Austin surprisingly came up empty handed at the James Beard Awards Monday night in Chicago. The capital city was the proud home of three of the five finalists for the category of Best Chef Southwest, but none of the Austin chefs took home the medal handed out by sometime Austinite Zoeey Deschanel.
Charleen Badman of FnB in Scottsdale, Arizona won the award, leaving seven-time finalist Bryce Gilmore, two-time finalist Michael Fojtasek of Olamaie and Kevin Fink of Emmer & Rye to make the trip back to Austin empty handed.
Previous Austin winners include Aaron Franklin of Franklin Barbecue in 2015, Paul Qui in 2012 and Austin’s first-ever winner, Tyson Cole of Uchi, in 2011.
2018 Austin360 Dining Guide: Top 50 restaurants in Austin
2018 Dining Guide James Beard finalists: Emmer & Rye (#1) | Olamaie (#4) | Barley Swine (#5)