Chefs Hugo Ortega of Hugo’s, Xochi, and Backstreet Cafe and Jianyun Ye of Mala Sichuan Bistro will represent Houston at the James Beard Awards this May. The two chefs made the final list of nominees in the Best Chef Southwest category of the renowned culinary industry awards.
This is the sixth time that Ortega is nominated for the awards and the first for Ye. Houston had a big showing in the first round of nominations last month with six chefs named as semifinalists in the Best Chef Southwest category alone.
Ortega and Ye are up against chefs Bryce Gilmore of Barley Swine in Austin; Steve McHugh of Cured in San Antonio; Steve Redzikowski of Acorn in Denver; and Martín Rios of Restaurant Martín in Santa Fe.
Last year Oxheart’s Justin Yu earned the title of Best Chef Southwest at the awards. Will Houston earn another medal this year? We’ll have to wait until May 1 to find out.