Meet the 2024 James Beard Awards restaurant and chef semifinalists

A composed plate of food at Aspen Colorado restaurany Bosq

We’re only in the first month of the year, but it’s never too early to start celebrating some of the best restaurants and chefs working across the country right now.

The James Beard Foundation just announced the restaurant and chef semifinalists for its coveted annual awards that will take place in Chicago this June. Stay tuned over the next few months as the finalists will be revealed in April, followed by the winners in the summer.

For now, let’s celebrate the semifinalists of the Oscars of the food world below.

Outstanding Restaurateur

A restaurateur who uses their establishment(s) as a vehicle for building community, demonstrates creativity in entrepreneurship and integrity in restaurant operations, and is making efforts to create a sustainable work culture while contributing positively to their broader community.

  • Ashok Bajaj, Knightsbridge Restaurant Group (Rasika, Annabelle, Sababa, and others), Washington, D.C.
  • Itai Ben Eli and Itamar Levy, Sof Hospitality Group (Doris Metropolitan, Hamsa, and Bādolina Bakery & Café), Houston, TX
  • Kimball Brienza and Stephen Palmer, O-Ku Sushi, Charleston, SC
  • Marcos Carbajal, Carnitas Uruapan, Chicago, IL
  • Bryan Chuntan and Pei Wei, Zaab Zaab and Zaab Zaab Talay, New York, NY
  • Ravi DeRossi, Overthrow Hospitality (Cadence, Etérea, Avant Garden, and others), New York, NY
  • Greg Dulan, Dulan’s Soul Food Kitchen, Hotville Chicken, and DulanVILLE, Inglewood, CA
  • Laile Fairbairn, Locally Grown Restaurants (Snow City Cafe, South Restaurant + Coffeehouse, and Spenard Roadhouse), Anchorage, AK
  • Michael Gallina, Tara Gallina, and Aaron Martinez, Take Root Hospitality (Vicia, Winslow’s Table, Bistro La Floraison, and others), St. Louis, MO
  • Armando Hernandez and Nadia Holguin, Cocina Chiwas and Tacos Chiwas, Tempe and Phoenix, AZ
  • Robert LeBlanc, LeBlanc + Smith (Sylvain, The Chloe, The Will & The Way, and others), New Orleans, LA
  • Hamissi Mamba and Nadia Nijimbere, Baobab Fare, Detroit, MI
  • Nikki Ness Berglund and Ryan Nitschke, Luna Fargo, Sol Ave. Kitchen, Nova Eatery and others, Fargo, ND
  • Quynh-Vy and Yenvy Pham, Phở Bắc Súp Shop, Phởcific Standard Time, and The Boat, Seattle, WA
  • Nicolas Poilevey and Oliver Poilevey, Obelix, Le Bouchon, and Taqueria Chingón, Chicago, IL
  • I-Ho Pomeroy, I-Ho’s Korean Grill, Bozeman, MT
  • Cara Stadler and Cecile Stadler, BaoBao Dumpling House, Tao Yuan Restaurant, and ZaoZe Cafe & Market, Portland, ME
  • Chris Viaud, Greenleaf, Ansanm, and Pavilion, Milford, NH
  • Hollis Wells Silverman, Eastern Point Collective (The Duck & The Peach, La Collina, The Wells and others), Washington, D.C.
  • Kelly Whitaker, Id Est Hospitality Group (The Wolf’s Tailor, BRUTØ, Basta, and others), Boulder, CO


Outstanding Chef presented by Hilton

A chef who sets high culinary standards and has served as a positive example for other food professionals while contributing positively to their broader community.

