Stories / Awards, Interviews

Introducing Our New Cookbook, "James Beard's All-American Eats"

Anna Mowry

Anna Mowry

February 23, 2016



What makes a restaurant an America’s Classic? The James Beard Awards committee’s official definition is “a restaurant with timeless appeal, beloved in its region for quality food that reflects the character of its community.” An America’s Classic also must have been operating for at least ten years and be locally owned. Unofficially, but fittingly, these establishments are often brimming with history and stories; eating at one can transport you to a bygone era. All are worth a detour, some extra miles on the odometer.



Since 1998, nearly 100 eateries, from Prince’s Hot Chicken in Nashville to Ben’s Chili Bowl in Washington, D.C., have joined the ranks of the America’s Classics. We’re nearing the reveal of this year’s winners, but first we’re excited to announce the release of our new America’s Classic–themed cookbook, James Beard’s All-American Eats: Recipes and Stories from Our Best-Loved American Restaurants. As Awards committee member John T. Edge writes its introduction, this book is a tribute to “the nation’s vernacular restaurants,” and it comes packed with tales and recipes that are as timely and charming as the America’s Classics themselves. You’ll find a recipe for mouthwatering oven brisket adapted by a Texas barbecue legend, a guide to Southwestern chilies for when you want to cook from the book’s section of Southwestern-based spots, an essay by Doug Grina of Minneapolis favorite Al’s Breakfast, and tons more.  



Our new America's Classics cookbook, James Beard’s All-American Eats: Recipes and Stories from Our Best-Loved Local Restaurantspublished by Rizzoli,​ is on sale now.​ Order your copy!


Anna Mowry is special projects manager at the James Beard Foundation. Find her on Twitter and Instagram.