Ashley Christensen, Scott Crawford Semifinalists for 2011 James Beard Best Chef Southeast

February, 20, 2011, by David

Ashley Christensen, Scott Crawford Semifinalists for 2011 James Beard Best Chef Southeast
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It has only been a year since we congratulated Poole's Chef and owner Ashley Christensen for her 2010 James Beard nomination.  The prestigious James Beard award represents one of the highest awards a chef can receive.  For 20 years the James Beard Foundation has celebrated american cuisine and identified the contributions of individual chefs to that american identity. 

This year Christensen has once again been nominated for best chef in the Southeast.  She is in good company- the Triangle represented an outsized portion of the short list with The Lantern's  Andrea Reusing, Herons at the Umstead's Scott Crawford and several others also nominated.  It wasn't always this way though, these young chefs have only begun to define something truly local in recent years.  In the end it is obvious that the nebulous rotation of Triangle culinary talent is raising the bar and our prominence with it.  That creative class the local economists are always talking about?  Some of its most potent contributors are the chefs and restauranteurs.

The nail biting aspect of the whole thing is that they release this list of nominees so early- and in the end only a select few will actually get the award.  You know who we will be rooting for. 

Triangle chefs listed only.

2011 James Beard Award Nomminees Best Chef South East

Ashley Christensen, Poole's, Raleigh, NC
Scott Crawford, Herons at the Umstead Hotel and Spa, Cary, NC
Scott Howell, Nana's, Durham, NC
Shane Ingram, Four Square, Durham, NC
Andrea Reusing, Lantern, Chapel Hill, NC
Chip Smith, Bonne Soirée, Chapel Hill, NC
Aaron Vandemark, Panciuto, Hillsborough, NC


Outstanding Chef

Ben Barker, Magnolia Grill, Durham, NC

Outstanding Restaurant

Magnolia Grill, Durham, NC

Update @ 8pm to reflect other categories.

See the Poole’s Downtown Diner {categories show="257|236|256|96" show_group="9" limit="1"}{category_name}{/categories} page.
See the Herons at the Umstead Hotel And Spa {categories show="257|236|256|96" show_group="9" limit="1"}{category_name}{/categories} page.

Read More

Restaurants, Other posts by David.


Ashley ChristensenPooles DinerDurhamAndrea ReusingHerons Restaurant At The Umsted Hotel and SpaJames Beard AwardsScott CrawfordThe LanternChefsHeron's


  • jt
    02/20 07:48 PM

    What about the Barker’s?  They were nominated for best overall…

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