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2009 James Beard Awards


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Is that any worse than Jose Andres as an Outstanding Chef? Does he even remember where his restaurants are located?

Good point. Maybe restaurateur of the year. His proximity to the actual menu decisions, let alone the food that appears in front of his customers is probably no closer than a message to and from his Blackberry.

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Is that any worse than Jose Andres as an Outstanding Chef? Does he even remember where his restaurants are located?

We disagree on this, Steve and Zora. Carol and I went to MiniBar a week ago and we both thought it was an incredible experience-and we expected a lot! I honestly believe it is one of the most creative as well as delicious and best restaurant experiences in the United States. Certainly among the most unusual. For MiniBar alone I believe he is a treasure for this city. Several of his other restaurants are quite another matter!!!! I will totally agree with you both on this. But MiniBar, for us, was extraordinary.

And, there is talk, that they will expand it to 18 seats.

We loved it and thank him for introducing it here.

For Todd, it is justice. He is as good as there is. And, as passionate.

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I was pleased to see Cork ("The Little Restaurant That Could") on the Best New list. And is Monis still a "rising star?" Seems risen to me but, of course, he's not in New York or LA and so barely exists.

Hard to pick a favorite chef in the "Best Chef, Mid-Atlantic," though I assume that if Haidar wins the party will be memorable (if you can remember it) -- on assumes the Pure will flow like water.

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Here are the eligibility rules:

With all of the great restaurants we have here in DC, which two did they choose as candidates for best? Vidalia, absolutely. But Kinkead's? Come on.

"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 ten consecutive years."

Is that any worse than Jose Andres as an Outstanding Chef? Does he even remember where his restaurants are located?

"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 a chef for at least the past five years." (Furthermore, the only people eligible for the Outstanding Chef award are ones that have previously won a regional award.)

And is Monis still a "rising star?" Seems risen to me but, of course, he's not in New York or LA and so barely exists.

"A chef, age 30 or younger, who displays an impressive talent, and who is likely to make a significant industry impact in years to come."

Cheers,

Rocks.

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I assume that if Haidar wins the party will be memorable (if you can remember it) -- one assumes the Pure will flow like water.

For the 99.99% of you who have no clue what waitman is talking about he is referring to the magnum of Domaine La Barroche 2005 Chateauneuf du Pape "Pure" (a reference to the fact that it is 100% grenache) which I poured at the awesome DR.com wagyu tasting at Vidalia. Sadly, Parker anointed it the wine of the vintage in a rereview a few months later - since then, it is impossible to find and when it does appear the price is prohibitive.

(http://www.winecommune.com/lot.cfm/wine/2005-Domaine-La-Barroche-quot;Purequot;-Chateauneuf-du-Pape---Like-Rayas-and-Saint-Jean--MAGNUM---RP-99-pts!/lotID/6345109.html

That said, if chef wins, I promise it will flow like water.

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Congratulations to Editor Joe Yonan, Jane Black, Dave McIntyre, Bonnie Benwick, Tom Sietsema, Jason Wilson, and the rest of the team at The Washington Post for winning the 2009 James Beard Award this evening for Best Newspaper Food Section!

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With the James Beard award only hours away I'm keeping my fingers crossed. But then there is Nate Appleman of A16 who gained much publicity with a very popular cookbook this past year. Oh, let me just shut up before I jinx it. :rolleyes:

I see Monis, Armstrong, and The Bazaar winning their respective categories tomorrow night, with Andres even-odds to win the national award for Best Chef (which is, at the end of the day, a popularity contest - and there's no denying his popularity).

Good luck to all nominees, and we'll see what the next 24 hours bring.

Cheers,

Rocks.

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I see Monis, Armstrong, and The Bazaar winning their respective categories tomorrow night, with Andres even-odds to win the national award for Best Chef (which is, at the end of the day, a popularity contest - and there's no denying his popularity).

Good luck to all nominees, and we'll see what the next 24 hours bring.

Cheers,

Rocks.

Bazaar is getting much praise. But honestly if you are correct and it wins over Ko I will be very surprised. Hard going up against the mighty Chang in anything as of late. But then media is calling Paul Liebrandt the come back kid and he has always had a following in the industry.

Speaking of popularity contest. Here is a good analogy I think to raise an eyebrow, or at least it did mine. Jeremy Fox of Ubuntu nominated for Best Chef: Pacific. Now don't get me wrong, I have the utmost respect for Jeremy Fox. Super talented guy doing amazing things with vegetable's. But then on the other hand Ubuntu opened August 20, 2007 and already a best chef region nomination compared to Johnny's 'Rising' nomination? ( Insert head scratching bewildered face here) :rolleyes:

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I think the food at Corton is better than the food at Ko by a long shot. The restaurants are sort of similar in some ways, both are "re-imaginings" of 4 star (NYT) food. Both places also have enough service issues to keep them from being the perfect restaurant. I am hoping that this is the only award in the whole wide world that Chang does not get, simply to see someone else win something.

