The semi-finalists for the 2012 James Beard Foundation Awards (JBF) have been announced. The annual awards, which will take place in New York on May the 7th, focus on highlighting American cuisine and are seen by many as the 'Oscars of the food world'.
The awards focus on the whole spectrum of American food with categories such as: best new restaurant, outstanding restaurateur, outstanding chef and even awards for rising stars, outstanding service and best restaurant design.
In more recent years JBF has launched Media Awards, focusing on food journalists, writers and publications and with the announcement of this year's semi-finalists the excitement of finding out who will make the finals has started.
The awards - supported by S.Pellegrino and Acqua Panna - were established by JBF in 1990 through the merging of two pre-existing ceremonies: The R.T French Tastemaker Cookbook Awards and the Cook’s Magazine and Restaurant Business’s Who's Who of Food and Beverage in America. It now takes place annually and is celebrated at the Avery Fisher Hall in New York.
A round-up of the 2011 winners here.