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NC chefs named James Beard semi-finalists

NC chefs named James Beard semi-finalists

Before 2016, San Antonio had been absent from the list for two years.

The list includes some familiar names in Arizona food and drink - as well as one notable omission. The category honors restaurants open for than 10 years that have been "a national standard bearer of consistent quality and excellence in food, atmosphere and service". Lomas was nominated a year ago in the same category.

Miami, however, was shut out of the Outstanding Bar Program, Outstanding Pastry Chef, and Outstanding Chef awards, though Andrew Carmellini (The Dutch) was nominated for an Outstanding Chef award for Locanda Verde in NY. This is Smedstad's first Beard nomination. But Houston has an unusually high number of chefs and restaurateurs this morning who can say, "It's an honor just to be nominated".

Also earning recognition this year: Elizabeth Degener of Cape May's Enfin Farms, a semifinalist for outstanding baker.

More news: Trump's contested pick for labor secretary withdraws: White House

Semifinalists for the prestigious James Beard Foundation's 2017 awards were announced Wednesday (Feb. 15), including 19 chefs and restaurants from New Orleans. See this year's full semifinalist list at the end of this press release or online at jamesbeard.org/awards.

Also recognized as a semifinalist in this category previous year, Bluestem received a major renovation in 2014.It continues to receive kudos as "a national standard bearer of consistent quality and excellence in food, atmosphere and service", with executive chef Andrew Longres recently promoted to run the kitchen. Nominations will also be announced live via the Foundation's Facebook Live video feed and in real time on Twitter.

Five finalists per category will be unveiled March 15, and the winners will be announced May 1 at the James Beard Foundation Awards Gala at the Lyric Opera of Chicago.

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