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I think the food at Corton is better than the food at Ko by a long shot. The restaurants are sort of similar in some ways, both are "re-imaginings" of 4 star (NYT) food. Both places also have enough service issues to keep them from being the perfect restaurant. I am hoping that this is the only award in the whole wide world that Chang does not get, simply to see someone else win something.

Agree.

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Where will be the best place for real-time updates/tweets/posts of tonight's winners?

Right here.

My how things have changed from just three and four years ago, when I was The Lone Tweeter ... click and clack.

Is there any serious doubt that this event will eventually be televised live?

[P.S. I think we can move this forum to the top of the website for the night.]

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With the James Beard award only hours away I'm keeping my fingers crossed. But then there is Nate Appleman of A16 who gained much publicity with a very popular cookbook this past year. Oh, let me just shut up before I jinx it.

I'll learn to shut my mouth! :rolleyes:

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And the winners are (according to a panel of judges many of whom rarely venture beyond Manhattan):

Outstanding Chef: Dan Barber, Blue Hill, NYC

Outstanding Restaurant: Jean Georges (Chef/Owner: Jean-Georges Vongerichten, Owner: Phil Suarez), NYC

Outstanding Restaurateur: Drew Nieporent, Myriad Restaurant Group

Best New Restaurant: Momofuku Ko (Chefs/Owners: David Chang and Peter Serpico), NYC

Outstanding Pastry Chef: Gina DePalma, Babbo, NYC

Outstanding Service: Daniel (Owners: Daniel Boulud, and Joel Smilow), NYC

Outstanding Restaurant Graphics: Korn Design, Designers: Korn, Cort├ęs, and Ross, Project: The Corner Office (Denver CO)

Outstanding Restaurant Design: Design Bureaux, Inc., Designer: Thomas Schlesser, Project: The Publican (Chicago IL)

Cookbook of the Year: Fat: An Appreciation of a Misunderstood Ingredient, with Recipes, Jennifer McLagan (Ten Speed Press)

Book, Writing and Literature: In Defense of Food, Michael Pollan (Penguin Press)

Book, Photography: The Big Fat Duck Cookbook, Photographer: Dominic Davies, Artist: Dave McKean (Bloomsbury USA)

Book, Single Subject: Fat: An Appreciation of a Misunderstood Ingredient, with Recipes, Jennifer McLagan (Ten Speed Press)

Book, International: Beyond the Great Wall: Recipes and Travels in the Other China, Alford, and Duguid (Artisan)

Book, General Cooking: How to Cook Everything (Completely Revised Tenth Anniversary Edition), Mark Bittman (John Wiley & Sons)

Book, Reference and Scholarship: The Flavor Bible, Page, and Dornenburg (Little, Brown)

Book, American Cooking: Screen Doors and Sweet Tea: Recipes and Tales from a Southern Cook, Martha Hall Foose (Clarkson Potter)

Book, Healthy Focus: The Food You Crave: Luscious Recipes for a Healthy Life, Ellie Krieger (Taunton)

Book, Baking and Dessert: Bakewise: the Hows and Whys of Successful Baking, Shirley O. Corriher (Scribner)

Book, Beverage: WineWise, Kolpan, Smith, and Weiss (The Culinary Institute of America / John Wiley & Sons)

Book, Cooking from a Professional POV: Alinea, Grant Achatz (Achatz LLC / Ten Speed Press)

Best Chef, New York City: Gabriel Kreuther, The Modern

Best Chef, Northeast: Rob Evans, Hugo's, Portland ME

Best Chef, Mid-Atlantic: Jose Garces, Amada, Philadelphia PA

Best Chef, Southeast: Mike Lata, Fig, Charleston SC

Best Chef, Great Lakes: Michael Symon, Lola, Cleveland OH

Best Chef, Midwest: Tim McKee, La Belle Vie, Minneapolis MN

Best Chef, South: John Currence, City Grocery, Oxford MS

Best Chef, Northwest: Maria Hines, Tilth, Seattle WA

Best Chef, Southwest: Paul Bartolotta, Bartolotta Ristorante di Mare (at the Wynn), Las Vegas NV

Best Chef, Pacific: Douglas Keane, Cyrus, Healdsburg CA

Outstanding Wine Service: Le Bernardin (Wine Director: Aldo Sohm), NYC

Outstanding Wine and Spirits Professional: Dale DeGroff, Dale DeGroff Co., NYC

Rising Star Chef of the Year: Nate Appleman, A16, San Francisco

Edited by ol_ironstomach
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Scandal: Note the time of the post. NYT announces ahead of the stage announcement.