  • Oscar Amador Edo, Anima by EDO, Las Vegas, NV
  • Emma Bengtsson, Aquavit, New York, NY
  • Barclay Dodge, Bosq, Aspen, CO
  • Jeremy Fox, Birdie G’s, Santa Monica, CA
  • Francis Guzmán, Vianda, San Juan, PR
  • Atsushi Hayakawa, Hayakawa, Atlanta, GA
  • Rashida Holmes, Bridgetown Roti, Los Angeles, CA
  • Dionicio Jiménez, Cantina La Martina, Philadelphia, PA
  • David Kirkland and Ernest Servantes, Burnt Bean Co., Seguin, TX
  • Dan Kluger, Loring Place, New York, NY
  • Gregory León, Amilinda, Milwaukee, WI
  • Sarah Minnick, Lovely’s Fifty Fifty, Portland, OR
  • Sylvan Mishima Brackett, Rintaro, San Francisco, CA
  • Dean Neff, Seabird, Wilmington, NC
  • Daniel del Prado, Porzana, Minneapolis, MN
  • Michael Rafidi, Albi, Washington, D.C.
  • John Shields and Karen Urie Shields, Smyth, Chicago, IL
  • Renee Touponce, The Port of Call, Mystic, CT
  • David Uygur, Lucia, Dallas, TX
  • Aaron Verzosa, Archipelago, Seattle, WA


Outstanding Restaurant presented by Acqua Panna® Natural Spring Water

A restaurant that demonstrates consistent excellence in food, atmosphere, hospitality, and operations while contributing positively to its broader community.

The interior of the Seattle restaurant The Walrus and the Carpenter
Seattle’s the Walrus and the Carpenter is a semifinalist for Outstanding Restaurant. Photo credit: The Walrus and the Carpenter
  • 2941, Falls Church, VA
  • Beckon, Denver, CO
  • Bywater, Warren, RI
  • The Compound, Santa Fe, NM
  • Convenience West, Marfa, TX
  • Coracora, West Hartford, CT
  • The DeBruce, Livingston Manor, NY
  • The Duck Inn, Chicago, IL
  • Koi Palace, Daly City, CA
  • Langbaan, Portland, OR
  • The Market Place, Asheville, NC
  • Mixtli, San Antonio, TX
  • Nancy’s Hustle, Houston, TX
  • Pineapple & Pearls, Washington, D.C.
  • The Restaurant at Gideon Ridge Inn, Blowing Rock, NC
  • Selden Standard, Detroit, MI
  • Superiority Burger, New York, NY
  • Vestige, Ocean Springs, MS
  • The Walrus and the Carpenter, Seattle, WA
  • Yoshitomo, Omaha, NE


Emerging Chef presented by S.Pellegrino® Sparkling Mineral Water

A chef who displays exceptional talent, character, and leadership ability, and who is likely to make a significant impact in years to come while contributing positively to their broader community.

The chef Fariyal Abdullahi at NYC restaurant Hav & Mar
Hav & Mar executive chef Fariyal Abdullahi is a semifinalist for emerging chef. Photo credit: Hav & Mar
  • Fariyal Abdullahi, Hav & Mar, New York, NY
  • Ope Amosu, ChòpnBlọk, Houston, TX
  • Janet Becerra, Pancita, Seattle, WA
  • Nikko Cagalanan, Kultura, Charleston, SC
  • Roberto Centeno, Espiritu, Mesa, AZ
  • Ki Chung, Bar Maze, Honolulu, HI
  • Rocky Coronado, Nepantla, Detroit, MI
  • Danielle Duran-Zecca and Alessandro Zecca, Amiga Amore, Los Angeles, CA
  • Ryan Fernandez, Southern Junction, Buffalo, NY
  • Yun Fuentes, Bolo, Philadelphia, PA
  • Sky Haneul Kim, Gift Horse, Providence, RI
  • Emily Lim, Dabao Singapore, San Francisco, CA
  • Zubair Mohajir, The Coach House by Wazwan, Chicago, IL
  • Masako Morishita, Perry’s, Washington, D.C.
  • Joe Robbins, Bissell Brothers Three Rivers Kitchen, Milo, ME
  • Bryce Stevenson, Miijim, La Pointe, WI
  • Kenneth Wan, MAKfam, Denver, CO
  • Lawrence Weeks, North of Bourbon, Louisville, KY
  • Chanah Willis, Last Call Baking, Birmingham, AL
  • Jeff Workman, The Campground, Kansas City, MO


Best New Restaurant

A restaurant opened between October 1, 2022 through September 30, 2023 that already demonstrates excellence in cuisine, seems likely to make a significant impact in years to come, and demonstrates consistent excellence in food, atmosphere, hospitality, and operations, while contributing positively to its broader community. Establishments that have opened after September 30, 2023 can be considered for the 2025 Awards.*

