Marea, Chang, Levine and Moonen, $100 to Win (2010 James Beard Awards)

When paired with the more intense hurricanes and seemingly unusual number of earthquakes of late, I perceive “Big Daddy” Aaron McCargo, Jr.’s peripheral involvement in a 2010 James Beard Award nomination as an indication of the end of days.  Only in America can a semi-coherent hospital cook catering kitchen chef at a hospital and 700 Club guest win a reality show that spawned a cooking show that spawned this “Back to School” “treat”…

May the powers that be protect the kid who boasts about his "Mini Shepherd's Pies" at lunch the first day of school. I've seen kids get beat-up for bringing mini bananas, let alone "Mini Shepherd's Pies." And shouldn't the potatoes be on top?

…go on to be part of a television episode nominated for a James Beard Award.   The “flavor of bold” indeed.

Yet, along with Bobby Flay, Giada  De Laurentiis, A-Rone Sanchez, Cat Cora, Danny Boome, Tyler Florence and Delilah Winder (apparently, Fairy Godmother Oprah sprinkles your Reading Terminal stall with special Stedman Dust that gives you a lifetime of fame if you make her happy with a pan of mac ‘n’ cheese), Big Daddy was indeed involved in “The Best Thing I Ever Ate:  Obsessions” episode that received a 2010 nomination for television broadcasting.  I seriously hope that this poorly-edited, lazy yet very addictive program won’t win over one of the best food series ever made or poor ol’ crazy out-of-work Auntie Ruthie, but it is entertaining to see James Beard nod in its direction.  It’s kind of like the last dog pulled into the second round judging line-up at Westminster after it tried to lick a judge’s hand or barked and wagged its tail too much during the first round.  It’s a sweet, slightly excitable, adorable crowd favorite, but just doesn’t have a chance against a perfectly coiffed Standard Poodle or a Bichon Frise with the perfect gait.

This year’s nomination list has a lot of those set-ups; categories with two hands-down contenders and one popular favorite.  I like to imagine that a rarefied, underground betting ring exists for the 2010 James Beard Awards, paying out in Gotland truffles, Kopi Luwak and confirmed tables at El Bulli.  So, I am going to lay down a can of Spanish percebes and five pounds of white asparagus and make my picks for this year’s winners.

BOOK AWARDS (For cookbooks published in English in 2009)

BAKING AND DESSERT

X Baking
by James Peterson
(Ten Speed Press)

DamGoodSweet: Desserts to Satisfy Your Sweet Tooth, New Orleans Style
by David Guas, Raquel Pelzel
(The Taunton Press)

Peter Reinhart’s Artisan Breads Every Day
by Peter Reinhart
(Ten Speed Press)

GENERAL COOKING

Ad Hoc at Home
Author: Thomas Keller with Dave Cruz
(Artisan Books)

Salt to Taste: The Keys to Confident, Delicious Cooking
by Marco Canora with Catherine Young
(Rodale)

X The Pleasures of Cooking for One
by Judith Jones
(Alfred A. Knopf)

INTERNATIONAL

Lidia Cooks from the Heart of Italy
by Lidia Bastianich and Tanya Bastianich Manuali
(Alfred A. Knopf)

Mastering the Art of Chinese Cooking
by Eileen Yin-Fei Lo
(Chronicle Books)

X The Country Cooking of Ireland
by Colman Andrews
(Chronicle Books).

SINGLE SUBJECT

X Pasta Sfoglia
by Ron and Colleen Suhanosky with Susan Simon
(John Wiley & Sons, Inc.)

Weber’s Way to Grill
by Jamie Purviance
(Oxmoor House)

Well-Preserved: Recipes and Techniques for Putting Up Small Batches of Seasonal Foods
by Eugenia Bone
(Clarkson Potter)

WRITING AND LITERATURE

X Save the Deli
by David Sax
(Houghton Mifflin Harcourt)

The Seasons on Henry’s Farm: A Year of Food and Life on a Sustainable Farm
by Terra Brockman
(Agate Surrey)

Waste: Uncovering the Global Food Scandal
by Tristram Stuart
(W.W. Norton & Company)

Broadcast Media Awards

For television, webcast, and radio programs aired in 2009.
Winners will be announced on May 2, 2010

AUDIO WEBCAST OR RADIO SHOW

X Eight Forty-Eight
Hosts: Alison Cuddy and Richard Steele
Area: Chicago, Online
Producer: Aurora Aguilar

