Houston's 10 James Beard Award semifinalists
Several Houston chefs and restaurants got some major nods from the prestigious James Beard Foundation, which released its semifinalist list Wednesday.
Why it matters: The James Beard awards are considered the Oscars of the food world. Being on the list equates to having made exceptional culinary achievements.
The big picture: The recognition of our local chefs underscores that Houston is a food destination.
The intrigue: Chris Williams, the chef and owner of Lucille's, is nominated for Outstanding Restaurateur for the second year in a row.
- Christine Ha and Tony Nguyen of Xin Chào are nominated for Outstanding Chef, after being nominated for Best Chef in Texas last year.
Other local semifinalists in national categories:
- Victoria Elizondo of Cochinita & Co. for Emerging Chef
- Tatemó for Best New Restaurant
- Theodore Rex for Outstanding Hospitality
- Nancy's Hustle for Outstanding Wine and Beverage Program
Plus: Several locals made the list for the best chefs in Texas:
- Gatlin's BBQ chef Greg Gatlin
- Street to Kitchen chef Benchawan Jabthong Painter
- Nam Giao chef Ai Le
- Kiran's chef Kiran Verma
Flashback: Last year, the only Houston establishment to win a James Beard Award was cocktail bar Julep for Outstanding Bar Program.
What's next: Finalists will be announced in March, and the winners will be revealed in a ceremony in Chicago on June 5.
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