Lucky Thirteen? Texas Chefs & Restaurants Get Semifinal Slots in James Beard Foundation Awards. It's Like the Oscars of Food.
Fri February 19, 2010 4:13 pm

TEX-AS! TEX-AS! TEX-AS!! Hey! We did pretty well in the semifinals for the James Beard Foundation awards, announced a couple of days ago--thirteen Texas restaurants and chefs got nods. Of course, it ain't like the numbers that New York garners, or Los Angeles (grumble, grumble), but considering the competition, thirteen is a very respectable showing. Following another elimination round, the final winners will be announced in May in New York at the James Beard gala banquet.

Seeing as how I'm in Austin, I'm especially happy that two local restaurants were recognized: Uchi and La Condesa. (La Condesa owner Jesse Herman could have been speaking for all the nominees when he said, "It's an honor to be included in such great company--we hope it directs attention to the great local food scene.")

Here are the nominees for the 2010 James Beard Foundation Awards:

SEMIFINALIST FOR OUTSTANDING RESTAURATEUR

Jim Goode and Levi Goode, Goode Company Restaurants, Houston

SEMIFINALIST FOR OUTSTANDING CHEF

Robert Del Grande, RDG + Bar Annie, Houston

Stephan Pyles, Stephan Pyles, Dallas

SEMIFINALIST FOR RISING STAR CHEF OF THE YEAR

Justin Basye, Stella Sola, Houston

SEMIFINALIST FOR BEST NEW RESTAURANT

La Condesa, Austin

Samar, Dallas

SEMIFINALIST FOR BEST PASTRY CHEF

Plinio Sandalio, Textile, Houston

Philip Speer, Uchi, Austin

SEMIFINALISTS FOR BEST CHEF, SOUTHWEST

Bryan Caswell, Reef, Houston

Tyson Cole, Uchi, Austin

Sharon A. Hage, York Street, Dallas

Richard Knight and James Silk, Feast, Houston

Armando Pomales, Cafe Central, El Paso (Cafe Central is the source of the totally outrageous image at the top of this post! "Too much is never enough!")

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