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Today the James Beard Foundation announced the nominees for its 2011 Awards (aka the Oscars of the food world), and while Chicago has its usually healthy representation of late, we're most proud of our very own Julia Thiel and Sky Full of Bacon's Mike Gebert, who were nominated for their four-month-old Key Ingredient series, in particular the first three episodes:
And as for the chef and restaurant awards: Paul Kahan is up for Outstanding Chef, Mindy Segal of Hot Chocolate (who recently participated in Key Ingredient) and Blackbird's Patrick Fahy for Outstanding Pastry Chef, Rich Melman for Outstanding Restaurateur, Girl & the Goat for Best New Restaurant, Topolobampo for Outstanding Service, The Publican for Outstanding Restaurant Graphics, and for Best Chef Great Lakes: Michael Carlson, Curtis Duffy, Bruce Sherman, and Paul Virant (, another one of our early Key Ingredient participants).
What? No Arun's?
Congratulations, and good luck to all.