As our NY colleagues just reported, the James Beard Foundation revealed the list of finalists today for the 2013 awards, to be presented on May 6, and San Francisco is even more well represented among the nominees than it has been in recent years. Both local contenders for the Best New Restaurant prize, Rich Table and State Bird Provisions, made the cut from the initial list of semi-finalists, and two local chefs are among the Rising Star finalists as well: Danny Bowien of Mission Chinese Food, and Thomas McNaughton of Flour + Water.
Also, the Bay Area dominates in the category of Best Chef in the West, which covers California, Nevada, and Hawaii. Three local chefs who were previously nominated in 2012— Daniel Patterson, Chris Cosentino, and Christopher Kostow — are all finalists in the category again, alongside Corey Lee of Benu. And the sole SoCal nomination in the category is the team of Jon Shook and Vinny Dotolo of Animal in L.A. An L.A. chef, Matt Molina of Mozza, won in the category last year after a few years of S.F. domination, and we expect an S.F. chef to take the award again this year.
Other re-nominations include Slanted Door for Outstanding Restaurant in the nation, Gary Danko for Outstanding Chef, Melissa Chou of Aziza for Outstanding Pastry Chef, and A16 for Outstanding Wine Program. Bar Agricole has been nominated for the second time in the two-year-old category of Outstanding Bar Program.
And both Quince and Meadowood are nominated in the Outstanding Service category.
As we’ve discussed earlier, most of these nominees can thank Michael Bauer for the honor, as he sits on the committee that nominates chefs and restaurants, as well as Beard Foundation President and local pastry chef Emily Lucchetti.
Good luck to all, and go San Francisco.