Ina Garten, Bobby Flay and Damaris Phillips Among 2018 James Beard Foundation Award Nominees

Food Network hosts were among those who got nods.

Hosts Bobby Flay and Damaris Phillips and guest Ina Garten smile and pose for the camera, as seen on Food Network’s Bobby and Damaris Show, Season1.

It may not feel a whole lot like spring in some parts of the country, but here’s one way you know the season is right around the corner: The James Beard Foundation has just announced the nominees for its annual awards, a red carpet bonanza of the food world. Prestigious and sprawling, the Beard awards recognize outstanding performance in 60 categories, honoring cookbooks, broadcast media, restaurants and chefs, restaurant design, and more. 

The 2018 nominees were revealed Wednesday morning during a breakfast at Parc by Stephen Starr in Philadelphia, where those in attendance enjoyed Poached Eggs with Piperade and French Feta, Herb-Encrusted Cold-Poached Beef Filet with Watercress-Mint Salad and Horseradish Cream, and Hazelnut Financiers and Miniature Coffee Cakes prepared by Parc executive chef William Quinn. 

The event was live-streamed on Twitter, but those who missed it can find the complete list of nominees at jamesbeard.org/awards. The winners will be named in two batches. On Friday, April 27, 2018, the 2018 James Beard Media Awards, honoring cookbook authors, food journalists, and culinary broadcast producers and hosts, will be announced in a ceremony to be held at Pier Sixty at Chelsea Piers in New York City.

The remaining award winners — in the categories of Restaurant and Chef and Restaurant Design as well as special achievement awards — will be named at the James Beard Awards Gala at the Lyric Opera of Chicago on Monday, May 7, 2018. That event is open to the general public — at $500 a ticket.

Among this year’s nominees for Outstanding Personality/Host is Food Network’s Ina Garten, who has gotten the nod for her Food Network show Barefoot Contessa: Cook Like a Pro. Pati Jinich of Pati’s Mexican Table (WETA Washington; Distributed Nationally by American Public Television) and Vivian Howard of A Chef’s Life (PBS) were the other nominees. Garten has won twice before in that category — in 2014 and 2015 — and has been nominated numerous times in various JBF categories in recent years.

Ina’s Barefoot Contessa: Cook Like a Pro, produced by Rachel Purnell, Olivia Ball and Bridget Lumley, is also nominated in the category of Television Program, in Studio or Fixed Location. But hers isn’t the only Food Network show recognized in that category. The Bobby and Damaris Show, hosted by Bobby Flay and Damaris Phillips and produced by Bobby Flay, Kim Martin and Kirsty Nordal, has also been nominated. Bobby was nominated in that category in 2011 and 2015 and has won three previous Beard awards, including in 1993, for Rising Star Chef of the Year.

The two Food Network shows face off against The Latin Kitchen, hosted by Luis Valenzuela, Juan Pablo Gonzalez and Luis “Tigretón” Leon and produced by Chris Knight, which airs on Gusto.

This year’s nominated cookbooks span several categories. Homegrown: Cooking from My New England Roots by Matt Jennings (Artisan Books), The Lost Kitchen by Erin French (Clarkson Potter) and The Sioux Chef's Indigenous Kitchen by Sean Sherman with Beth Dooley (University of Minnesota Press) are nominated in the American category, while Nopalito by Gonzalo Guzman and Stacy Adimando (Ten Speed Press), Paladares by Anya von Bremzen and Megan Fawn Schlow (Abrams) and The Palestinian Table by Reem Kassis (Phaidon) are the International category nominees.

Christopher Kimball's Milk Street: The New Home Cooking by Christopher Kimball (Little, Brown and Company), Dinner: Changing the Game by Melissa Clark (Clarkson Potter) and Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat by Samin Nosrat (Simon and Schuster) are nominated in the General category.

California was well-represented in the category of Best New Restaurant, with nominees including The Charter Oak in St. Helena, Felix Trattoria in Venice and Kismet in Los Angeles, along with Empellón Midtown in New York City and JuneBaby in Seattle.

The Outstanding Chef category includes Ashley Christensen of Poole’s Diner (Raleigh, North Carolina), Gabrielle Hamilton of Prune (New York City), David Kinch of Manresa (Los Gatos, California), Christopher Kostow of The Restaurant at Meadowood (St. Helena, California) and Donald Link of Herbsaint (New Orleans).

And that’s just the tip of the nominations iceberg. For the complete list of the 2018 James Beard Foundation Award nominees, click here.

Congrats — and best of luck — to all the nominees.

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