Several plates of food at Houston restaurant Jūn
Houston spot Jūn is a semifinalist for Best New Restaurant. Photo credit: Jūn
  • Ajja, Raleigh, NC
  • Alkemē, Santa Fe, NM
  • The Alna Store, Alna, ME
  • Alpino, Detroit, MI
  • Atelier, Chicago, IL
  • Ava Bakery, Phoenix, AZ
  • Bar Bacetto, Waitsburg, WA
  • Barbs-B-Q, Lockhart, TX
  • Barra Santos, Los Angeles, CA
  • Chez Noir, Carmel-by-the-Sea, CA
  • Comfort Kitchen, Dorchester, MA
  • Dakar NOLA, New Orleans, LA
  • Foul Witch, New York, NY
  • Foxface Natural, New York, NY
  • Hayward, McMinnville, OR
  • Jūn, Houston, TX
  • Kaya, Orlando, FL
  • Kiln, San Francisco, CA
  • Kisser, Nashville, TN
  • Lita, Aberdeen Township, NJ
  • Mainlander, St. Louis, MO
  • My Loup, Philadelphia, PA
  • Oro by Nixta, Minneapolis, MN
  • Ramen Del Barrio, Austin, TX
  • Sado, St. Louis, MO
  • Sắp Sửa, Denver, CO
  • Scoundrel, Greenville, SC
  • Shan, Bozeman, MT
  • Tatiana by Kwame Onwuachi, New York, NY
  • Tuxpan Taqueria, Central Falls, RI


Outstanding Bakery

A baker of breads, pastries, or desserts that demonstrates consistent excellence in food, atmosphere, hospitality, and operations while contributing positively to its broader community.

  • Bobby Boy Bakeshop, Winston-Salem, NC
  • Breadshop, Honolulu, HI
  • The Burque Bakehouse, Albuquerque, NM
  • La Casita Bakeshop, Richardson, TX
  • D’Andrews Bakery & Cafe, Nashville, TN
  • Gusto Bread, Long Beach, CA
  • Isgro Pastries, Philadelphia, PA
  • JinJu Patisserie, Portland, OR
  • Koffeteria, Houston, TX
  • Loba Pastry+Coffee, Chicago, IL
  • Make My Cake, New York, NY
  • Mel the Bakery, Hudson, NY
  • Nichole’s Fine Pastry & Café, Fargo, ND
  • La Pâtisserie Chouquette, Saint Louis, MO
  • Pluma by Bluebird Bakery, Washington, D.C.
  • Shatila Bakery, Dearborn, MI
  • Table X Bread, Salt Lake City, UT
  • Vía Láctea, San Juan, PR
  • Zak the Baker, Miami, FL
  • ZU Bakery, Portland, ME


Outstanding Pastry Chef or Baker

A pastry chef or baker who makes desserts, pastries, or breads. Candidate demonstrates exceptional skills and can be affiliated with any food business and does not need a brick-and-mortar presence. Candidate contributes positively to their broader community.

  • Susan Bae, Moon Rabbit, Washington, D.C.
  • Jesus Brazon and Manuel Brazon, Caracas Bakery, Doral and Miami, FL
  • Mariela Camacho, Comadre Panadería, Austin, TX
  • Ben Campbell, Ben’s Bread Co., Seattle, WA
  • Tania Cienfuegos Harris, Topsoil Kitchen & Market, Travelers Rest, SC
  • Kristina Costa, Loquat, San Francisco, CA
  • Syovata Edari, CocoVaa Chocolatier, Madison, WI
  • Atsuko Fujimoto, Norimoto Bakery, Portland, ME
  • Remy Funfrock, La Pâtisserie, Charleston, SC
  • Marc Heu, Marc Heu Pâtisserie Paris, St. Paul, MN
  • Crystal Kass, Valentine, Phoenix, AZ
  • Eunji Lee, Lysée, New York, NY
  • Kimmie Mcintosh and Josh Mcintosh, MILKFISH Bakeshop, Las Vegas, NV
  • Camari Mick, The Musket Room, New York, NY
  • Carolyn Nugent and Alen Ramos, Poulette Bakeshop, Parker, CO
  • Anna Posey, Elske, Chicago, IL
  • Phillip Ashley Rix, Phillip Ashley Chocolates, Memphis, TN
  • Nicole Rucker, Fat + Flour, Los Angeles, CA
  • Stephanie Velasquez, Ema HTX, Houston, TX
  • Kristina Zontini, Super Secret Ice Cream, Bethlehem, NH


Outstanding Hospitality presented by American Airlines

A restaurant, bar, or other food and drinking establishment that fosters a sense of hospitality among its customers and staff that serves as a beacon for the community and demonstrates consistent excellence in food, atmosphere, hospitality, and operations, while contributing positively to its broader community.