The Kojo Nnamdi Show
Host: Kojo Nnamdi
Area: Washington, D.C., Online
Producers: Tara Boyle, Michael Martinez, Ingalisa Schrobsdorff, Brendan Sweeney, and Diane Vogel

The Splendid Table
Host: Lynne Rossetto Kasper
Area: National, Online
Producers: Jennifer Russell and Sally Swift

TELEVISION SHOW, IN STUDIO OR FIXED LOCATION

X Barefoot Contessa
Host: Ina Garten
Network: Food Network
Producers: Olivia Ball, Carl Green, Rachel Purnell, Sophie Seiden, and Pacific Productions

French Food at Home with Laura Calder
Host: Laura Calder
Network: Food Network Canada
Producer: Johanna Eliot

Iron Chef America
Host: Alton Brown
Network: Food Network
Producers: John Bravakis, Eytan Keller, Stephen Kroopnick, and Stu Schreiberg

TELEVISION SHOW, ON LOCATION

The Best Thing I Ever Ate: Obsessions
Network: Food Network
Producers: David Hoffman, Lauren Lexton, Tom Rogan, and Eddie Saenz

X Chefs A’ Field: King of Alaska
Host: Rick Moonen
Network: PBS
Producers: Heidi Hanson and Chris Warner

Gourmet’s Adventures with Ruth: The Bertinet Kitchen, Bath
Host: Ruth Reichl
Network: PBS
Producers: Christopher Collins, Laurie Donnelly, Ruth Reichl, and Lydia Tenaglia

TV FOOD PERSONALITY

Andrew Zimmern
Show: Bizarre Foods with Andrew Zimmern
Network: The Travel Channel

X Alton Brown
Show: Good Eats
Network: Food Network

Rick Bayless
Show: Mexico One Plate at a Time
Network: PBS

TELEVISION SPECIAL

X A Moveable Feast with America’s Favorite Chefs
Hosts: José Andrés, Lidia Bastianich, Rick Bayless, Chris Kimball, Ruth Reichl, and Ming Tsai
Network: PBS
Producers: Anne Adams, Laurie Donnelly, and Deborah J. Hurley

Emeril Green: Emeril’s Culinary Adventure: Napa
Host: Emeril Lagasse
Network: Planet Green
Producers: Dominique Andrews, Jim Brennan, Elina Brown, Karen Katz, Charissa Melnick, Marie Ostrosky, Amy Smolens, and Nancy Swenton

Food Trip with Todd English
Host: Todd English
Network: PBS
Producers: Matt Cohen, Joel Coblenz, Todd English, and Gina Gargano

DESIGN AND GRAPHICS AWARDS

OUTSTANDING RESTAURANT DESIGN (Best restaurant design or renovation in North America since January 1, 2007)

Design Firm: Evan Douglis Studio
Designer: Evan Douglis and David Mans
Project: Choice Kitchens & Bakery, Brooklyn, NY

Design Firm: Project M
Designer: John Bielenberg
Project: PieLab, Greensboro, AL

X Design Firm: Andre Kikoski Architect
Designer: Andre Kikoski
Project: The Wright, NYC

JOURNALISM AWARDS (Articles published in English in 2009)

CRAIG CLAIBORNE DISTINGUISHED RESTAURANT REVIEWS

Jonathan Gold
LA Weekly
“Sauced,” “Hot Birria, Cold Cerveza,”
“Hare Today”

X Patric Kuh
Los Angeles
“Border Crossing,” “Peru Calling,”
“The Classic”

Jason Sheehan
Westword
“White on White,” “Wonderland,” “Mourning”

FOOD BLOG

Grub Street New York
Aileen Gallagher, Daniel Maurer, Alexandra Vallis
Newyork.grubstreet.com

X Serious Eats
Ed Levine
Seriouseats.com

Hunter Angler Gardener Cook
Hank Shaw
Honest-Food.net

FOOD-RELATED COLUMNS

X Colman Andrews
Gourmet
Column: Good Living Restaurants
“Veni Vidi Vetri,” “It’s Up to You, New York, New York,” “Smoke and Miracles”

Dara Moskowitz Grumdahl
Minnesota Monthly
“The Doughnut Gatherer,” “Capital Grills,” “Pizza Perfect”

Rachel Wharton
Edible Brooklyn
Column: Back of the House
“Egg,” “Roberta’s,” “Franny’s and Bklyn Larder”

