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This morning the James Beard Foundation set up shop in San Francisco to announce its nominees for the nation's most prestigious culinary awards, a group narrowed down from the longlist of semifinalists released last month.

After representing in every national category, Seattle experienced...a bit of culling. Of the national awards, Canlis is nominated for Outstanding Wine Program. I guess we'll kinda claim Michael Mina's nod for Best Restaurateur, since he has an RN74 location here in Seattle.

I was really sad to say goodbye to some of the names on the longlist, but fricking thrilled to have Renee Erickson, Mike Easton, and Rachel Yang and Seif Chirchi up for Best Chef Northwest, even after a weird screwup with the ballots.

The awards happen on May 2 in Chicago; Carla Hall is hosting. Here's the full list of nominees and, below, our Best Chef Northwest contenders.

Best Chef Northwest:

Greg Denton and Gabrielle Quiñónez Denton, Ox, Portland, OR
Mike Easton, Il Corvo Pasta, Seattle
Renee Erickson, The Whale Wins, Seattle
Justin Woodward, Castagna, Portland, OR
Rachel Yang and Seif Chirchi, Joule, Seattle

This morning the Beard Foundation also announced its journalism and book awards. Seattle writer Langdon Cook is nominated in the home cooking category for his piece "Into the Woods" in Eating Well magazine and my hands have been shaking pretty much since the moment they announced that my story in our March 2015 issue, The Brief Extraordinary Life of Cody Spafford, is nominated in the profile category. But most of all...hooray for our nominated chefs. Can't wait to see how this all goes down in Chicago on May 2.

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