- Niki Nakayama, n/naka, Los Angeles, CA: For over a decade, Niki Nakayama has been reimagining traditional kaiseki cuisine through a California lens.
Best New Restaurant
- Causa, Washington DC: Chef Carlos Delgado’s tasting menu tours through Peruvian coastal, Andean, and Amazonian cuisine.
- Lupi & Iris, Milwaukee, WI: Mediterranean-inspired, rooted in Milwaukee. Here, chef Adam Siegel provides an escape to French and Italian Rivieras.
- Tatemó, Houston, TX: Translating to roast, toast, or grill, Tatemó revolves its menu on the integrity of heirloom nixtamalized corn.
- Ellen Yin, High Street Hospitality Group (High Street and others), Philadelphia, PA: Ellen Yin has over 25 years of experience as an owner/operator of multiple restaurants in Philadelphia, including Fork, High Street Philly, a.kitchen & bar, and High Street Hoagie.
- Charlie Mitchell, Clover Hill, NYC: Located on a leafy, cobblestone block in the heart of the Brooklyn Heights sits Clover Hill, an intimate, 26-seat restaurant helmed by Clay Castillo, Gabriel Merino, and Michelin-starred chef Charlie Mitchell.
- Sergine Mbaye, Dakar NOLA, LA: Redefining Senegalese cuisine, Sergine Mbaye blends traditional West African and Louisiana ingredients.
- Amanda Shulman, Her Place Supper Club, Philadelphia, PA: Keeping it fresh week to week, Amanda Shulman’s dinner party selections have ranged from pork and duck terrine to French onion soup lasagnetta blanketed with shaved truffles.
Outstanding Pastry Chef or Baker
- Margarita Manzke, République, Los Angeles, CA: This French-inspired bakery, café, bar, and formal dining room is set in a historic 1928 space.
Outstanding Wine and Beverage
- Lazy Bear, San Francisco, CA: What was once an underground restaurant is now one of SF’s most essential (and most booked) pop-ups. Try a taste of American cuisine rooted in the nostalgic flavors of the 20th century.
- OTOTO, Los Angeles, CA: Breaking up its sake selections by flavor profiles that include “fruity and floral” to “delicious weirdos”, this LA sake bar balances its booze with chicken katsu sandos and crispy tofu for the snacking.
- Spencer, Ann Arbor, MI: This quaint wine and cheese bar sustains with seasonal small plates and charcuterie boards
Best Chef (by region)
Best Chef: California
- Gilberto Cetina Jr., Holbox, Los Angeles, CA: Named after a tropical island in the Yucatan Peninsula, this walk-up seafood stall journeys through Mexican coastal cuisine.
- Kyle and Katina Connaughton, SingleThread, Healdsburg, CA: Sourcing vegetables, fruit, herbs, flowers, olive oil, and more from their 24 acre farm, this dining destination embodies the meaning of farm-to-table.
- Brandon Hayato Go, Hayato, Los Angeles, CA: This intimate, seven seat Japanese kaiseki restaurant hones in on technique and seasonal ingredients.
Best Chef: Mid-Atlantic
- Dionicio Jiménez, Cantina La Martina, Philadelphia, PA: From Mexico City to California to Philly, chef Dionicio Jiménez shares his family’s traditions via chilaquiles, tamales, and tortas.
- Michael Rafidi, Albi, Washington DC: Translating to my heart in Arabic, Albi explores chef Michael Rafidi’s Palestinian roots with a fine dining edge. Nightly manning the coal-fired hearth, you can find chef Rafidi smoking and searing kibbeh, kebabs, and keftas.
Best Chef: Midwest
- Gregory León, Amilinda, Milwaukee, WI: At Amilinda, chef Gregory León takes guests on a journey throughout the Iberian Peninsula with marinated sardines and Portugese flaming sausages.
- David Utterback, Yoshitomo, Omaha, NE: This neighborhood sushi spot focuses on a mix of traditional sushi fare, modern reinterpretations, and small shareable plates.
Best Chef: Mountain
- Michael Diaz De Leon, BRUTØ, Denver: The heart of BRUTØ lies with its hearth. Pull up a chair at this 16-seater counter for an omakase-style tasting menu inspired by Latin and global cuisines.
Best Chef: New York State
- Junghyun Park, Atomix, NYC: Stemming from the ancient Korean word for gift, Atomix continues to push the boundaries of modern Korean cooking.
Best Chef: Northwest and Pacific
- Joshua Dorcak, MÄS, Ashland, OR: Chef Joshua Dorcak follows the seasons for his Cascadian cuisine.
- Vince Nguyen, Berlu, Portland, OR: Cutting his teeth in award-winning restaurants across the globe, chef Vince Nguyen tells his story through a coursed Vietnamese tasting menu.
- Aaron Verzosa, Archipelago, Seattle, WA: Husband-and-wife team Aaron Verzosa and Amber Manuguid weave progressive Filipino-American flavors with Pacific Northwest ingredients.
Best Chef: Southeast
- Josh Habiger, Bastion, Nashville, TN: Grab a seat at this small, 24-seater restaurant for a seasonal six-course tasting.
- Sam Hart, Counter-, Charlotte, NC: Chef Sam Hart and the Counter- team combine art, music, storytelling, and high-level international cuisine.
Best Chef: South
- Henry Moso, Kabooki Sushi, Orlando, FL: Chef Henry Moso’s omakase showcases contemporary Japanese cuisine.
Check out the full list of nominees here.