The third time actually did turn out to be the charm for Bread Furst founder Mark Furstenberg, who May 1 bested the competition in the “Outstanding Baker” category at the 2017 James Beard Foundation Awards gala.
Furstenberg had been nominated for his baking skills the past two years, as well as earning two nods a decade ago in the best chef in the Mid-Atlantic rankings. His was the only victory for D.C-based chefs and restaurants this year.
Amy Brandwein of Centrolina and Tom Cunanan of Bad Saint were up for best chef in the Mid-Atlantic, but that honor ultimately went to Philadelphian Greg Vernick of Vernick Food & Drink. Aaron Silverman’s Pineapple and Pearls was in contention for best new restaurant of the year; that prize was bestowed upon Le Coucou in New York.
Retiring chef Nora Pouillon was honored with a lifetime achievement award for her pioneering work at Restaurant Nora. Pouillon is actively trying to sell the restaurant, which she has said will close on June 30.