Several Tulsa eateries on James Beard Awards semi-finalist list

TULSA, Okla. — The semi-finalists for the 2023 James Beard Restaurant and Chef Awards were announced Wednesday with several Tulsa eateries making the list.

The James Beard Awards, considered to be among the nation’s most prestigious honors, recognize exceptional talent in the culinary and food media industries.

The 2023 awards will be the first since categories and the voting process changed after a 2021 audit. The changes include removing an age cutoff for emerging chef and specialized awards by region.

Restaurant Group 3 Sirens made the list for Outstanding Restaurateur: A restaurateur who uses their establishment(s) as a vehicle for building community, demonstrates creativity in entrepreneurship and integrity in restaurant operations, and is making efforts to create a sustainable work culture, while contributing positively to their broader community.

That group owns Bird & Bottle, near 31st and Harvard, Shakey Jakes in Broken Arrow, Bramble which has several locations and Holé Molé which shares the Bramble location near 6th and Peoria.

FOX23 covered two semi-finalists for their unique idea to use the same restaurant space as breakfast eateries in the evenings. Similar to Holé Molé, Et Al. takes over the Foolish Things Coffee location in downtown Tulsa offering different dinner concepts depending on the day of the week.

Et Al. is a semifinalist for Best New Restaurant: A restaurant opened between January 1, 2022, through September 30, 2022, that already demonstrates excellence in cuisine, atmosphere, hospitality, and operations while contributing positively to its broader community, and seems likely to make a significant impact in years to come. Those establishments that have opened after September 30, 2022, can be considered for the 2024 awards.

SMOKE. Woodfire Grill on Cherry Street is in the running for Outstanding Hospitality: A restaurant, bar or other food and drinking establishment that fosters a sense of hospitality among its customers and staff that serves as a beacon for the community and demonstrates consistent excellence in food, atmosphere, hospitality, and operations while contributing positively to its broader community.

American Solera, which opened in a remodeled warehouse in 2016 near 6th and Utica, could take home a win for Outstanding Bar: Expanded to include wine and other beverages, this award is presented to a wine bar, beer bar, cocktail bar, coffee bar, or any other business whose primary offering is beverage and that demonstrates consistent excellence in curating a selection or in the preparation of drinks, along with outstanding atmosphere, hospitality, and operations while contributing positively to its broader community.

Tulsa really shined in the The Best Chef: Southwest category: Chefs who set high standards in their culinary skills and leadership abilities, and who are making efforts to help create a sustainable work culture in their respective regions while contributing positively to their broader community.

Chefs from Arizona, New Mexico, Nevada and Oklahoma are considered for this category.

Oklahoma took home 5 of the 20 spots:

  • Ben Alexander, Mr. Kims, Tulsa, OK
  • Lisa Becklund, FarmBar, Tulsa, OK
  • Andrew Black, Grey Sweater, Oklahoma City, OK
  • Jeff Chanchaleune, Ma Der Lao Kitchen, Oklahoma City, OK
  • Paul Wilson, Boston Title & Abstract, Tulsa, OK

Finalists will be announced March 29. Winners will be announced June 5 at an awards ceremony in Chicago.

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