The James Beard Foundation nominated two local restaurant owners last week as semifinalists for its 2018 Restaurant and Chef Awards.
Sean Lilly Wilson of Durham was nominated in the category of Outstanding Wine, Beer or Spirits Professional and Gabe Barker of Carrboro was nominated as a Rising Star Chef of the Year.
The James Beard Foundation supports and celebrates chefs and other culinary leaders around the country. Their annual Restaurant and Chef Awards identify exceptional chefs who have made exciting strides in the world of food and drink. The semifinalists are nominated each February, the finalists in March and the winners are revealed in May.
Wilson is the owner and founder of Fullsteam Brewery, which designs distinctly Southern, agriculturally inspired beer.
“It’s about using local grains, sweet potatoes and other ingredients that really make you think of the culture of the South,” Wilson said. “I surround myself with people who are passionate about foraging, about farms and about community.”