James Beard Foundation Media Awards Celebrates Good Food for Good at Home and Afar

We've got all the scoop on this year's winners.

If you’re a movie buff, you tune in to the Oscars. If you’re a theatergoer, you surely care about the Tony Awards. But food people like us — we have our eyes on the James Beard Foundation Awards. Every year the James Beard Foundation recognizes the very best work being done in the world of food, from pieces in the media, like articles, podcasts, videos and TV shows, to the chefs and restaurateurs staffing eateries around the country. The restaurant and chef awards are set to take place at the Awards Gala in Chicago on May 6, but the Broadcast Media Awards were given out tonight in New York City at a sold-out dinner celebrating Good Food for Good.

In the book award category, the subjects of the winning publications were as varied as the dishes we enjoyed at dinner. (Malaysian and Indonesian fare landed on our plates for the first and second courses, both inspired by chefs from Philly.) While destination-focused titles like Tokyo New Wave and Feast: Food of the Islamic World won for best photography and international work, respectively, several other titles highlighting home were praised as well. Canned: The Rise and Fall of Consumer Confidence in the American Food Industry earned the Reference, History, and Scholarship award, while Buttermilk Graffiti: A Chef’s Journey to Discover America’s New Melting-Pot Cuisine took home the prize for best writing.

If you’ve ever drooled over a video of an insanely huge cheese pull or a massive ice cream sundae, you know well the power of a food video. That magnetism is exactly what the broadcast award nominees had in common. Food Network and Cooking Channel chefs were well-represented among them in several categories. Ina Garten’s Barefoot Contessa and Alton Brown’s Cooking Channel hit, Good Eats: Reloaded, were among the Television Program, in Studio or Fixed Location nominees, while Molly Yeh was among those touted as a nominee for Outstanding Personality. The beloved late Anthony Bourdain’s program, Anthony Bourdain: Explore Parts Unknown, was recognized for its achievements in the Visual and Technical Excellence category, much to the satisfaction of the crowd, which roared with applause at the announcement.

In a new category honoring Jonathan Gold, the great Los Angeles Times restaurant critic who passed away in 2018, Brett Anderson from Nola.com | The Times-Picayune won for his local voice in a series of stories that resonated with readers at home and afar. Other journalism award recipients included writers from The Bitter Southerner, The New Food Economy and The New York Times.

The entire list of winners can be found here.

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