MAGAZINE FEATURE WRITING ABOUT RESTAURANTS AND/OR CHEFS

Alan Richman
GQ
“American Pie”

X Anya von Bremzen
Saveur
“Soul of a City”

Francis Lam
Gourmet
“The Last Chinese BBQ”

MAGAZINE FEATURE WRITING WITH RECIPES

Dana Bowen
Saveur
“The Wonders of Ham”

X Ryan Dagostino
Esquire
“How Men Eat”

Matt Goulding
Men’s Health
“The Beauty of the Beast”

MAGAZINE FEATURE WRITING WITHOUT RECIPES

X Alan Richman
GQ
“Hillbilly Truffle”

Barry Estabrook
Gourmet
“The Price of Tomatoes”

Raffi Khatchadourian
The New Yorker
“The Taste Makers”

M.F.K. FISHER DISTINGUISHED WRITING AWARD

X John T. Edge
The Oxford American
“In Through the Back Door”

Alan Richman
GQ
“Le Petit Gourmet”

Francine Prose
Saveur
“Faith and Bacon”

NEWSPAPER FOOD SECTION

X The Boston Globe
Sheryl Julian

San Francisco Chronicle
Jon Bonné and Miriam Morgan

The Washington Post
Joe Yonan

WEBSITE FOCUSING ON FOOD, BEVERAGE, RESTAURANTS, OR NUTRITION

X Chow.com
Jane Goldman

Epicurious.com
Tanya W. Steel

Saveur.com
James Oseland

RESTAURANT AND CHEF AWARDS

BEST NEW RESTAURANT (A restaurant opened in 2009 that already displays excellence in food, beverage, and service and is likely to have a significant impact on the industry in years to come.)

Bibou
Philadelphia
Chefs/Owners: Pierre and Charlotte Calmels

Flour + Water
San Francisco
Chef/Partner: Thomas McNaughton
Partners: David White and David Steele

Frances
San Francisco
Chef/Owner: Melissa Perello

Locanda Verde
NYC
Chef/Owner: Andrew Carmellini
Partners: Ken Friedman and Josh Pickard

X Marea
NYC
Chef/Partner: Michael White
Partner: Chris Cannon

RN74
San Francisco
Chef: Jason Berthold
Owners: Michael Mina, Millennium Partners, and Rajat Parr

OUTSTANDING CHEF AWARD (A working chef in America whose career has set national industry standards and who has served as an inspiration to other food professionals. Candidates must have been working as chefs for at least the past 5 years.)

José Andrés
Minibar
Washington, D.C.

X Tom Colicchio
Craft
NYC

Gary Danko
Restaurant Gary Danko
San Francisco

Suzanne Goin
Lucques
Los Angeles

Charles Phan
The Slanted Door
San Francisco

OUTSTANDING PASTRY CHEF AWARD (A chef or baker who prepares desserts, pastries, or breads and who serves as a national standard-bearer for excellence. Candidates must have been pastry chefs or bakers for at least the past 5 years.)

Amanda Cook
CityZen at
Mandarin Oriental
Washington, D.C.

Michelle Gayer
Salty Tart Bakery
Minneapolis

Kamel Guechida
Joël Robuchon at MGM Grand Hotel & Casino
Las Vegas

Nicole Plue
Redd
Yountville, CA

X Mindy Segal
Mindy’s HotChocolate
Chicago

OUTSTANDING RESTAURANT AWARD (A restaurant in the United States that serves as a national standard-bearer for consistent quality and excellence in food, atmosphere, and service. Candidates must have been in operation for at least 10 or more consecutive years.)

Babbo
NYC
Chef/Owner: Mario Batali
Owner: Joseph Bastianich

Boulevard
San Francisco
Chef/Owner: Nancy Oakes
Owner: Pat Kuleto

Daniel
NYC
Chef/Owner: Daniel Boulud
Owner: Joel Smilow

Highlands Bar & Grill
Birmingham, AL
Chef/Owner: Frank Stitt
Owner: Pardis Stitt

X Spiaggia
Chicago
Chef/Partner: Tony Mantuano

OUTSTANDING RESTAURATEUR AWARD (A working restaurateur who sets high national standards in restaurant operations and entrepreneurship. Candidates must have been in the restaurant business for at least 10 years. Candidates must not have been nominated for a James Beard Foundation chef award in the past 10 years.)

