The New York-based James Beard Foundation has announced the semifinalists for the 2015 James Beard Awards for restaurants and chefs, with six food and beverage professionals from Dallas making the list.
Stephan Pyles was nominated for Outstanding Chef. And San Salvaje, his Latin restaurant, was nominated for Best New Restaurant.
Four Dallas chefs were nominated for Best Chef Southwest: Omar Flores (Casa Rubia), Matt McCallister (FT33), John Tesar (Knife) and David Uygur (Lucia).
James Tidwell from the Four Seasons in Las Colinas was nominated for Outstanding Wine, Beer or Spirits Professional; he's also a repeat nominee.
Most of these Dallas nominees appeared on the 2014 list, including McCallister, Tesar and Uygur. Nominations are made by a Texas committee that includes critics such as D Magazine's Nancy Nichols and Texas Monthly's Pat Sharpe. Dallas chefs have frequently made it to the semifinalist stage but rarely to the finalist round.
Six chefs from Austin made the list, including Aaron Franklin of Franklin Barbecue for Best Chef Southwest, really? And four chefs from Houston were nominated, including repeat Justin Yu (Oxheart), who was a Rising Star nominee in 2013.
These semifinalist nominees will be narrowed down to a shorter list of finalists next month. James Beard is a nonprofit organization named in honor of culinarian James Beard.