What We're Reading: May 5, 2015


You’re just six steps away from banana bread, any way you like it. [Food52


Celebrate Cinco de Mayo with homemade tamales. [Serious Eats


A coalition of plant food producers has submitted recommendations for the new Dietary Guidelines. [Eat Drink Politics


Why do we sip our lattes first thing in the morning? [... Read more >

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The 2015 James Beard Award Winners!



The Winners of the 2015 James Beard Awards, presented by Lexus.



The 2015 Restaurant and Chef Awards 

Best New Restaurant, Presented by True Refrigeration®
Bâtard, NYC


Outstanding Baker
Jim Lahey, Sullivan Street Bakery, NYC


Outstanding Bar Program, Presented by Tanqueray No. TEN®
The Violet Hour, Chicago

Outstanding Chef, Presented by All-Clad Metalcrafters
Michael Anthony, Gramercy Tavern, NYC


Outstanding Pastry Chef
Christina Tosi, Momofuku, NYC

Outstanding Restaurant, Presented by Acqua Panna® Natural Spring Water
Blue Hill at Stone Barns, Pocantico Hills, NY


Outstanding Restaurateur
Donnie Madia, One Off Hospitality Group, Chicago (Blackbird, Avec... Read more >

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2015 Humanitarian of the Year: Michel Nischan


This award is given to an individual or organization working in the realm of food who has given selflessly and worked tirelessly to better the lives of others and society at large.


More than three decades ago, Michel Nischan was an aspiring musician scrambling to make a living in Chicago. When his parents downsized to a smaller fixer-upper home in the area and Nischan showed up to help them paint, his mother was alarmed by his appearance.


“I was six feet three and 145 pounds, and when my mom saw me, she could count every rib in my body. She said, ‘We’ve got to get you a job in a restaurant. At least you’ll eat,’” Nischan recalls. Behind the stove proved to be a much more lucrative spot than on stage. Nischan’s first food gig at a breakfast truck stop became the launching point for his career as an innovative, esteemed chef and one of the most prominent voices guiding America toward a more affordable, more accessible, and more just food system.


It was a food system that... Read more >

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2015 America's Classics: Beaumont Inn


Beaumont Inn

638 Beaumont Inn Drive, Harrodsburg, KY

Owners: Elizabeth and Dixon Dedman, and Helen and Chuck Dedman


Founded by Glave Goddard and Annie Bell Goddard in 1917, the Beaumont Inn, which opened for business in 1919, is still operated by their descendants. Set in a former women’s college built in 1845, the Beaumont main house is columned and formal. And the menu is deeply rooted in Kentucky. The Dedman family, now at the helm, serves Kentucky products with pride, including Weisenberger meal, Meacham hams, and bourbons from the best distillers in the state. Recipes for dishes like corn pudding and fried chicken, handed down through five generations, form the core of the menu. As their forebears did, the Dedmans serve two-year-old country ham, which they bring to maturation in their own aging house. Little has changed since the days when the pioneering critic Duncan Hines was a regular. “Now write this down for the people in Kentucky,”... Read more >

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2015 America's Classics: Sevilla


Sevilla Restaurant & Bar

62 Charles Street, NYC

Owners: Jose Lloves and Bienvenido Alvarez


The area in Manhattan around 14th Street and Eighth Avenue was known as Little Spain as early as 1900. In addition to community resources like the Spanish Benevolent Society, the neighborhood was also home to a wealth of Spanish restaurants. Sevilla, which began life as an Irish pub in 1923, opened as a Spanish restaurant in 1941 under the direction of Luis Fernandez and Alfonso Uchupi. In 1962 the chef Jose Lloves bought it. Ten years later his brother Bienvenido Alvarez joined as a partner. At Sevilla the walls are decorated with bull heads and oil paintings of busty doñas. The deep and discreet booths are lit by glowing lanterns. The cocktail list is a time capsule of stingers, grasshoppers, and brandy Alexanders. Waiters wearing burgundy vests and bow ties serve tableside from covered metal cazuelas. And... Read more >

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Winner Recap!


