James Beard Comes Calling in Miami

We’ve been touting the Magic City’s culinary scene for quite some time now, raving about the talents of everyone from Bernstein in MiMo, Schwartz and Eismann in the Design District, Chefetz who reigns supreme in South of Fifth, the Chows on South Beach, and many others. On Thursday, the good folks over at the James Beard Award Foundation indicated that they are salivating over our chefs just as much and named many of them as semifinalists for their coveted honor in 2010. Here is the list of our local celebrichefs:

Outstanding Restaurateur

  • Myles Chefetz: Myles Restaurant Group (Prime One Twelve, Prime Italian, Nemo, Shoji Sushi, Big Pink)

Rising Star Chef of the Year

  • Sam Gorenstein: BLT Steak at the Betsy

Best New Restaurant

Outstanding Pastry Chef

  • Hedy Goldsmith: Michael’s Genuine Food & Drink

Best Chef in the South

  • Zach Bell: Café Boulud at the Brazilian Court in Palm Beach
  • Dean James Max: 3030 Ocean at the Marriott Harbor Beach
  • Philippe Ruiz: Palme d’Or at the Biltmore
  • Michael Schwartz: Michael’s Genuine Food & Drink
  • Kris Wessel: Red Light

Let the games begin, as these Miami greats have only made the first round of cuts so far. The next challenge will be to survive the chopping block to make it to the finalist round of five on March 22, and then on to claim the grand prize at the official awards ceremony on May 3 in New York City.