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Seven Twin Cities Chefs, Restaurants, and Bars Are James Beard Semifinalists for 2024

Of those seven, four are competing in national categories

The James Beard award medal, cast in bronze, with the likeness of James Beard surrounded with the words “James Beard Foundation Award for Excellence” against a black background.
Finalists for the awards will be announced later this spring.
Victor Spinelli/Getty
Justine Jones is the editor of Eater Twin Cities.

Today, January 24, the James Beard Foundation announced its 2024 list of semifinalists. The Awards gave a total of seven nods to the Twin Cities, including four in national categories:

Chefs Lisa Carlson and Carrie Summer are also semifinalists for Best Chef, Midwest for their Bay City, Wisconsin restaurant Chef Shack, which they launched as one of the Twin Cities’ very first food trucks in 2007, before eventually relocating to Wisconsin in 2019.

Del Prado was both a James Beard semifinalist (2019) and finalist (2020) for Best Chef for his restaurant Martina; Porzana, his North Loop Argentinian steakhouse, is the latest addition to his vast portfolio of Twin Cities restaurants, which includes Colita, Rosalia, and others. This is the first time the James Beard Foundation has recognized Heu, Meteor, and (naturally) Oro by Nixta, which opened in May of 2023 and was Eater Twin Cities’ restaurant of the year.

Last year, Ahmed, Nguyen, and Tomlinson were semifinalists in the Best Chef, Midwest category alongside Yia Vang (Union Hmong Kitchen), though none were named as finalists. (Nguyen was a finalist for Best Chef for Hai Hai in 2020.) Café Cerés pastry chef Shawn McKenzie was a finalist for Outstanding Pastry Chef or Baker, but that award ultimately went to pastry chef Margarita Manzke of LA restaurant République. In 2022, Indigenous restaurant Owamni won Best New Restaurant.

2024 James Beard finalists will be announced April 3, with a gala revealing the winners to follow in Chicago on June 10. Find the full list of semifinalists here.

Disclosure: Some Vox Media staff members are part of the voting body for the James Beard Awards.

Update: January 24, 10:03 a.m.: This article was updated to include details on Chef Shack.