Arizona James Beard Award Nominees

Update: Unfortunately–and very surprisingly–none of the Valley’s glorious chefs or restaurants are among this year’s James Beard Foundation Award finalists. For a list of nominees, visit www.jbfawards.com. Winners will be announced in May.

Need proof that Arizona is home to some of the nation’s most incredible culinary talent? (You know, besides the amazing food at our local restaurants.) Well, eight of our state’s finest are among the list of the 2009 James Beard Foundation Awards semifinalists. This list will be cut down to five nominees per category next month, with the winners being announced on May 4.

Sam Fox, of Fox Restaurant Concepts, and the man behind such popular ventures are Sauce, Bloom, North and Olive + Ivy is up for Outstanding Restauranter.

Vincent Guerithault

Vincent Guerithault

Local culinary legends Janos Wilder of Janos in Tucson and Vincent Guerithault of Vincent on Camelback are in the running for Outstanding Chef.

Phoenix’s NOCA received a nod for Best New Restaurant.

Restaurant Row’s Kazimierz World Wine Bar in Old Town Scottsdale is nominated for Outstanding Wine Service.

Beau Macmillan

Beau Macmillan

Marc Ehrler of Ventana Room at Tucson’s Loews Ventana Canyon Resort, Kevin Binkley of Cave Creek’s Binkley’s Restaurant, and Beau MacMillan of elements at Sanctuary Camelback Mountain Resort and Spa are all among the preliminary nominees for Best Chef: South.

Congrats to all the amazing nominees! Check back next month when we bring you the list of finalists for the 2009 James Beard Foundation Awards.

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