The New York chef Melba Wilson at her NYC restaurant Melba's
Melba Wilson, the chef and owner of NYC’s Melba’s, which is a semifinalist for Outstanding Hospitality. Photo credit: Battman
  • AlTayeb Restaurant, Dearborn, MI
  • Andreoli Italian Grocer, Scottsdale, AZ
  • Arnaud’s, New Orleans, LA
  • La Baleine Café, Homer, AK
  • Bludorn, Houston, TX
  • Charleston, Baltimore, MD
  • Cooks & Soldiers, Atlanta, GA
  • Crawford and Son, Raleigh, NC
  • Fiola, Washington, D.C.
  • Gemma, Dallas, TX
  • Giusto, Newport, RI
  • Han Oak, Portland, OR
  • Lazy Bear, San Francisco, CA
  • Lula Cafe, Chicago, IL
  • Luv2eat Thai Bistro, Los Angeles, CA
  • Melba’s, New York, NY
  • Pasture and Plenty, Madison, WI
  • Snake River Grill, Jackson, WY
  • Valter’s Osteria, Salt Lake City, UT
  • Woodford Food & Beverage, Portland, ME


Outstanding Wine and Other Beverages Program

A restaurant that demonstrates exceptional care and skill in the pairing of wine and other beverages with food while contributing positively to its broader community. This includes the selection, preparation, and serving of wine, cocktails, spirits, coffee, tea, beer, or any other beverage with outstanding hospitality and service that helps inform and enhance a customer’s appreciation of the beverage(s). Ethical sourcing and positive contributions to the broader community will also be considered.

  •, Philadelphia, PA
  • Affäre, Kansas City, MO
  • Bufalina, Austin, TX
  • COTE, New York, NY
  • Eight Row, Seattle, WA
  • Folk, Detroit, MI
  • haley.henry wine bar, Boston, MA
  • The Hope Farm, Fairhope, AL
  • Lula Drake Wine Parlour, Columbia, SC
  • Macchialina, Miami Beach, FL
  • Middle Brow, Chicago, IL
  • The Morris, San Francisco, CA
  • OK Omens, Portland, OR
  • Rebel Rebel, Somerville, MA
  • Spencer, Ann Arbor, MI
  • Strong Water Anaheim, Anaheim, CA
  • Sunday Vinyl, Denver, CO
  • Taconeta, El Paso, TX
  • Tail Up Goat, Washington, D.C.
  • Waxlight Bar à Vin, Buffalo, NY


Outstanding Bar

A wine bar, beer bar, cocktail bar, coffee bar, or any other business whose primary offering is beverage and that demonstrates consistent excellence in curating a selection or in the preparation of drinks, along with outstanding atmosphere, hospitality, and operations, and contributing positively to its broader community.

  • All Night Skate, Brooklyn, NY
  • Amalga Distillery, Juneau, AK
  • Barr Hill Cocktail Bar, Montpelier, VT
  • Bittersweet, Raleigh, NC
  • Bow & Arrow Brewing Co., Albuquerque, NM
  • Clavel Mezcaleria, Baltimore, MD
  • Courtland Club, Providence, RI
  • Double Chicken Please, New York, NY
  • Drastic Measures, Shawnee, KS
  • Edmund’s Oast, Charleston, SC
  • Esters Wine Shop & Bar, Santa Monica, CA
  • Horn & Cantle Saloon, Big Sky, MT
  • Jewel of the South, New Orleans, LA
  • Little Rituals, Phoenix, AZ
  • Meteor, Minneapolis, MN
  • Pacific Cocktail Haven, San Francisco, CA
  • Las Ramblas, Brownsville, TX
  • Scratch Brewing Company, Ava, IL
  • Service Bar, Washington, DC
  • Webb’s City Cellar, St. Petersburg, FL

Best Chefs presented by Capital One (by region)

Chefs who set high standards in their culinary skills and leadership abilities and who are making efforts to help create a sustainable work culture in their respective regions, while contributing positively to their broader community.


