Photos: 2018 James Beard Awards Announced in Philly, Plus Chef Eli Kulp Attends

The finalists in the 2018 James Beard Awards sometimes called the Oscars of the food world were announced Wednesday morning at Stephen Starr’s Parc restaurant on Rittenhouse Square.

Stephen Starr was named the James Beard Foundation’s best restaurateur in America last year.

Meryl Levitz, president and CEO of Visit Philadelphia greets guests at the early morning event.  Philadelphia is on fire, we’re Super Bowl Champions, and a delicious food scene. “We’re a City of neighborhoods, immigrants and traditions, with affordable rents, a rich 100 mile food shed for ingredients and a remarkable spirit of brotherhood, and sisterhood within out kitchens. Everyone in this room has a story about any one of those things.”

Clare Reichenbach, chief executive officer of the James Beard Foundation, who recently stepped into this dream job position. “It’s a profoundly exciting time for the Foundation,” Reichenbach tells Eater. “The very powerful marriage of purpose and pleasure, which is unique to the Foundation, is something I’m going to be focusing on and working with the team on how we can deepen and amplify the impact across both those areas.”

Local chefs received 14 nominations across seven categories as semifinalist in February, and the event held yesterday was held to narrow down the field, not only here in Philly but for others culinary professional around the country.

David Whitaker, President & CEO Choose Chicago

Let’s see who will be heading to Chicago for the May 7 James Beard Award Ceremony.

David Whitaker, Choose Chicago, Ellen Yin (Outstanding Restauranteur), Clare Reichenbach, James Beard, Michael Solomonov (Outstanding Service Zahav) and Rising Star Chef of the Year
Camille Cogswell, Zahav

Richard Landau, of Vedge nominated for best chef, mid-Atlantic region. This is the moment right after his nomination was announced.

Congrats to everyone. Here are additional photos from the day.

Chef Jean-Marie Lacroix – Brûlée Catering and Clare Reichenbach, Executive Director James Beard

Anne Quatrano, James Beard Foundation Committee Chair

Nicole Cashman, Cashman & Assocs, welcomes Chef Michael Solomonov, Zahav “Solo 2” followed by his dad “Solo 1”
Chef Eli Kulp, and Mitchell Davis, James Beard Foundation

The moment Chef Michael Solomonov finds out his restaurant Zahav was nominated for Outstanding Service. He’s hugging Zahav’s GM Okan Yazici,

Solo congratulating Rich Landau of Vedge for best chef: mid-Atlantic as “Rising Star Chef of the Year Camille Cogswell, Zahav” looks on
Stephen Starr congratulation Ellen Yin on her nomination
The full list of finalists across the country is here.
 Check out the Phila Business Journal and Metro Philly for an in depth article and additional photos.