The James Beard Foundation revealed its annual line-up of top restaurants and chefs at the 2017 James Beard Foundation Awards held at Lyric Opera of Chicago on Mon., May 1, 2017. During a ceremony hosted by Emmy Award-nominated actor Jesse Tyler Ferguson, awards in the Restaurant and Chef and Restaurant Design categories were presented, as well as a number of special achievement awards.
Highlights from this year’s list of winners include:
- Best New Restaurant: Le Coucou, New York City.
- Outstanding Chef: Michael Solomonov, Zahav, Philadelphia.
- Outstanding Pastry Chef: Ghaya Oliveira, Daniel, New York City.
- Outstanding Restaurant: Topolobampo, Chicago.
- Outstanding Restaurateur: Stephen Starr, Starr Restaurants, Philadelphia.
- Rising Star Chef: Zachary Engel, Shaya, New Orleans.
Industry leaders from across the country attended the ceremony where the theme of the evening was “Powered by Food,” which celebrated the ways that technology has strengthened our connections through food, from the blog post that sparks a trend, to the Instagram posts that inspire us each day.
Established in 1990, the James Beard Awards recognize culinary professionals for excellence and achievement in their fields and furthers the Foundation’s mission to celebrate, nurture, and honor chefs and other leaders making America's food culture more delicious, diverse, and sustainable for everyone.
Each award category has an individual committee made up of industry professionals who volunteer their time to oversee the policies, procedures, and selection of judges for their respective Awards program.
All JBF Award winners receive a certificate and a medallion engraved with the James Beard Foundation Awards insignia. There are no cash prizes. The 2017 James Beard Foundation Awards were hosted by Choose Chicago and the Illinois Restaurant Association and presented in association with the Chicago Department of Aviation, HMSHost, Illinois Office of Tourism, and Mariano's, alongside other partners.
The full list of 2017 James Beard Foundation award winners is available on the JBF blog.