Best Chef: California

  • Diego Argoti, Poltergeist, Los Angeles, CA
  • C-Y Chia and Shane Stanbridge, Lion Dance Cafe, Oakland, CA
  • Geoff Davis, Burdell, Oakland, CA
  • Azalina Eusope, Azalina’s, San Francisco, CA
  • Alex Garcia and Elvia Huerta, Evil Cooks, Los Angeles, CA
  • Rogelio Garcia, Auro, Calistoga, CA
  • Srijith “Sri” Gopinathan, Copra, San Francisco, CA
  • Dima Habibeh, Ammatoli, Long Beach, CA
  • Jeong-In Hwang, San Ho Won, San Francisco, CA
  • Jihee Kim, Perilla, Los Angeles, CA
  • Kristina Liedags Compton, Hilda and Jesse, San Francisco, CA
  • Alfonso “Poncho” Martinez, Poncho’s Tlayudas, Los Angeles, CA
  • Lord Maynard Llera, Kuya Lord, Los Angeles, CA
  • Tara Monsod, Animae, San Diego, CA
  • Buu “Billy” Ngo, Kru, Sacramento, CA
  • Laura Ozyilmaz and Sayat Ozyilmaz, Dalida, San Francisco, CA
  • Michael Procaccini and Stefano Procaccini, La Parolaccia, Long Beach, CA
  • Alisa Reynolds, My 2 Cents, Los Angeles, CA
  • Finn Stern, Daytrip, Oakland, CA
  • Christian Yang, Yang’s Kitchen, Alhambra, CA


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

  • Avishar Barua, Joya’s, Worthington, OH
  • Erik Bentz and Elaine Uykimpang Bentz, Cafe Mochiko, Cincinnati, OH
  • Vinnie Cimino, Cordelia, Cleveland, OH
  • Diana Dávila Boldin, Mi Tocaya Antojería, Chicago, IL
  • Salvador Fernandez, Bridges Craft Pizza & Wine Bar, Greencastle, IN
  • Joe Fontelera, Boonie’s Filipino Restaurant, Chicago, IL
  • Joe Frillman, Daisies, Chicago, IL
  • Jeffery Harris, Nolia Kitchen, Cincinnati, OH
  • Doug Hewitt, Freya, Detroit, MI
  • Ji Hye Kim, Miss Kim, Ann Arbor, MI
  • Dan Klenotic, Bellflower, Ypsilanti, MI
  • BJ Lieberman, Chapman’s Eat Market, Columbus, OH
  • James Martin, Bocadillo Market, Chicago, IL
  • Thomas Melvin, Vida, Indianapolis, IN
  • Jose Salazar, Mita’s, Cincinnati, OH
  • Sujan Sarkar, Indienne, Chicago, IL
  • Hajime Sato, Sozai, Clawson, MI
  • Jenner Tomaska, Esme, Chicago, IL
  • John Yelinek, Ladder 4 Wine Bar, Detroit, MI
  • Donald Young, Duck Sel, Chicago, IL


Best Chef: Mid-Atlantic (DC, DE, MD, NJ, PA, VA)

  • Carlos Aparicio, El Chingon, Philadelphia, PA
  • Angel Barreto, Anju, Washington, D.C.
  • Najmieh Batmanglij and Christopher Morgan, Joon, Vienna, VA
  • Amy Brandwein, Centrolina, Washington, D.C.
  • Tony Conte, Inferno Pizzeria Napoletana, Darnestown, MD
  • Dane DeMarco, Gass & Main, Haddonfield, NJ
  • Nur-E Gulshan Rahman, Korai Kitchen, Jersey City, NJ
  • Keem Hughley, Bronze, Washington, D.C.
  • Jesse Ito, Royal Sushi & Izakaya, Philadelphia, PA
  • Matt Kern, One Coastal, Fenwick Island, DE
  • Kate Lasky and Tomasz Skowronski, Apteka, Pittsburgh, PA
  • Esther Lee, Obelisk, Washington, D.C.
  • Travis Milton, Hickory at Nicewonder Farm and Vineyards, Bristol, VA
  • Harley Peet, Bas Rouge, Easton, MD
  • Randy Rucker, River Twice, Philadelphia, PA
  • Yuan Tang, Rooster & Owl, Washington, D.C.
  • Omar Tate, Honeysuckle Provisions, Philadelphia, PA
  • Kevin Tien, Moon Rabbit, Washington, D.C.
  • Bootsaba Tongdee, Pusadee’s Garden, Pittsburgh, PA
  • David Zamudio, Alma Cocina Latina, Baltimore, MD


