Nominees have been announced for the fourth annual Johnson & Wales University's Zest Awards which celebrate excellence in South Florida's culinary arts scene.
Last year, Sugarcane Raw Bar Grill's Timon Balloo was the big winner, taking home the culinary innovator award and accepting an award for Bocce Bar, which was named newcomer of the year.
On March 18, from 7 to 9 p.m., JWU's Wildcat Center at its North Miami campus will host the awards ceremony which showcases leaders in the Miami food scene. Awards are presented in seven categories including best restaurant, best boutique restaurant, best bar/lounge, best wine program, culinary innovator, newcomer of the year, baking and pastry chef of the year, best food blogger, and best food reporting. In addition, Michelle Bernstein will receive a special community leader award, for her work with Common Threads.
The Zest Awards' best food blogger and best reporting awards are chosen by vote, with people encouraged to vote for their favorite food coverage at jwu.edu/zest. You can vote only once (unlike other Florida elections), so make it count and vote for New Times/Short Order, which is nominated for a Zest in the best reporting category.
You can tweet about the Zests using @JWUNorthMiami, hashtag #JWUZest.
Here's the full rundown of the nominees:
- Area 31
- Bourbon Steak at Turnberry Isle Resort
- Edge Steak & Bar
- Makoto Bal Harbour
- Palme d'Or at the Biltmore Hotel
- Sugarcane Raw Bar Grill
Best Boutique Restaurant
- Blackbrick Chinese
- Bread & Butter
- Drunken Dragon
- The Federal
- Hiro's Yako-San
- MC Kitchen
- Sakaya Kitchen
- Blackbird Ordinary
- Broken Shaker at Freehand Miami
- db Bistro Miami
- Khong River House
- St. Regis Bar at the St. Regis Bal Harbour
Best Wine Program
- The Biltmore
- The Dutch at W South Beach
- The Setai
- St. Regis
- Tim Andriola, Timo and Basil Park
- John Kunkel, 50 Eggs
- Michael Schwartz, The Genuine Hospitality Group
- Jose Mendin, Pubbelly Group
- Danny Serfer, Blue Collar and Mignonette
Newcomer of the Year
- Basil Park
- Touche at E11even
Baking & Pastry Chef of the Year
- Antonio Bachour, St. Regis Bal Harbour
- Jerome Maure, db Bistro Miami
- Jason Morale, Sugarcane Raw Bar Grill and Bocce Ristorante
- Zak Stern, Zak the Baker
- Keith Wallace, Four Seasons Miami
Best Food Blogger (Reader's Choice)
- Adventures of the Foodaholic
- Burger Beast
- Food for Thought
- Miami Dish
- Miami Food Pug
- The Hungry Post
- South Florida Food and Wine
Best Food Reporting - Traditional Media (Readers' Choice)
- Eater Miami
- Edible South Florida
- The Miami Herald
- MIAMI Modern Luxury Magazine
- Ocean Drive Magazine
- Short Order (Miami New Times)
- South Florida Gourmet
Michelle Bernstein, Founder of the Miami Chapter of Common Threads, chef-owner of Crumb on Parchment and chef of Seagrape
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