Otherwise, it was a shutout for Atlanta chefs and restaurants who were named Beard Award semifinalists in February.
Besides Lee and Taylor, who were also semifinalists in 2020, all the chefs in the category were first-time semifinalists, though Lazy Betty was a semifinalist in the Best New Restaurant category in 2020.
Among national awards, Ticonderoga Club was recognized as a semifinalist in the Outstanding Hospitality category. The restaurant was a finalist in the category in 2022 and was a finalist in 2019 in the Outstanding Bar Program category. Ticonderoga Club has been closed in its location at Krog Street Market since late December due to a burst pipe.
Also a repeat semifinalist was Midtown restaurant Lyla Lila in the Outstanding Wine and Other Beverages Program category.
In the Outstanding Bakery category, Buena Gente Cuban Bakery in Decatur and Unforgettable Bakery & Cafe in Savannah were both named semifinalists for the first time.
In addition, Clinton Gray, Derrick Moore, and Emanuel Reed, who own Nashville-based Slim & Husky’s Pizza Beeria, were named semifinalists in the Outstanding Restaurateur category. There are two Slim & Husky’s locations in Atlanta.
And The Grey in Savannah was up for the Outstanding Restaurant honor. Chef Mashama Bailey, who co-owns the restaurant with John Morisano, won the award for Outstanding Chef in 2022 and Best Chef: Southeast in 2019.
Established in 1990, the James Beard Awards are among the nation’s most prestigious honors recognizing leaders in the culinary and food media industries.
Award winners will be revealed June 5 at a ceremony at the Lyric Opera of Chicago.
Sign up for the AJC Food and Dining Newsletter
Read more stories like this by liking Atlanta Restaurant Scene on Facebook, following @ATLDiningNews on Twitter and @ajcdining on Instagram.