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

  • Sanaa Abourezk, Sanaa’s Gourmet Mediterranean, Sioux Falls, SD
  • Ann Ahmed, Khâluna, Minneapolis, MN
  • Ross Bachhuber and Samuel Ek, Odd Duck, Milwaukee, WI
  • Andrea Baumgardner, BernBaum’s, Fargo, ND
  • Lisa Carlson and Carrie Summer, Chef Shack Bay City, Bay City, WI
  • Rob Connoley, Bulrush, St. Louis, MO
  • Philip Day, Root Food + Wine, Augusta, MO
  • Chris Hoffmann, Clyde’s Fine Diner, Des Moines, IA
  • Kenny Howard and Heath Stocks, Anima Cucina, Bismarck, ND
  • Dan Jacobs and Dan Van Rite, EsterEv, Milwaukee, WI
  • Kyle Knall, Birch, Milwaukee, WI
  • Johnny Leach, The Town Company, Kansas City, MO
  • Katie Liu-Sung, Chewology, Kansas City, MO
  • Romain Monnoyeur, Westport Cafe, Kansas City, MO
  • Loryn Nalic, Balkan Treat Box, Webster Groves, MO
  • Christina Nguyen, Hai Hai, Minneapolis, MN
  • Tim Nicholson, The Boiler Room, Omaha, NE
  • Rozz Petrozz, Saltwell Farm Kitchen, Overbrook, KS
  • Sean Pharr, Mint Mark, Madison, WI
  • Karyn Tomlinson, Myriel, St. Paul, MN

Best Chef: Mountain (CO, ID, MT, UT, WY)

  • Joshua Adams, Campione, Livingston, MT
  • Theo Adley, Marigold, Lyons, CO
  • Salvador Alamilla, Amano, Caldwell, ID
  • Dan Ansotegui, Ansots, Boise, ID
  • Ben Barlow and Heather Logan, Stanley Supper Club, Stanley, ID
  • David Chon, Bar Nohm, Salt Lake City, UT
  • Diego Coconati, Lucina Eatery & Bar, Denver, CO
  • Brandon Cunningham, Social Haus, Greenough, MT
  • Aminata “Ami” Dia and Rougui Dia, Le French, Denver, CO
  • Charley Graham, Little Star Diner, Bozeman, MT
  • Walker Hunter, Brasserie Porte Rouge, Missoula, MT
  • Lee Johnson, MontAsia, Fishtail, MT
  • Dave Jones, Log Haven, Salt Lake City, UT
  • Jason King, King Sushi, Jackson, WY
  • Bo Porytko, Molotov Kitschen + Cocktails, Denver, CO
  • Ali Sabbah, Mazza Cafe, Salt Lake City, UT
  • Nick Steen Gullings, Walkers Grill, Billings, MT
  • Matt Vawter, Rootstalk, Breckenridge, CO
  • Penelope Wong, Yuan Wonton, Denver, CO
  • Nick Zocco, Urban Hill, Salt Lake City, UT


