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Alinea, Boka Group Headline Chicago's James Beard Awards Finalists

And Sepia is nominated for two awards

James Beard Foundation Awards

Chicago's second hosting of the James Beard Foundation Restaurant and Chef Awards is less than two months away, and the "Oscars of the Food World" announced the 2016 finalists in a live ceremony today in San Francisco. The Chicago food and drink scene will be represented well in its hometown this year, as Alinea is a finalist for one of its highest honors and the Boka Restaurant Group is for three awards, moving on from the semifinalists that were announced in February.

Grant Achatz and Nick Kokonas' flagship picked up a nod for Outstanding Restaurant, the Boka Group for outstanding restaurateur, pastry chef, and Best Chef: Great Lakes, and Sepia is a finalist for two awards. In fact, Chicago swept the Best Chef: Great Lakes category finalists, as one of them, Curtis Duffy, had the documentary made about him also get a nod. Windy City spots are also finalists in the wine program, service, and design categories.

Read all of them below, and head over to Eater National for the full list from around the country. The awards ceremony will take place on May 2 at the Lyric Opera House right here in Sweet Home Chicago for the second year in a row.

Outstanding Restaurant:


Outstanding Restaurateur:

Kevin Boehm and Rob Katz, Boka Restaurant Group

Rising Star Chef of the Year:

Jenner Tomaska, Next

Outstanding Pastry Chef:

Meg Galus, Boka

Best Chef: Great Lakes

Abraham Conlon, Fat Rice

Curtis Duffy, Grace

Lee Wolen, Boka

Erling Wu-Bower, Nico Osteria

Andrew Zimmerman, Sepia

Outstanding Wine Program:


Outstanding Service:

North Pond


Outstanding Design, 76 Seats and Over:

Land & Sea Dept., Cherry Circle Room

Roman and Williams, Cindy's

Best Documentary:

"For Grace"

Fat Rice

2957 West Diversey Avenue, , IL 60647 (773) 661-9170 Visit Website


1729 North Halsted Street, , IL 60614 (312) 337-6070 Visit Website

Nico Osteria

1015 North Rush Street, , IL 60611 (312) 994-7100 Visit Website

Next Restaurant

953 W Fulton Market, Chicago, IL 60607 312 226 0858 Visit Website


652 W. Randolph Street, Chicago, IL 60661 (817) 877-3388


123 North Jefferson Street, , IL 60661 (312) 441-1920 Visit Website


445 North Clark Street, , IL 60654 (312) 661-1434 Visit Website


1500 Colorado Boulevard, , CA 90041 (323) 257-7375 Visit Website


1723 North Halsted Street, , IL 60614 Visit Website

North Pond

2610 North Cannon Drive, , IL 60614 (773) 477-5845 Visit Website

Cherry Circle Room

12 South Michigan Avenue, , IL 60603 (312) 792-3515 Visit Website