebecca Wilcomb, won the award for Best Chef: South.

Sibling duo Evrim and Evin Dogu, co-owners of Sub Rosa Bakery, are both named as semifinalists for Outstanding Baker.

Lena Sareini, pastry chef at Detroit's Selden Standard, at 3921 Second, is listed as a semifinalist for "Rising Star Chef of the Year".

Engel left Shaya Restaurant a few months later as part of a shakeup at the Uptown restaurant, which is part of BRG Hospitality, formerly the Besh Restaurant Group. All JBF Award winners receive a certificate and a medallion engraved with the James Beard Foundation Awards insignia. The Foundation will announce the final nominees March 14 in Philadelphia.

Every year, the foundation honors locally owned restaurants with its America's Classics awards. We should pursue it with a ...

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