Best Chef: New York State

  • Nasim Alikhani, Sofreh, Brooklyn, NY
  • Mary Attea, Musket Room, New York, NY
  • Ayo Balogun, Dept of Culture, Brooklyn, NY
  • Clare de Boer, Stissing House, Pine Plains, NY
  • Doris Choi, Good Night, Woodstock, NY
  • Calvin Eng, Bonnie’s, Brooklyn, NY
  • Aretah Ettarh, Gramercy Tavern, New York, NY
  • Charles Gabriel, Charles Pan-Fried Chicken, New York, NY
  • Efrén Hernández, Casa Susanna, Leeds, NY
  • Luis Herrera, Ensenada, Brooklyn, NY
  • JJ Johnson, FieldTrip, New York, NY
  • Telly Justice, HAGS, New York, NY
  • Atsushi Kono, Kono, New York, NY
  • Shaina Loew-Banayan, Cafe Mutton, Hudson, NY
  • Christina Mauricio, Harana Market, Accord, NY
  • Charlie Mitchell, Cloverhill, Brooklyn, NY
  • Scarr Pimentel, Scarr’s Pizza, New York, NY
  • Jeremy Salamon, Agi’s Counter, Brooklyn, NY
  • Hillary Sterling, Ci Siamo, New York, NY
  • Ed Szymanski, Lord’s, New York, NY


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

  • Celia Bruns, Artemisia Cafe, Portland, ME
  • Peter Carvelli, Foglia, Bristol, RI
  • Tracy Chang, Pagu, Cambridge, MA
  • Cara Chigazola Tobin, Honey Road, Burlington, VT
  • John daSilva, Chickadee, Boston, MA
  • Conor Dennehy, Tallula, Cambridge, MA
  • Subat Dilmurat, Jahunger, Providence, RI
  • Ian Driscoll, Bar Futo, Portland, ME
  • Patricia Estorino, Gustazo Cuban Kitchen & Bar, Cambridge, MA
  • Lee Frank, Otis Restaurant, Exeter, NH
  • Valerie Goldman, The Honey Paw, Portland, ME
  • Cecelia Lizotte, Suya Joint, Boston, MA
  • Laurence Louie, Rubato, Quincy, MA
  • Maria Meza, Dolores, Providence, RI
  • Rachel Miller, Nightshade Noodle Bar, Lynn, MA
  • David Standridge, The Shipwright’s Daughter, Mystic, CT
  • Jake Stevens, Leeward, Portland, ME
  • Micah Tavelli, Paradiso Hi-Fi, Burlington, VT
  • Andy Teixeira, Newport Vineyards, Middletown, RI
  • Basil Yu, Yagi Noodles, Newport, RI


Best Chef: Northwest and Pacific (AK, HI, OR, WA)


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

  • Pete Amadhanirundr, Puma Yu’s, Athens, GA
  • Arnaldo Castillo, Tio Lucho’s, Atlanta, GA
  • Daryl Cooper and Oscar Johnson, Jimmy Pearls, Charlotte, NC
  • Erika Council, Bomb Biscuits, Atlanta, GA
  • Kitwanda “Kiki” Cyrus and Tyrone Cyrus, Kiki’s Chicken and Waffles, Columbia, SC
  • Jamie Davis, The Hackney, Washington, NC
  • Jacques Larson, The Obstinate Daughter, Sullivan’s Island, SC
  • Rod Lassiter and Parnass Savang, Talat Market, Atlanta, GA
  • Daris Leatherwood, Supper Club on 2nd, Memphis, TN
  • James London, Chubby Fish, Charleston, SC
  • Scott MacGregor, Appalachia Kitchen, Snowshoe, WV
  • Dallas McGarity, The Fat Lamb, Louisville, KY
  • Trevor Moran, Locust, Nashville, TN
  • Arnold Myint, International Market, Nashville, TN
  • Duane Nutter, Southern National, Atlanta, GA
  • Robbie Robinson, City Limits Barbeque, Cayce, SC
  • Jason Sellers, Plant, Asheville, NC
  • Paul Smith, 1010 Bridge, Charleston, WV
  • Kanlaya “Gun” Supachana, Dalaya Thai Cuisine, Sylva, NC
  • Preeti Waas, Cheeni Indian Food Emporium, Raleigh, NC


