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Restaurants & Bars

Eight Dallas-Area Restaurants and Chefs Are Semifinalists in the 2024 James Beard Awards

More than 40 bars, chefs, and restaurants in Texas made the list this year.
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David Uygur of Lucia was named a semifinalist in the Outstanding Chef category.

The James Beard Awards dropped its 2024 semifinalists Wednesday morning, with eight North Texas restaurants and chefs landing a spot on the coveted list.

Lucia‘s David Uygur is a semifinalist in the national Outstanding Chef category, and La Casita Bakeshop in Richardson made it in the Outstanding Bakery category for the second year in a row. Last year, Lucia was a finalist in Outstanding Restaurant, and La Casita advanced to become a finalist for Outstanding Bakery.

Gemma, which recently revamped its menu, was named a semifinalist in the Outstanding Hospitality category.

In the Best Chef: Texas category, semifinalists include Misti Norris of Petra and the Beast, Anastacia Quiñones-Pittman of José, Regino Rojas of Purépecha, Arnulfo (Trey) Sánchez of Vaqueros Texas Bar-B-Q in Grapevine, and Rich Vana of The Heritage Table in Frisco. Quiñones-Pittman and Rojas were both semifinalists in this category last year. Round of applause, folks.

Eight semifinalists is quite a drop from last year’s whopping 15, which include the six North Texas restaurants and chefs that made it to the finalist round. None of them made it out with an award. With a few repeats in some of this year’s categories, maybe we’ll get a chance.

Finalists will be announced in April, and a ceremony will be held in Chicago in June to announce the winners. Check out the full list of semifinalists here, and the list of Texas semifinalists below:

Outstanding Restaurateur

Itai Ben Eli and Itamar Levy, Sof Hospitality Group, Houston, TX

Outstanding Chef

  • David Kirkland and Ernest Servantes, Burnt Bean Co., Seguin, TX 
  • David Uygur, Lucia, Dallas, TX

Outstanding Restaurant

  • Convenience West, Marfa, TX 
  • Mixtli, San Antonio, TX  
  • Nancy’s Hustle, Houston, TX

Emerging Chef

Ope Amosu, ChòpnBlọk, Houston, TX

Best New Restaurant

  • Barbs-B-Q, Lockhart, TX  
  • Jūn, Houston, TX
  • Ramen Del Barrio, Austin, TX  

Outstanding Bakery

Outstanding Pastry Chef or Baker

  • Mariela Camacho, Comadre Panadería, Austin, TX  
  • Stephanie Velasquez, Ema HTX, Houston, TX  

Outstanding Hospitality

  • Bludorn, Houston, TX  
  • Gemma, Dallas, TX  

Outstanding Wine and Other Beverages Program

  • Bufalina, Austin, TX  
  • Taconeta, El Paso, TX  

Outstanding Bar

Las Ramblas, Brownsville, TX

Best Chef: Texas

  • Thomas Bille, Belly of the Beast, Spring, TX
  • Tavel Bristol-Joseph, Canje, Austin, TX
  • Emmanuel Chavez, Tatemó, Houston, TX 
  • Mark Clayton, Squable, Houston, TX
  • Christopher Cullum, Cullum’s Attaboy, San Antonio, TX
  • Victoria Elizondo, Cochinita & Co., Houston, TX
  • Geoff Ellis, Mum Foods Smokehouse & Delicatessen, Austin, TX
  • Alexandra Gates, Cochineal, Marfa, TX
  • Joseph Gomez, Con Todo, Austin, TX
  • Andrew Ho, Andrew Samia, and Sean Wen, Curry Boys BBQ, San Antonio, TX
  • Jennifer Hwa Dobbertin, Best Quality Daughter, San Antonio, TX
  • Tracy Malechek-Ezekiel, Birdie’s, Austin, TX
  • Emiliano Marentes, Elemi, El Paso, TX
  • Misti Norris, Petra & the Beast, Dallas, TX
  • Fermín Nuñez, Suerte, Austin, TX
  • Ana Liz Pulido, Ana Liz Taqueria, Mission, TX
  • Anastacia Quiñones-Pittman, José, Dallas, TX
  • Regino Rojas, Purépecha, Dallas, TX
  • Arnulfo Sánchez III, Vaqueros Texas Bar-B-Q, Grapevine, TX
  • Rich Vana, The Heritage Table, Frisco, TX

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Nataly Keomoungkhoun

Nataly Keomoungkhoun

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Nataly Keomoungkhoun joined D Magazine as the online dining editor in 2022. She previously worked at the Dallas Morning News,…

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