James Beard Nominees in Our Back Yard

The 2022 James Beard Award nominees list was announced and we have two nominees here in Winston-Salem and

Stephanie Tyson (©J. Sinclair/WSJournal)

one in our neighboring Greensboro, as well as several others from around our state.

First, MY people! Both are nominated for Best Chef in the Southeast.

Congratulations to Stephanie Tyson from Sweet Potatoes (…Well Shut My Mouth) a Restaurant. She is a mighty fine chef. I don’t know of anything I’ve ever had of hers that I didn’t love. I have purchased one of her cookbooks, now I need to definitely get it signed. Smothered Yardbird and Spaghetti with a Drawl come to mind, immediately.

Peyton Smith (©Peyton Smith)

Congratulations to Peyton Smith from Mission Pizza Napoletana. Already voted one of the Top 100 pizza concepts in the country, Peyton takes his pizzaiolo skills to new heights all the time. His pies are unique and delicious. Sometimes it’s hard to get both of those qualities at the same time. But, it’s not just pizza, his meatballs and tomato sauce are some of the best around.

Now, the ones from outside of WSNC.

Tal Blevins brought the inspiration from his culinary travels to his hometown of Greensboro. What that gets us, my fellow eaters is Machete, which is the brick-and-mortar version of their newly famous supper club events they had been doing since 2018. I have to be honest, I haven’t eaten here, yet. I don’t get to GSO as much as I would like. But, hey, as an owner of what has been called a “glorious beard” (not James, but you know…), Tal rocks a magnificent beard, as well, so I definitely need to get over there. But, Machete is nominated for Best New Restaurant. Fingers crossed for them!

Tal Blevins (©Tal Blevins)

Chai Pani of Asheville is nominated for Outstanding Restaurant.

Cleophus Hethington from Benne on Eagle in Asheville is nominated for Emerging Chef.

Nani’s Piri Piri Chicken in Asheville is also nominated for Best New Restaurant.

Susannah Gebhart of Old World Levain (OWL) Bakery in Asheville is nominated for Outstanding Baker.

Cúrate in Asheville is nominated (of course) for Outstanding Hospitality.

Alley Twenty Six in Durham is nominated for Outstanding Bar Program.

Katie Button from Cúrate, Greg Collier from Leah & Louise in Charlotte, Oscar Diaz from The Cortez in Raleigh, Sunny Gerhart from St. Roch Fine Oysters + Bar in Raleigh, Ricky Moore from SALTBOX Seafood Joint in Durham, Aaron Vandemark from Panciuto in Hillsborough, and Cheetie Kumar from Garland in Raleigh, are all nominated, along with Stephanie and Peyton for Best Chef: Southeast (GA, KY, NC, SC, TN, WV).

Congratulations to all of the nominees and good luck to them all! I feel lucky to have so many awesome chefs and establishments within reach of my foodie heart.

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