The James Beard Foundation Announces the 2015 Chef and Restaurant Award Semifinalists

Look for 20 local names on the list.

Chef Fabio Trabocchi gets two JBF nods: Outstanding Chef, and Best New Restaurant for Fiola Mare (above). Photograph by Scott Suchman

The James Beard Foundation has announced its semifinalists for the 2015 Restaurant and Chef Award categories. The ultimate win is one of the most prestigious accolades in the industry, but even being ranked among the contenders is considered a big honor. This year, 20 local names are among the semifinalists, including Fiola Mare in the Best New Restaurant category, Cedric Maupillier (Mintwood Place) for Best Chef Mid-Atlantic, and Ashok Bajaj for Outstanding Restaurateur.

The final nominees will be announced on March 24, and the winners picked in at a ceremony in New York in May. See the full list below.

Best New Restaurant

Fiola Mare

Outstanding Baker

Mark Furstenberg, Bread Furst

Outstanding Bar Program


Outstanding Wine Program

Charleston (Baltimore)

Outstanding Chef

Johnny Monis, Komi

Fabio Trabocchi (Fiola, Fiola Mare, Casa Luca)

Outstanding Restaurant



Outstanding Restaurateur

Ashok Bajaj, the Knightsbridge Restaurant Group

Outstanding Service



Outstanding Beverage Professional

Derek Brown

Rising Star of the Year

Erik Bruner-Yang, Toki Underground

Marjorie Meek-Bradley, Ripple

Best Chef Mid-Atlantic

Anthony Chittum, Iron Gate

Cedric Maupillier, Mintwood Place

Tarver King, The Restaurant at Patowmack Farm (Lovettsville, VA)

Spike Gjerde, Woodberry Kitchen (Baltimore)

Cindy Wolf, Charleston (Baltimore)

Best Pastry Chef Mid-Atlantic

Caitlin Dysart, 2941

Food Editor

Anna Spiegel covers the dining and drinking scene in her native DC. Prior to joining Washingtonian in 2010, she attended the French Culinary Institute and Columbia University’s MFA program in New York, and held various cooking and writing positions in NYC and in St. John, US Virgin Islands.