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Southern Chefs Have Strong Showing in 2019 James Beard Award Semifinalist Lineup

Published March 2nd, 2019 by Kaido

chef brad kilgore in white alter chef coat

In Southern Kitchen

By Ryan Hughley

The James Beard Foundation just announced the 2019 Restaurant and Chef Award semifinalists, and on the list are quite a few movers and shakers down South.

The James Beard Foundation’s annual awards are not unlike the Grammy’s, Oscars or Tony Awards. In fact, for members of the culinary world, this is as big as it gets. For a long time this list focused heavily on talent from cities like New York, Chicago and Los Angeles. Now however, with a broader appreciation of regional cuisines, more and more fresh faces are getting some shine.

From Best New Restaurant to Outstanding Pastry Chef, the South is proving to others what we already know — we’re gosh darn lucky to be Southerners. Read below to see who made James Beard semifinalist list and maybe try to snag a reservation at one of these restaurants while you still can.

Best Chef: South

Lindsay Autry, The Regional Kitchen & Public House, West Palm Beach, FL

David Bancroft, Acre, Auburn, AL

Vishwesh Bhatt, Snackbar, Oxford, MS

Bill Briand, Fisher’s Upstairs at Orange Beach Marina, Orange Beach, AL

Clay Conley, Buccan, Palm Beach, FL

Alex Eaton, The Manship Wood Fired Kitchen, Jackson, MS

Kristen Essig and Michael Stoltzfus, Coquette, New Orleans

Michael Gulotta, Maypop, New Orleans

Mason Hereford, Turkey and the Wolf, New Orleans

Timothy Hontzas, Johnny’s Restaurant, Homewood, AL

Brad Kilgore, Alter, Miami

Niven Patel, Ghee Indian Kitchen, Miami

Matthew McClure, The Hive, Bentonville, AR

Alex Perry, Vestige, Ocean Springs, MS

Jeannie Pierola, Edison: Food+Drink Lab, Tampa, FL

Slade Rushing, Brennan’s, New Orleans

Melissa Donahue-Talmage,Sweet Melissa’s Café, Sanibel, FL

Isaac Toups, Toups’ Meatery, New Orleans

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