Making the cut in 2017 is second-year semifinalist Steven McHugh of Cured at the Pearl for Best Chef Southwest. McHugh opened Cured in 2013 with serious charcuterie boards and playful takes on South Texas flavors using hyper local ingredients. Other Texas semifinalists include Bryce Gilmore (Barley Swine, Austin), Omar Flores (Casa Rubia, Dallas), Manabu Horiuchi (Kata Robata, Houston), Anita Jaisinghani (Pondicheri, Houston), Teiichi Sakurai (Tei-An Soba House, Dallas), Hugo Ortega (Hugo’s, Houston), John Tesar (Knife, Dallas), David Uygur (Lucia, Dallas), Jianyun Ye (Mala Sichuan Bistro, Houston), Seth Siegel-Gardner and Terrence Gallivan (The Pass, Houston).
The Esquire Tavern comes in as the second semifinalist from San Antonio with for Outstanding Bar Program. This is the second semifinalist nod for the bar. The first was in 2012 while under the direction of Jeret Peña. The Esquire joins Houston's Anvil Bar & Refuge as the only other semifinalist from Texas.
Finalists will be announced March 15, and winners will be announced May 1 in Chicago during the 2017 James Beard Awards Gala, often billed as the Oscars of food.
The James Beard Foundation announced a list of semifinalists for the 2017 Restaurant and Chef Awards. The list, compiled through various submissions and nominations includes two San Antonio nods.