After nominating dozens of restaurants and chefs back in February, the James Beard Foundation announced the winners of its 29th annual James Beard Awards on Monday, May 6. While establishments across the United States (as well as plenty of bakers, bartenders, and chefs) were recognized in 21 different categories, we’re most excited about the winner of the prestigious Best New Restaurant award: Frenchette in New York City.
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Riad Nasr and Lee Hanson opend the nouveau French bistro in Tribeca in April 2018 after working together at other New York landmarks like Balthazar, Pastis, Schiller’s Liquor Bar, and Minetta Tavern over the years. You’ll find quintessentially French items on the menu like côte de boeuf and duck frites, but also a zesty artichoke tagine and an impressive wine list that focuses on natural, organic, and biodynamic offerings.
Frenchette won the top spot over such big names as the revamped Surf Club, an iconic oceanfront resort in Miami run by Thomas Keller, of the French Laundry. In Los Angeles, David Chang’s West Coast debut Majordomo was also nominated but didn’t make the final cut.
To qualify, each of the 30 nominees had to open in 2018, demonstrate excellence in both cuisine and hospitality, and make a significant impact on the dining scenes in their respective cities.
Even though these other restuarants didn’t win, we still suggest using this list as a guide to the most exciting places to eat right now in the United States—especially if you can’t get into Frenchette right away.
James Beard Award 2019 Best New Restaurant Semifinalists
- Adda Indian Canteen, NYC
- Andiario, West Chester, PA
- Angler, San Francisco, CA
- Atomix, NYC
- Bardea Food & Drink, Wilmington, DE
- Bavel, Los Angeles, CA
- Bywater American Bistro, New Orleans, LA
- Canard, Portland, OR
- Celeste, Somerville, MA
- Chickadee, Boston, MA
- Ellē, Washington, D.C.
- The Elysian Bar, New Orleans, LA
- Folk, Nashville, TN
- Frenchette, NYC
- Kyoten, Chicago, IL
- Larder Delicatessen and Bakery, Cleveland, OH
- Lineage, Wailea, HI
- Majordomo, Los Angeles, CA
- Marrow, Detroit, MI
- Nyum Bai, Oakland, CA
- Passerotto, Chicago, IL
- Petra and the Beast, Dallas, TX
- Popol Vuh, Minneapolis, MN
- Q House, Denver, CO
- Sawyer, Seattle, WA
- Spoken English, Washington, D.C.
- The Stanley, Charlotte, NC
- Suerte, Austin, TX
- The Surf Club Restaurant, Surfside, FL
- Vianda, San Juan, PR
This article originally appeared online in February 2019; it was updated on May 7, 2019, to include the 2019 winner of the James Beard Award Best New Restaurant.
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