Rasika is a semifinalist in the Outstanding Restaurant category for the James Beard Awards. (Dixie D. Vereen for The Washington Post)

The James Beard Foundation showed Washington some love today, when it announced the semifinalists for its 2016 Restaurant and Chef Awards.

The operative word: semifinalists. The semifinalist list was culled from an open call that netted about 20,000 submissions. From those, the foundation's Restaurant and Chef Awards Committee (critics, writers and editors) created the semifinalist list.

The next step will see five semifinalists from each category advance as the nominees, after former Beard Award winners, committee members and other regional panelists vote. The nominees (the finalists, if you will) are set to be announced March 15. The ultimate winners will be honored May 2 in Chicago.

Here are the nominees from Washington and environs that are in the running:

Best New Restaurant

The Dabney


Outstanding Baker

Mark Furstenberg, Bread Furst

Outstanding Bar Program


Mockingbird Hill

Outstanding Pastry Chef

Aggie Chin, the Grill Room

Outstanding Restaurant



Outstanding Restaurateur

Ashok Bajaj, Knightsbridge Restaurant Group (Bombay Club, Oval Room, Rasika and more)

Outstanding Service



Outstanding Wine Program

Red Hen

Outstanding Wine, Beer, or Spirits Professional

Sam Calagione, Dogfish Head Craft Brewery

Rutger de Vink, RdV Vineyards

Diane Flynt, Foggy Ridge Cider

Best Chef: Mid-Atlantic

Victor Albisu, Del Campo

Erik Bruner-Yang, Maketto

Hari Cameron, a(MUSE.) (Rehoboth Beach, Del.)

Peter Chang, Peter Chang

Tarver King, Restaurant at Patowmack Farm

Cedric Maupillier, Convivial

Aaron Silverman, Rose's Luxury

Cindy Wolf, Charleston

For the complete list of semifinalists, head on over to the James Beard Foundation's site.

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