Rhode Island

New England Chefs and Restaurateurs Named 2017 James Beard Award Finalists

Finalists for the 2017 James Beard Awards have been announced, and they include several New Englanders.

Known as the Oscars of the food world, the annual awards are presented for excellence in cuisine, culinary writing and culinary education in the United States. Highlighted below are the local nominees:

Outstanding Pastry Chef

Maura Kilpatrick of Oleana in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

Outstanding Restaurateur

Ken Oringer of Uni, Toro, Coppa, and others in Boston, Massachusetts.

Outstanding Wine, Spirits, or Beer Professional

Rob Tod of Allagash Brewing Company in Portland, Maine.

Best Chef: Northeast

Karen Akunowicz of Myers + Chang in Boston, Massachusetts.

Cassie Piuma of Sarma in Somerville, Massachusetts.

Susan Regis of Shepard in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

Benjamin Sukle of Birch in Providence, Rhode Island.

Andrew Taylor and Mike Wile of Eventide Oyster Co. in Portland, Maine.

The James Beard Foundation also announced the 2017 recipients of the Who's Who of Food and Beverage in America award, featuring two New Englanders:

Roger Berkowitz, president and CEO of Legal Sea Foods in Boston, Massachusetts.

Michel Nischan, founder, president and CEO of Wholesome Wave in Bridgeport, Connecticut.

The James Beard Awards ceremony will be held at the Lyric Opera of Chicago on May 1.

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