Two Asheville chefs, a baker, and a brewer have been named semi-finalists for prestigious James Beard Foundation awards. Katie Button of Nightbell and Curate and Meherwan Irani of Chai Pani are semi-finalists for the Best Chef of the Southeast. Six of the 20 semi-finalists in the category hail from North Carolina, with other nominees coming from Raleigh, Davidson, Winterville, and Kinston.
David Bauer of Farm & Sparrow is a semi-finalist for Outstanding Baker, and Leah Wong Ashburn of Highlands Brewing is a semi-finalist for Outstanding Wine, Beer, or Spirits Professional. Finalists for the awards will be announced March 14th.