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The "Oscars" of the Restaurant Industry Nominates 18 Colorado Semifinalists

The James Beard Awards, considered the “Oscars” of the restaurant industry, just nominated 18 Colorado semifinalists on Wednesday. Colorado foodies, place your bets! The state’s street cred in the restaurant industry is only gaining ground, and with so many nominees in the game, our colorful mountain state is bound to come out on top. Check out the full list of semifinalists here.


Best Chef Semifinalist: Caroline Glover, Chef & Owner of Annette


This year, the James Beard Awards has created a new category: the Best Chef Mountain region. The new category nominates 20 chefs from the mountain region, which includes Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Utah, and Wyoming, and half of the nominees are from Colorado! Those are some great odds!


Sushi Den, Outstanding Restaurant Semifinalist


Colorado Restaurant Nominees:

Local restaurants and chefs were also nominated in these categories:

Outstanding Restaurant: Frasca Food & Wine of Bouder and Sushi Den in Platt Park

Best New Restaurant: Sunday Vinyl Wine Bar at Denver's Union Station, from the owners of Frasca Food & Wine

Outstanding Restauranteur: Jen Jasinski and Beth Gruitch for Crafted Concepts, which operates five Denver restaurants: Rioja, Bistro Vendome, Stoic & Genuine, Ultreia, and Euclid Hall Bar & Kitchen

Rising Star Chef of the Year: Austin Nickel, chef de cuisine at Sputino

Outstanding Bar Program: Williams & Graham speakeasy in the Lower Highlands

Outstanding Wine Program: Element 47 at the Little Nell in Aspen

Outstanding Wine, Spirits, or Beer Producer: Todd & Scott Leopold of the Leopold Bros. distillery in Denver


Best Chef Mountain nominees from Colorado:

Carrie Baird, executive chef of Bar Dough, who has recently left to launch Rose’s Classic Americana in Boulder (grand opening this spring!)

Caroline Glover, chef & owner of modern American restaurant, Annette in Stanley Marketplace

Cindhura Reddy, chef & owner of Sputino

Dana Rodriguez, executive chef & co-owner of Pan-Latin dim-sum restaurant, Super Mega Bien in RiNo

Josh Niernberg, executive chef & owner of new-American Bin 707 Foodbar in Grand Junction

Tommy Lee, chef & owner of Chinese restaurant Hop Alley in RiNo

Duncan Holmes, executive chef or multi-course restaurant Beckon in RiNo

Kelly Whitaker, chef & owner of Italian-Asian fusion The Wolf’s Tailor in Sunnyside

Brother Luck, chef & owner of Four by Brother Luck in Colorado Springs

Luis Young, chef de cuisine at The Penrose Room at The Broadmoor in Colorado Springs



Photo:The Wolf's Tailor


Finalists will be determined through a voting process during which prior winners of James Beard Awards will cast a vote. From the pool of finalists, winners will be selected and announced in May 2020. We will be keeping an eye on the process as well, so give us a follow on Facebook or Instagram to stay up-to-date! Fingers crossed for our Colorado semi-finalists!


#ColoradoFoodie #ColoradoRestaurants #DenverEats #DenverRestaurants #ColoradoChefs #JamesBeardAwards #ArtOfHomeTeam

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