Food & dining
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    And the James Beard award nominees for 2018 are . . .

    Maura Kilpatrick of Sofra is nominated for the Outstanding Baker award.
    Kayana Szymczak for The Boston Globe/file
    Maura Kilpatrick of Sofra is nominated for the Outstanding Baker award.

    Today the James Beard Foundation announced the nominees for its 2018 awards, which recognize excellence in the culinary world. (Semifinalists were announced last month.)

    The nominees in the regional category of Best Chef: Northeast are Karen Akunowicz of Myers + Chang, Tiffani Faison of Tiger Mama, Tony Messina of Uni, Cassie Piuma of Sarma, and Benjamin Sukle of Oberlin in Providence.

    Two Boston-area names are in the mix for national awards. Ken Oringer (Uni, Little Donkey, Toro, and others) is nominated in the Outstanding Restaurateur category. And up for the Outstanding Baker award is Maura Kilpatrick of Sofra in Cambridge. (Another regional baker, Alison Pray of Standard Baking Co. in Portland, Maine, is also nominated.)


    Jody Adams, chef-owner of Trade, Porto, and Saloniki, is a Who’s Who of Food & Beverage in America inductee.

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    Winners will be announced and awards given on May 7.

    The foundation also announced the nominees for its book awards. Several cookbooks by regional authors are recognized: in the American category, Townsman chef Matt Jennings’s “Homegrown: Cooking From My New England Roots” and Freedom, Maine, chef Erin French’s “The Lost Kitchen,” and in the General category, Christopher Kimball’s “Christopher Kimball’s Milk Street: The New Home Cooking.” Those winners will be announced April 27.

    Find the complete list of nominees here


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