2018 James Beard Awards announces finalists, including five Colorado nods

The James Beard Award nominees have been whittled down, and two Colorado restaurants, one chef, one publication and one architecture firm are still in the running.

Last month it was announced that eight Colorado food and drink purveyors made the short list of semifinalists, double what we scored in 2017. Some of those were newcomers to what’s considered the Oscars of the food world, with Annette and its chef Caroline Glover getting nods for Best New Restaurant and Best Chef: Southwest, and Andy Clark of Louisville’s Moxie Bread Co. getting a shout-out in the Outstanding Baker category. (For a full list of our Colorado semifinalists, click here.)

Those surviving to make it into the final five, however, are familiar names that have been to the dance before.

Frasca Food and Wine is a finalist yet again for Outstanding Restaurant, and I really think this is their year. I also predicted that this would be the year Scott Baio makes a triumphant comeback, so we’ll see how I do when it comes to clairvoyance.

Our other finalists are The Little Nell in Aspen, up for Outstanding Wine Program, and Mercantile Dining & Provision’s Alex Seidel, repping us in the Best Chef: Southwest category.

But wait! There’s more! Paonia’s independent media organization High Country News got a nod in the journalism category for Julia O’Malley’s feature story “The Teenage Whaler’s Tale” and local architects Shears Adkins Rockmore got an Outstanding Restaurant Design nomination for a project in Arkansas.

Fingers and forks crossed that Colorado scores big when winners are announced on May 7.

[Read More …]

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