Earlier this evening, the 2016 James Beard Foundation Awards were held at the Lyric Opera of Chicago, uniting award nominees from across the country for a who's-who celebration of restaurant industry folk. San Francisco was expected to win at least a couple, considering the 2016 finalist list consisted of quite a few Bay Area standouts: Liholiho Yacht Club for best new restaurant; Belinda Leong and Michel Suas of B. Patisserie and William Werner of Craftsman and Wolves for outstanding baker; Bar Agricole for outstanding bar program; and Michael Tusk of Quince for outstanding chef (Quince was also nominated for outstanding service). Michael Mina was nominated for outstanding restaurateur, and three chefs were nominated in the best chef (West) category: Matthew Accarrino of SPQR, Dominique Crenn of Atelier Crenn, and Corey Lee of Benu.
Alas, we took home nothing. Nada. Los Angeles and Chicago, on the other hand, took home three prizes, while New York came away with six. Despite the shutout, though, there were a few SF connections among the winners: Kevin Friedman won for outstanding restaurateur, and while most of his restaurants are in New York, he's also behind North Beach's Tosca Café. Best chef: New York City went to Jonathan Waxman; he won for Barbuto in NYC but just recently opened Waxman's in Ghirardelli Square. We'll take it. There's always next year, right?
Check out our full coverage of the 2016 James Beard Foundation Awards here.