Bearded In The Bay: Locals Snag Four James Beard Awards

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The venerable James Beard Foundation Awards, otherwise known as the Oscars of the food world, happened last night in New York and the Bay Area made a very strong showing this year with four locals taking home top honors. Here's the skinny:

  • Craig Stoll, chef and co-owner of Italian favorite Delfina, snagged the award for Best Chef, Pacific Region, beating out three other Bay Area chefs: Douglas Keane of Cyrus (Healdsburg), David Kinch of Manresa (Los Gatos), and Michael Tusk of Quince (S.F.)

  • St. Helena's own Terra (sister to S.F.'s excellent Ame in the St. Regis Hotel) -- both owned by chef Hiro Some and wife Lissa Doumani -- won honors for Outstanding Service Nationwide. Who says Bay Area restaurant service sucks?

  • In the Outstanding Pastry Chef category, a pair of Bay Area chefs took home top honors: Elisabeth Prueitt and Chad Robertson of the perennially crowded Tartine Bakery in the Mission's 18th Street gastro corridor. If you don't believe it, just try their vanilla custard-filled chocolate eclair and/or the incredible bread pudding with housemade brioche, caramel, and fresh fruit.

  • Fritz Maytag of Anchor Brewing Company took home a Lifetime Achievement Award for his pioneering work in the American microbrew industry. Now if only there was a Lifetime Achievement Award for drinking Anchor Steam ...

    -- Brian Bernbaum

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