For the second year in a row, Chicago chefs and restaurants did not capture as many James Beard Awards as they had hoped. One of the night’s biggest awards - Outstanding Restaurant in the Country - went to Daniel Boulud, for his namesake restaurant, Daniel; Chicago’s Spiaggia was one of the co-nominees. Mindy Segal appeared to be a favorite for Outstanding Pastry Chef in the Country for her work at Hot Chocolate in Bucktown, but the award went instead to Nicole Plue of Redd in Yountville, California. Richard Melman had been nominated yet again for Outstanding Restaurateur, but the award went to the prolific Keith McNally of New York City.
Chicago’s Koren Grieveson did manage to take home the Best Chef: Great Lakes award, for her work at Avec, while Alinea picked up the Best Service award. The “America’s Classics” awards - announced several weeks ago - included Calumet Fisheries, a 62-year old fish shack near the 95th St. bridge in Calumet.