Best Chef: New York City: Mark Ladner, Del Posto


Best Chef: Mid-Atlantic: Spike Gjerde, Woodberry Kitchen, Baltimore


Best Chef: Southeast: Jason Stanhope, FIG, Charleston, SC


Best Chef: South: Alon Shaya, Domenica, New Orleans


Best Chef: Northwest: Blaine Wetzel, The Willows Inn on Lummi Island, Lummi Island, WA


Best Chef: Great Lakes: Jonathon Sawyer, Greenhouse Tavern, Cleveland


Best Chef: West: Stuart Brioza and Nicole Krasinski, State Bird Provisions, San Francisco


Best Chef: Southwest: Aaron Franklin, Franklin Barbecue, Austin


Outstanding Wine, Spirits, and Beer Professional: Rajat Parr, Mina Group, San Francisco


Outstanding Wine Program: A16, San Francisco


Outstanding Bar Program: The Violet Hour, Chicago


Best Chef: Northeast: Barry Maiden, Hungry Mother, Cambridge, MA

 ... Read more >

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2015 America's Classics: Archie’s Waeside


Archie’s Waeside

224 4th Avenue Northeast, Le Mars, IA

Owner: Robert Rand


Set in what was once a roadhouse bar, Archie’s Waeside is a citadel of American beef cookery. Seated in commodious booths, in a dining room accented with Christmas tchotchkes, regulars drink perfect Manhattans, snack on house-corned beef and a well-curated relish tray, and eat porterhouses, dry-aged in-house for four weeks.


Archie Jackson, who escaped Russia during the Bolshevik Revolution, learned to cut and dry-age beef in packinghouses in Sioux City in the 1930s and Chicago in the 1940s. He opened the Waeside in 1949. Valerie Rand, his daughter, grew the business in the 1960s and 1970s. Her youngest child, Robert Rand, is now the owner, presiding over a menu that features 12 cuts of dry-aged beef, sourced from farms in northwest Iowa and northeast Nebraska; a large selection of seafood including regional freshwater fish lik... Read more >

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Winner Recap!


Best Chef: West: Stuart Brioza and Nicole Krasinski, State Bird Provisions, San Francisco


Best Chef: Southwest: Aaron Franklin, Franklin Barbecue, Austin


Outstanding Wine, Spirits, and Beer Professional: Rajat Parr, Mina Group, San Francisco


Outstanding Wine Program: A16, San Francisco


Outstanding Bar Program: The Violet Hour, Chicago


Best Chef: Northeast: Barry Maiden, Hungry Mother, Cambridge, MA


Best Chef: Midwest: Gerard Craft, Niche, Clayton, MO


Outstanding Baker: Jim Lahey, Sullivan Street Bakery, NYC


Rising Star Chef of the Year: Jessica Largey, Manresa, Los Gatos, CA

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2015 America's Classics: Guelaguetza



3014 West Olympic Boulevard, Los Angeles

Owners: The Lopez Family


Guelaguetza, founded by Fernando Lopez in 1994, is the center of Oaxacan life in Los Angeles and the setting for countless quinceañeras, weddings, and anniversaries. A big sprawling place in Koreatown, it features live music on a bandstand most nights. Open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, the restaurant draws both homesick Oaxacans and outlanders in search of honest Oaxacan foods. Bricia Lopez, one of the four children of Fernando Lopez and Maria de Jesus, now runs the restaurant along with her brother, Fernando Lopez Jr., and their sister Paulina Lopez. They have added a mezcal bar and often bring in top producers from Mexico for seminars. The real star remains the soulful Oaxacan dishes, including huevos enfrijolados, tamales steamed in banana leaves with mole, bowls of goat stew, and big rounds of tlayudas, baked flour tortillas topped with semi-dri... Read more >

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2015 James Beard Foundation Lifetime Achievement Award: Richard Melman

The Lifetime Achievement award is given to an individual whose lifetime body of work has had a positive and long-lasting impact on the way we eat, cook, and/or think about food in America.


Restaurateur Richard Melman has always given his three children the same advice: find something you’re truly passionate about and then work diligently at it. “It’s hard when you do things just for money,” he says. Especially, he notes, if you work in restaurants. “The restaurant business is too difficult if you’re not in love with it.”


Melman would know better than almost anyone. The founder and chairman of Lettuce Entertain You Enterprises, he currently oversees more than 100 restaurants nationwide. But even though he got his start in the business early, helping out in his family’s eatery as a child and working at a soda fountain as a teenager, Melman wasn’t always convinced that the restaurant life was for him.


“I backed into the industry,” he says. “I was a horrible student; I quit college b... Read more >

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