I just got home - the post is time-stamped 9 PM. What time was the stage announcement made?

--

I'm not sure what to say, except I feel like I'm supposed to say something. As silly as this might sound to some of our readers, I feel like my team has just lost the World Series.

My dinner at Amada last year was extremely disappointing (click for details), to the point where I'm sitting here scratching my head wondering what the judges could possibly have been thinking (or drinking). Regardless, as we all know, even the best of restaurants can have terrible evenings, and one meal is not even close to a sufficient sample size - I quietly offer my congratulations to Chef Jose Garces.

For Cathal and Johnny, who by now are both overqualified (yes, overqualified) and overdue to win their respective categories - I'll leave both of you with a story that happened to me a couple of years ago.

An acquaintance of mine is a prominent James Beard judge, very well-known and highly respected across the United States. He or she (I'm not going to say which) was telling me about who (s)he voted for. I paraphrase:

'And I voted for XXX YYY, because he's a friend of mine, even though I don't like his restaurant.'

"You can't do that!" I said, in an outburst of complete indignation and innocence.

Response: "The Hell I can't."

The James Beard Awards are wonderful when the people you're pulling for win; they become terribly flawed when the people you're pulling for lose. All you have to do is look at the history of victors, and you can see the awards are ultimately more of a public-relations contest and popularity poll, than any Final Arbiter of quality.

Okay, enough sour grapes from me. Cathal and Johnny, keep doing exactly what you're doing, and good things will come to both of you.

Cheers,

Rocks.

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The James Beard Awards are wonderful when the people you're pulling for win; they become terribly flawed when the people you're pulling for lose. All you have to do is look at the history of victors, and you can see the awards are ultimately more of a public-relations contest and popularity poll, than any Final Arbiter of quality.

Which is not to say that some incredibly deserving chefs, writers, and editors haven't taken home the award in the past, and today.

Of the restaurant winners, I've only eaten at Cyrus. There may be better restaurants in the area, but Cyrus is up there with Per Se and Komi as one of the best meals of my life. It may take some more time for Washington's finest to get the recognition they deserve, but it certainly doesn't lessen their esteem in my mind.

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I can understand Philly's Amada: for me it was superb on both of our visits. Of course my wife will take a bite out of the exact same dish as I and passionately disagree with my opinion!! Hugo's is outstanding in Portland which has also become a real destination for foodies in the past several years. Fore Street is a personal favorite with a half dozen visits since it opened. Certainly, it is the trendsetter in New England. Does anyone remember when Saveur called it the best "restaurant in the United States...that nobody has heard of?" I also have friends in Cleveland and Minneapolis who absolutely love the restaurants that won in those areas. Both Fig and City Grocery I'll try over the next five or six weeks as part of business trips and reservations "for one" as a compensation for travel. Bartolotta has received a great deal of positive spin in Vegas-I"ll be able to try it for a trade show this fall. (Doesn't say much for Guy Savoy, Robuchon, etc. but says a lot for the chef who is actually IN his restaurant! Really liked Lotus of Siam, though!)(Doesn't say a lot for Atlanta, New Orleans, Miami, Dallas, Houston, Los Angeles, Phoenix, etc.)(What happened to Chicago? Wow!!!) I do feel for Jose along with Cathal. Both were truly deserving. Johnny Monis? Incredible!! Almost as incredible as Fabio not winning the same category (he lost to Jack's "Luxury Oyster Bar" and I believe the chef went back to New Orleans the next year). Still, I thought Cathal would win this year along with Johnny. They are both supremely talented-we are fortunate to have them here.

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The information was announced on the web 35 minutes later. Here
I was following several people who were at the event, live tweeting it, and The Food Section, for one, drew attention to the fact that the information had already gone up on the NY Times blog before the announcements were made at the ceremony. Apparently, the information was embargoed until 9 PM.
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I was following several people who were at the event, live tweeting it, and The Food Section, for one, drew attention to the fact that the information had already gone up on the NY Times blog before the announcements were made at the ceremony. Apparently, the information was embargoed until 9 PM.

Wow. They use embargoes? So news outlets don't even have to send reporters? That's so goofy. :rolleyes:

Then I guess that would tip the scales for me and make this entirely a PR event. Too bad.

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