Jun 10, 2024 - Food and Drink

Columbus chefs snubbed by James Beard awards, again

Illustration of a chef's toque deflating into a sad balloon.

Illustration: Maura Losch/Axios

This is where we'd put a story about our local James Beard Award finalist … if we had one.

State of play: As our Axios Chicago colleagues prepare to cover the Oscars of the culinary world today on Instagram Live, we're once again sitting on the sidelines. What gives?

Not-so-fun fact: No Columbus chef has ever won a James Beard Award throughout the contest's 33-year history.

The intrigue: Local influencer Alexis Nikole Nelson, known as "The Black Forager," won an award in 2022 for her food-focused social media content.

Yes, but: What will it take for a chef to bring home the crown to Flavortown?

  • Have you heard about the food scene in Clawson, Michigan? We haven't either, but that city of 11,000 has a Best Chef finalist this year.

🤷 The only explanation: They must be unfairly punishing us all because some of you think pizza should be cracker-thin.


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