Letter from the President: James Beard Restaurants Around the Country


James Beard once said, “I don’t like gourmet cooking, or ‘this’ or ‘that’ cooking. I like good cooking.” To be sure, Beard relished the fine-dining establishments he frequently visited, but he also loved the neighborhood restaurants where simple food and good company were on the menu. In recognition of that type of restaurant, in 1998 the James Beard Foundation added the America’s Classics category to the annual James Beard Awards ceremony. The criteria for these awards are that the restaurants must have timeless appeal and be beloved in their regions for quality food that reflects the character of their communities. They also must have been in existence for at least ten years and be locally owned to qualify. I am happy to announce that our newest cookbook, James Beard’s All-American... Read more >

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Letter from the President: James Beard Across the U.S.A.


By the time you read this, we’ll be in the final stretch of summer. This is the time of year when our offices are buzzing with excitement about our fall lineup of programs and events. And at home, my family is still enjoying an abundance of zucchini and the great Jersey tomatoes from my husband Colin’s vegetable garden. (See this easy and delicious James Beard recipe, below. I use refrigerated biscuit dough.)


Our director of house programming, Izabela Wojcik, has planned some wonderful Beard House dinners. And more than 20 great dinners will be happening all across America as part of our Celebrity Chef Tour and Friends of James Beard Benefit events.


We’re also about to embark on our third annual JBF Taste America program, which will bring us to ten cities throughout the... Read more >

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Letter from the President: Seven Ideas for a Healthy New Year


“Eat as if your life depends on it,” said Kathleen Frith, president of the nonprofit institute Glynwood and a speaker at the 2014 JBF Food Conference. As many of you know, the James Beard Foundation has been convening thought leaders and stakeholders from various sectors of the food industry for several years. In the past the conference has addressed topics such as hunger, trust, and how the media may influence what we ultimately eat. This past fall, our fifth JBF Food Conference explored the link between food and health and how better-quality food may be the key to a healthier America. As we begin 2015, I want to share with you seven great quotes from our conference speakers that can help guide us all to a healthier new year.




1. “Families who eat at least five meals a week together are 20 percent less likely
to have children who are overweight.”

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Letter from the President: A Recipe for a Delicious Weekend

James Beard Foundation's Taste America®


What’s even better than dinner prepared by a nationally recognized, critically acclaimed chef? Dinner prepared by multiple chefs of that caliber, of course!


As I write this, we are gearing up to take the James Beard Foundation on the road for our second annual national epicurean tour, Taste America® presented by Chase Sapphire Preferred® Visa Signature. This year, we’re making stops in ten cities, where we’ll be joined by our Taste America All-Stars, a select group of some of the country’s most talked about
chefs, led by this year’s honorary All-Star Chef, Daniel Boulud. (See below for cities, dates, and All-Stars).


What makes this year’s Taste America so special is that we are pairing these All-Stars with local award-winning chefs from each city to create unique one-night-only dinners that people will be talking... Read more >

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Letter from the President: If Music Be the Food of Love, Play On!

David H. Kock Theater, home to the 2014 James Beard Awards


Shakespeare had it right! For centuries the musical arts and the culinary arts have been linked. And a great chef, like a talented musician, plays all the right notes.


Long before he became television’s first foodie, James Beard pursued a career in music. After studying opera in London, he came to New York with the dream of making it at the Metropolitan Opera or on Broadway. But like many struggling actors, he ended up paying the rent through a career in food. And aren’t we all better for it?


Many of the chefs we know and love had earlier careers as musicians, or have been influenced by music in some way. Our dining experiences are enhanced by custom-made playlists, and chefs have achieved what many have called “rock star” status. This year the James Beard Awards theme is “Sounds of the City,” and it celebrates this enduring relationship between music and food. After the medals are handed out, the gala reception at Lincoln Center’s... Read more >

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Letter from the President: The Quotable James Beard

James Beard


James Beard may be known most famously for saying, “Food is our common ground,” but his two dozen cookbooks are peppered with wonderful one-liners that illustrate his wit and underscore his love of food. You could call these Beard quotes “words to live by” for the coming year. We thought we’d share our favorites, one for each month of 2014!



“Don’t be the type of host who has to be put to bed by the guests.”



“With all of my restaurant experience I have come to learn one thing... There are great restaurants, good restaurants, and poor restaurants, but no restaurant is better than the performance you can exact from it by knowing the chef.”



“Good bread and good butter go together. They are one of the perfect marriages in gastronomy, and they never fail to cheer me.”



“How much more... Read more >

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Three Ways to Support JBF This Holiday Season


As we look back on this remarkable year at the James Beard Foundation, we are thankful for the generous supporters who continue to help us grow and develop our longstanding and exciting new programs. This holiday season, as you plan your year-end giving, we hope you’ll consider supporting the JBF programs that are most meaningful to you.



James Beard Foundation's Scholarships for Future Chefs

Scholarships for Future Chefs

It was with great sorrow that we said good-bye to Clay Triplette, a dear member of our James Beard Foundation family, who passed away on September 9 at the age of 86. Clay, who had worked with James Beard for decades preceding Mr. Beard’s death in 1985, was the heart of the James Beard House and especially loved the holidays. Your contribution to the Clay Triplette Scholarship Fund helps the Foundation honor Mr. Clay’s life and work, and helps fund the important culinary education of a deserving student. To donate, click button below and enter Clay Triplette... Read more >

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Letter from the President: The Best Holiday Gift is You

JBF president Susan Ungaro


As we look back on this remarkable year at the James Beard Foundation, my incredible staff and I are thankful for our chefs, members, and students who volunteer their time and talents day in and day out.


I often say that we are only as good as the people who support us. Our Foundation has never been stronger thanks to the individuals on our programming committee who help create unique events at the James Beard house, the bright, promising students who gain experience working in the kitchen with our visiting chefs for those events, and the incredibly talented photographers who capture these dinners for our website and as a keepsake for the visiting chefs.


In addition to these longtime programs, we are also excited about our Young Professionals Committee, made up of individuals enthusiastic about bringing new members and diners to our table. With the support of our volunteers and the members and donors who have contributed their time and money to our many... Read more >

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Letter from the President: Why Leadership Matters in the Food World


You only have to read the front page of a newspaper, flip through a magazine, or even glance at your Twitter feed to know that the world’s food system is in crisis. In our country alone, almost 15 percent of households are food insecure, American farmland has been disappearing for decades, and in the past 30 years childhood obesity has more than doubled.


Over the past several years, we have expanded our Foundation’s mission to address some of these issues and to establish and support links between the culinary arts, the community, and the key sustainability and public health issues of our time.



To encourage conversation about making our food world a healthier, safer, and more sustainable place, our Foundation gathered thought leaders three years ago for the premiere of... Read more >

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Letter from the President: Taste America

James Beard Foundation's Taste America


James Beard was an educator, prolific cookbook author, pioneering television personality, and a promoter of American cuisine long before “farm-to-table” and “American regional cooking” were part of our culinary lexicon. He was a tireless traveler, bringing his endorsement of good food and recipes prepared with fresh, wholesome American ingredients, to a country just becoming aware of its own culinary heritage.


As a tribute to his legacy, this fall we are taking our Foundation on the road for a national culinary festival, Taste America. With the help of our presenting sponsor, Chase Sapphire Preferred® Visa Signature, we’ll be stopping in ten cities: Boston, Chicago, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Miami, New York City, Philadelphia, Phoenix, San Francisco, and Washington, D.C.


Joining us will be a team of Taste America All-Stars led... Read more >

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JBF Kitchen Cam