The James Beard Foundation dropped their extensive semifinalist roundup today, a preview to a narrowed down nominees list coming March 19.
City-wise, New York City is still the best place to go, with 22 total semifinalists (not counting regional chef nominations). Chicago followed close behind, with 17 semifinalists.
As for new restuarants, both Los Angeles and New York City hold claim to three Best New Restaurant semifinalists, while most other cities (Washington, D.C., Chicago, San Francisco, and Philadelphia) had two on the list.
Some noteworthy names? Philadelphia's Vetri is listed twice, for Outstanding Restaurant and Outstanding Service. Andrew Zimmerman made the cut for best chef in the Great Lakes area, and Zimmerman's Sepia is a semifinalist for Oustanding Wine Program.
Seattle's Canlis is on the list three times, for Outstanding Restaurant and Outstanding Wine Program, and chef Jason Franey for the Northwest's best chef.
And of course, no surprises here, but Grant Achatz's Aviary and Next are both on the list, as well as Daniel Humm for Eleven Madison Park. Check out the full semifinalist list via PDF here, and wait to see who's left in the running on March 19.
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