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

  • Melissa Araujo, Alma Cafe, New Orleans, LA
  • Kelsey Barnard Clark, KBC, Dothan, AL
  • Jennifer Berdin and Mark Berdin, Kadence, Orlando, FL
  • Valerie Chang, Maty’s, Miami, FL
  • Clay Conley, Buccan, Palm Beach, FL
  • Matt Cooper, Conifer, Bentonville, AR
  • Tristen Epps, Ocean Social, Miami, FL
  • Hunter Evans, Elvie’s, Jackson, MS
  • Ruben Guzman, Leña Eh Food Truck, San Juan, PR
  • Hardette Harris, Us Up North, Shreveport, LA
  • Gabriel Hernandez, Verde Mesa, San Juan, PR
  • Amarys Herndon and Jordan Herndon, Palm&Pine, New Orleans, LA
  • Rob McDaniel, Helen, Birmingham, AL
  • Henry Moso, Kabooki Sushi, Orlando, FL
  • Carlos Portela, Orujo, San Juan, PR
  • Arwen Rice, Red or White, Mobile, AL
  • Rafael Rios, Yeyo’s El Alma de Mexico, Bentonville, AR
  • Sophina Uong, Mister Mao, New Orleans, LA
  • Arvinder Vilkhu, Saffron, New Orleans, LA
  • Marlon “Chicken” Williams, Chicken’s Kitchen, Gretna, LA


Best Chef: Southwest (AZ, NM, NV, OK)

  • Rene Andrade, Bacanora, Phoenix, AZ
  • Christopher Bethoney, Campo at Los Poblanos, Albuquerque, NM
  • Annamaria Brezna O’Brien, Dolina Cafe and Bakery, Santa Fe, NM
  • Flavia Briones, Barista Del Barrio, Tucson, AZ
  • Pornsupak “Cat” Bunnag, Glai Baan, Phoenix, AZ
  • Jeff Chanchaleune, Ma Der Lao Kitchen, Oklahoma City, OK
  • Alexandre Figueira, Doctor Kustom, Tulsa, OK
  • DJ Flores, Milpa, Las Vegas, NV
  • Wendy Garcia, Tumerico, Tucson, AZ
  • Josefina Garcilazo, Chope’s, La Mesa, NM
  • Sam Greenhalgh, Forêt, Flagstaff, AZ
  • Jordan Hawley, il seme, Tulsa, OK
  • Brian Howard, Sparrow + Wolf, Las Vegas, NV
  • Steve Kestler, Aroma Latin American Cocina, Henderson, NV
  • Marc Quinones, Level 5, Albuquerque, NM
  • Steve Riley, Mesa Provisions, Albuquerque, NM
  • Eduardo Rodriguez, Zacatlan, Santa Fe, NM
  • Jacque Siegfried, Natv, Broken Arrow, OK
  • Tabb Singleton, Phat Tabb’s BBQ, Idabel, OK
  • Claudio Urciuoli, Source, Gilbert, AZ


Best Chef: Texas

  • Thomas Bille, Belly of the Beast, Spring, TX
  • Tavel Bristol-Joseph, Canje, Austin, TX
  • Emmanuel Chavez, Tatemó, Houston, TX
  • Mark Clayton, Squable, Houston, TX
  • Christopher Cullum, Cullum’s Attaboy, San Antonio, TX
  • Victoria Elizondo, Cochinita & Co., Houston, TX
  • Geoff Ellis, Mum Foods Smokehouse & Delicatessen, Austin, TX
  • Alexandra Gates, Cochineal, Marfa, TX
  • Joseph Gomez, Con Todo, Austin, TX
  • Andrew Ho, Andrew Samia, and Sean Wen, Curry Boys BBQ, San Antonio, TX
  • Jennifer Hwa Dobbertin, Best Quality Daughter, San Antonio, TX
  • Tracy Malechek-Ezekiel, Birdie’s, Austin, TX
  • Emiliano Marentes, Elemi, El Paso, TX
  • Misti Norris, Petra & the Beast, Dallas, TX
  • Fermín Nuñez, Suerte, Austin, TX
  • Ana Liz Pulido, Ana Liz Taqueria, Mission, TX
  • Anastacia Quiñones-Pittman, José, Dallas, TX
  • Regino Rojas, Purépecha, Dallas, TX
  • Arnulfo Sánchez III, Vaqueros Texas Bar-B-Q, Grapevine, TX
  • Rich Vana, The Heritage Table, Frisco, TX

Tanay Warerkar is a content marketing manager at OpenTable, where he oversees features content and stays on top of the hottest trends and developments in the restaurant industry. He brings years of experience as a food editor and reporter having worked at the San Francisco Chronicle, Eater, and the New York Daily News, to name a few.

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