Jan 24, 2024 - Food and Drink

Nashville restaurants honored as James Beard semifinalists

A composite image of three Japanese dishes.

A selection of dishes from Kisser. Photo: courtesy of Kisser

Nashville snagged four nods on the list of semifinalists for this year's James Beard Foundation Awards.

The big picture: Kisser, a buzzy East Nashville eatery specializing in Japanese comfort food, is up for best new restaurant in the country. It is one of 30 establishments vying for the honor.

  • Husband-and-wife duo Leina Horii and Brian Lea opened the restaurant last March.

State of plate: D'Andrews Bakery & Cafe, located on Church Street near the downtown library, is a semifinalist for outstanding bakery.

  • Nashville native David Andrews opened the shop after years of climbing the culinary ladder in New York.

Zoom in: Locust's Trevor Moran and the International Market's Arnold Myint made the shortlist for best chef in the southeast.

  • Moran was a semifinalist last year, and Locust has received national acclaim.
  • Myint has been a mainstay in the Nashville food scene for years. International Market, a beloved family restaurant founded in 1975 by his mother Patti Myint, found renewed success after he and his sister revived the concept in a new location.

Of note: Kimball Brienza and Steve Palmer are up in the outstanding restaurateur category for the Charleston, South Carolina, location of O-Ku Sushi.

What's next: The field will be narrowed down to finalists on April 3. The winners will be revealed at an awards ceremony in Chicago on June 10.


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