Bruce Auden finalist in the James Beard awards, and Guy Fieri's ventures in SA to air (possibly)

Bruce Auden, renowned chef at Biga on the Banks and Auden’s Kitchen, is a finalist for best chef in the Southwest in the James Beard Restaurant and Chef Awards. The James Beard awards are the end-all, be-all awards for the culinary industry, and this is Auden’s sixth year to be nominated. For chefs, each region has only five nominees, so to be nominated in and of itself is an honor.

Even if Auden doesn’t take the crown (or maybe they bestow an actual beard), Texas has a good shot at winning this year. Bryan Caswell at Reef in Houston and Tyson Cole at Uchi in Austin are also nominees.

Winners will be announced May 9. If Auden wins, let’s all go eat some fried chicken at Auden’s Kitchen.

Also, remember when Guy Fieri came to town and the comment line went wild with taco debate? Well, he visited a handful of local restaurants for future episodes of Diners, Drive-ins and Dives. One of the episodes, called “Porktastic,” will air on April 11 and showcase restaurants across the country with pork dishes. Here’s hoping Mary Ann’s Pig Stand ended up in the mix (who’s motto is, strangely, “Keeping the pig alive”). Perhaps we’ll see similar discussion on pulled pork in our near future.

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