North and South Carolina James Beard Semifinalists Announced!

The James Beard Foundation released its 2016 list of Restaurant and Chef Awards semifinalists.

Congratulations to North and South Carolina Chefs and Restaurateurs! Here’s the list:

Best New Restaurant
A restaurant opened in the calendar year before the award will be given that already displays excellence in food, beverage, and service, and that is likely to make a significant impact in years to come.

Death & Taxes, Raleigh, NC

Outstanding Chef
A working chef in America whose career has set national industry standards and who has served as an inspiration to other food professionals. Eligible candidates must have been working as a chef for the past five years.

Ashley Christensen, Poole’s Downtown Diner, Raleigh, NC

Outstanding Service
A restaurant in operation five or more years that demonstrates high standards of hospitality and service.

Charleston Grill, Charleston, SC

Outstanding Wine Program
A restaurant in operation five or more years that serves as a standard bearer for excellence in wine service through a well-presented wine list, knowledgeable staff, and efforts to educate customers about wine.

FIG, Charleston, SC

Best Chef: Southeast
Nate Allen, Knife and Fork, Spruce Pine, NC
Jeremiah Bacon, The Macintosh, Charleston, SC
Brian Canipelli, Cucina 24, Asheville, NC
Scott Crawford, Standard Foods, Raleigh, NC
Steven Devereaux Greene, Herons in the Umstead Hotel, Cary, NC
Vivian Howard, Chef & the Farmer, Kinston, NC
Kevin Johnson, The Grocery, Charleston, SC
Matthew Kelly, Mateo, Durham, NC
Joe Kindred, Kindred, Davidson, NC
Aaron Vandemark, Panciuto, Hillsborough, NC

Outstanding Baker
A chef or baker who prepares breads, pastries or desserts in a retail bakery, and who serves as a national standard-bearer of excellence. Must have been a baker or pastry chef for at least five years.

Phoebe Lawless, Scratch Bakery, Durham, NC
Lionel Vatinet, La Farm Bakery, Cary, NC

Outstanding Pastry Chef
A chef or baker who prepares desserts, pastries or breads in a restaurant, and who serves as a national standard bearer of excellence. Must have been a pastry chef or baker for the past five years.

Cynthia Wong, Rhubarb, Asheville, NC