X Tom Douglas
Dahlia Bakery, Dahlia Lounge, Etta’s, Lola, Palace Kitchen, Serious Pie
Seattle

Pat Kuleto
Boulevard, Epic, Farallon, Jardinière, Martini House, Nick’s Cove & Cottages, and Waterbar
San Francisco

Keith McNally
Balthazar, Lucky Strike, Minetta Tavern, Morandi, Pastis, Pravda, and Schiller’s Liquor Bar
NYC

Richard Melman
Lettuce Entertain You Enterprises
Chicago

Stephen Starr
Starr Restaurant Organization
Philadelphia

BEST CHEFS IN AMERICA (Chefs who have set new or consistent standards of excellence in their respective regions. Each candidate may be employed by any kind of dining establishment and must have been a working chef for at least the past 5 years. The 3 most recent years must have been spent in the region where the chef is presently working.)

Best Chef: Great Lakes (IL, IN, MI, OH)

Michael Carlson
Schwa
Chicago

Koren Grieveson
Avec
Chicago

Arun Sampanthavivat
Arun’s
Chicago

X Bruce Sherman
North Pond
Chicago

Alex Young
Zingerman’s Roadhouse
Ann Arbor, MI

Best Chef: Mid-Atlantic (D.C., DE, MD, NJ, PA, VA)

Cathal Armstrong
Restaurant Eve
Alexandria, VA

X Jeff Michaud
Osteria
Philadelphia

Peter Pastan
Obelisk
Washington, D.C.

Michael Solomonov
Zahav
Philadelphia

Bryan Voltaggio
Volt
Frederick, MD

Best Chef: Midwest (IA, KS, MN, MO, NE, ND, SD, WI)

Isaac Becker
112 Eatery
Minneapolis

Gerard Craft
Niche
St. Louis

Colby Garrelts
Bluestem
Kansas City, MO

Alexander Roberts
Restaurant Alma
Minneapolis

X Lenny Russo
Heartland
St. Paul, MN

Best Chef: New York City (Five Boroughs)

Michael Anthony
Gramercy Tavern

Wylie Dufresne
WD-50

Gabrielle Hamilton
Prune

Daniel Humm
Eleven Madison Park

X Michael White
Marea

Best Chef: Northeast (CT, MA, ME, NH, NY STATE, RI, VT)

Clark Frasier and Mark Gaier
Arrows
Ogunquit, ME

Peter X. Kelly
Xaviar’s at Piermont
Piermont, NY

X Michael Leviton
Lumière
West Newton, MA

Tony Maws
Craigie on Main
Cambridge, MA

Marc Orfaly
Pigalle
Boston

Best Chef: Northwest (AK, ID, MT, OR, WA, WY)

Naomi Pomeroy
Beast
Portland, OR

X Andy Ricker
Pok Pok
Portland, OR

Ethan Stowell
Union
Seattle

Cathy Whims
Nostrana
Portland, OR

Jason Wilson
Crush
Seattle

Best Chef: Pacific (CA, HI)

Michael Cimarusti
Providence
Los Angeles

Jeremy Fox
Ubuntu
Napa, CA

David Kinch
Manresa
Los Gatos, CA

X Matt Molina
Osteria Mozza
Los Angeles

Michael Tusk
Quince
San Francisco

Best Chef: South (AL, AR, FL, LA, MS)

Zach Bell
Café Boulud at the Brazilian Court
Palm Beach, FL

Scott Boswell
Stella!
New Orleans

John Harris
Lilette
New Orleans

Christopher Hastings
Hot and Hot Fish Club
Birmingham, AL

X Michael Schwartz
Michael’s Genuine Food & Drink
Miami

Best Chef: Southeast (GA, KY, NC, SC, TN, WV)

X Hugh Acheson
Five and Ten
Athens, GA

Sean Brock
McCrady’s
Charleston, SC

Linton Hopkins
Restaurant Eugene
Atlanta

Andrea Reusing
Lantern
Chapel Hill, NC

Bill Smith
Crook’s Corner
Chapel Hill, NC

Best Chef: Southwest (AZ, CO, NM, NV, OK, TX, UT)

Bryan Caswell
Reef
Houston

Saipin Chutima
Lotus of Siam
Las Vegas

Ryan Hardy
Montagna at the Little Nell
Aspen, CO

Claude Le Tohic
Joël Robuchon at MGM Grand Hotel & Casino
Las Vegas

X Rick Moonen
RM Seafood at Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino
Las Vegas

This year’s awards take place May 2-3, 2010.  Play ’em as they lay!

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2 Comments»

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