This morning, the James Beard Foundation announced its 2012 award finalists at the Venetian and the Palazzo Las Vegas, and Portland has much to celebrate: As per tradition these days, Portland took three of the five spots in the Best Chef, Northwest category.
Chris Israel (Gruner), Naomi Pomeroy (Beast), and Cathy Whims (Nostrana) will face-off against Seattle's Matt Dillon (Sitka & Spruce) and Jason Franey (Canlis) for the 2012 Best Chef, Northwest JBF Award. The nominations mark the second for both Israel and Pomeroy, and the fourth consecutive nomination for Whims. (Last year, Portland took home two awards: Andy Ricker won Best Chef, Northwest, while Gabe Rucker won the Rising Star of the Year.)
The awards will take place at a gala event on Monday, May 7 at Lincoln Center's Avery Fisher Hall. More coverage over at Eater National.
· Here Are the 2012 James Beard Awards Finalists [Eater National]