May 2 (UPI) — The James Beard Foundation named Chicago’s Topolobampo as America’s Outstanding Restaurant at its annual black-tie event.
It was the second-consecutive year a Chicago restaurant won the prestigious honor at the event, regarded as the Academy Awards of the food world; Alinea won in 2016.
Topolobampo, which features Mexican cuisine, was nominated for the first time. The restaurant is owned by Rick Bayless and Deann Bayless, whose Frontera restaurant in Chicago won the award in 2007.
“There’s the experience of learning so much and bringing back to this country,” Rick Bayless told the Chicago Tribune of his restaurant’s inspiration. “There’s a spirit of the immigrant in all of us that we’ve brought back with our work. The flavors that carry best on the plate, are the very best we create when we’re living our own truth.”
Le Coucou, a New York City restaurant, won the award for the best new restaurant.
Restaurants in New York, Philadelphia, Portland, Ore. Seattle, New Orleans, Houston and San Francisco also won national awards in other dining and bar categories.