This morning, the James Beard Foundation unveiled its 2011 semifinalists for the James Beard Awards, a nod to restaurateurs, chefs and pastry chefs, wine and spirits leaders, and service professionals that are often referred to as the "Oscars of the food world."
The preliminary list is quite lengthy, but notable contenders include two Josés (Andrés and Garces — can you tell them apart?), Michael Symon, and Suzanne Goin for outstanding chef. In the best new restaurant category, Stephanie Izard's new eatery, Girl & the Goat, and Jean-Georges Vongerichten's ABC Kitchen in Manhattan have both received accolades.
The semifinalist announcement is the first round before each of the 19 restaurant and chef categories is cut down to its final five nominees on March 21. The actual accolades will be announced at an awards gala on May 9 in New York's Lincoln Center. Check out the preliminary list. Who do you think is poised to win this year?