Here Are Philadelphia’s 2019 James Beard Awards Finalists

After a solid showing in the semifinalists round, here are the Philly chefs and restaurateurs still in the running for an award in 2019.

james beard awards nominees semifinalists philadelphia

James Beard Foundation

Back in February, when the James Beard Foundation released its long list of semifinalists for this year’s awards, Philly was looking pretty good. First, because we had a healthy crop of nominees (16 of them, actually, which is a solid showing). But also because some of the choices made by the judges were very interesting. Suraya getting a nod for pastry chef James Matty? That was cool. Andiario being up for Best New Restaurant? That was huge. And Monk’s finally getting a shot at the bigs with a nomination for Best Bar Program was a long-overdue surprise.

Today, though, the short list of finalists has been announced (chefs, restaurants, media, design — the whole deal). And while yes, of course you expect us to lose a few names in the culling, right now Philly has just six competitors headed for the big show. And while it’s always tough to see who didn’t make the final cut, here’s who’ll be headed for Chicago to represent Philly on May 6th.

Outstanding Chef

Marc Vetri, Vetri Cucina

Outstanding Restaurant


Outstanding Restaurateur

Ellen Yin, High Street Hospitality Group (Fork, High Street on Market, High Street on Hudson)

Rising Star Chef

Jessi Ito, Royal Izakaya

Best Chef, Mid-Atlantic

Cristina Martinez, South Philly Barbacoa

Rich Landau, Vedge