NEW YORK Gavin Kaysen, executive chef of Café Boulud in New York City, was named “Rising Star Chef” of the year by the James Beard Foundation at its annual ceremony, held this year at Avery Fisher Hall in New York City. The award, given to chefs aged 30 or younger, has helped launch many careers, including that of New York-based celebrity chef Bobby Flay, who co-hosted the awards with actress Kim Cattrall.?
“If my mom and dad weren’t such terrible cooks, I never would have become a chef myself,” said Kaysen, who recently moved to New York from San Diego, where he was chef of El Bizcocho at the Rancho Bernardo Inn.?
Other big winners included the restaurant Central Michel Richard in Washington, D.C., which was named the year’s best new restaurant. The award was accepted by a boisterous, exuberant Michel Richard, who hugged and kissed everyone onstage.?
Grant Achatz, executive chef of Alinea in Chicago, received a standing ovation when he was named the winner of the Outstanding Chef award. Achatz, who had been battling advanced cancer of the mouth for the past year, said it was the tenacity and drive that he learned when working at The French Laundry in Yountville, Calif., where he started as a 22-year-old in 1996, that saved his life, in that it helped him get through “a pretty ridiculous battle,” that he has been fighting.? He also thanked the audience of fine-dining chefs and restaurateurs for the support they offered over the past year, saying it “was critical at a time when I needed it.”?
Gramercy Tavern in New York won the Outstanding Restaurant award, and New York-based operators Joe Bastianich and Mario Batali were named Outstanding Restaurateurs. ?Elisabeth Preuitt and Chad Robertson of Tartine Bakery in San Francisco were named the Outstanding Pastry Chefs.?
The Outstanding Wine Service award went to Eleven Madison Park in New York, while Terry Theise of Terry Theise Estate Selections in Silver Spring, Md., was name Wine and Spirits Professional of the year.?
The Outstanding Restaurant Design Awards went to Tadao Ando for Morimoto in New York City and the Restaurant Graphics award wwentith to Robert Louey Design for Sepia in Chicago.?
The outstanding service award was given to Terra in St. Helena, Calif.?
In the regional Awards, Craig Stoll of Delfina in San Francisco won for the Pacific. Eric Ziebold of CityZen in Washington, D.C., won for the Mid-Atlantic. Adam Siegel of Bartolotta’s Lake Park Bistro in Milwaukee won for the Midwest, and Carrie Nahabedian of Naha in Chicago won the award for best chef in the Great Lakes region.? David Chang of Momofuku Ssäm Bar won the New York City Award. Patrick Connolly of Radius in Boston won for the Northeast.?
In the Northwest, Holly Smith of Café Juanita in Kirkland, Wash., won the award, and in the Southeast Robert Stehling of Hominy Grill in Charleston, S.C., was the winner. ?Lachlan Mackinnon-Patterson of Frasca food and Wine in Boulder, Colo., was named best chef in the Southwest, and Michelle Bernstein of Michy’s in Miami won in the South.