Food & dining

Check out the 2018 James Beard award semifinalists from the Northeast

Karen Akunowicz at Myers + Chang in Boston.
Aram Boghosian for The Boston Globe
Karen Akunowicz at Myers + Chang in Boston.

Best Chef: Northeast

A chef who has set new or consistent standards of excellence in the region. May be from any kind of dining establishment and must have been working as a chef for at least five years, with the three most recent years spent in the region. (CT, MA, ME, NH, NY, RI, VT)

Unmi Abkin: Coco & The Cellar Bar | Easthampton, Mass.

Karen Akunowicz: Myers + Chang | Boston


Tyler Anderson: Millwright’s | Simsbury, Conn.

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Cara Chigazola-Tobin: Honey Road | Burlington, Vt.

Krista Kern Desjarlais: The Purple House | North Yarmouth, Maine

Vien Dobui: Cong Tu Bot | Portland, Maine

Tiffani Faison: Tiger Mama | Boston


Erin French: The Lost Kitchen | Freedom, Maine

Victor Parra Gonzalez: Las Puertas | Buffalo, N.Y.

Seizi Imura: Cafe Sushi | Cambridge

Brian Lewis: The Cottage | Westport, Conn.

Matt Louis: Moxy | Portsmouth, N.H.


Tony Messina: Uni | Boston

Ravin Nakjaroen: Long Grain | Camden, Maine

Cassie Piuma: Sarma | Somerville

Elizabeth Ronzetti and Adam Kopels: 18 Bay Restaurant | Shelter Island, N.Y.

Champe Speidel: Persimmon | Providence, R.I.

Keiko Suzuki Steinberger: Suzuki’s Sushi Bar | Rockland, Maine

Nick Suarez: Gaskins | Germantown, N.Y.

Benjamin Sukle: Oberlin | Providence

Best New Restaurant

Honey Road | Burlington, Vt.

Les Sablons | Cambridge

Outstanding Baker

Maura Kilpatrick: Sofra Bakery and Café | Cambridge

Alison Pray: Standard Baking Co. | Portland

Outstanding Bar Program

The Baldwin Bar | Woburn

Outstanding Chef

Joanne Chang: Flour | Boston

Sam Hayward: Fore Street | Portland

Johanne Killeen: Al Forno | Providence

Outstanding Pastry Chef

Renae Connolly: Benedetto | Cambridge

Ilma Lopez: Piccolo | Portland

Outstanding Restaurant

O Ya | Boston

Chase’s Daily | Belfast, Maine

Outstanding Restaurateur

Garrett Harker: (Eastern Standard Kitchen & Drinks | Island Creek Oyster Bar | Row 34 and others) | Boston

Ken Oringer: (Uni | Little Donkey | Toro and others) | Boston

Outstanding Service

Eastern Standard

The Back Bay Grill | Portland

Outstanding Wine Program

Grill 23 & Bar | Boston

Taberna de Haro | Brookline

Outstanding Wine, Beer, or Spirits Professional

Deirdre Heekin: La Garagista | Bethel, Vt.

JC Tetreault and Esther Tetreault: Trillium Brewing Co. | Boston

Rising Star Chef of the Year

Irene Li: Mei Mei | Boston

Juan Pedrosa: Yvonne’s | Boston

Cara Stadler: Tao Yuan | Brunswick, Maine

Devra First can be reached at Follow her on Twitter @devrafirst.