For those of you who are uninitiated, the James Beard Foundation Awards are the Oscars of the Food World. If you're a Chef, no higher accolade can come your way than a JBF Award. Being able to hang that Gold Medal in your establishment means a lot. It always makes me proud to see the number of names and restuarants that come out of Oregon.
Personally and albeit a bit biased, the food scene in the Pacific Northwest is amazing. It's taken a while to break through the Left Coast Bias & California to the south - but people are standing up and taking notice and have for a couple of years now. If you watch any of the Cooking Channel, Portland shows up on all kinds of shows like Eat St., Unique Eats & Unique Sweets - and that's just the tip of the iceberg. Several top playes in the Food Media scene in PDX show up on those shows as well - most notably Mike Thelin the co-founder of Feast Portland.
You can download the entire Semifinalists here: James Beard Foundation Awards.
But I just want to take a look at all the Oregon Semifinalists.