Sam Calagione, Garrett Oliver Named James Beard Award Finalists

Dogfish Head’s Sam Calagione and Brooklyn Brewery’s Garrett Oliver are again finalists for a 2012 James Beard Award in the Outstanding Wine, Beer or Spirits Professional category.

Both brewers were nominated last year when, interestingly enough, the category was named “Outstanding Wine & Spirits Professional.” The James Beard Foundation has since added “beer” to the title of the category.

In 2003, the founder of Anchor Brewing, Fritz Maytag, took home the Wine and Spirits award and in 2008 he received the lifetime achievement award for his work in pioneering American micro-brewing.

Below is the complete press release from the James Beard Foundation.

NEW YORK – The James Beard Foundation is proud to announce the final nominees for the 2012 James Beard Foundation Awards, the nation’s most prestigious recognition program honoring professionals in the culinary world—from restaurants and chefs to cookbook authors and media.

The nominees were announced today during a press brunch at The Azure Pool at The Venetian and The Palazzo in Las Vegas, NV, hosted by Susan Ungaro, James Beard Foundation President, Woodrow W. Campbell, James Beard Foundation Board Chairman, and John Caparella, President and COO of The Venetian, The Palazzo and Sands Expo.

“The Venetian and The Palazzo are an ideal setting for this year’s finalists announcement because they are home to more James Beard Awarding-winning chefs than any hotel in the world,” said Susan Ungaro, President of the James Beard Foundation.

Nominees in 56 categories were announced in the Foundation’s various awards programs – Restaurant and Chef, Restaurant Design and Graphics, Book, Broadcast and Journalism – in addition to special achievement award honorees including Lifetime Achievement, Humanitarian of the Year, Who’s Who of Food & Beverage in America and America’s Classics. This year, the Foundation has added a new award category, Outstanding Bar Program, recognizing a restaurant or bar that demonstrated excellence in cocktail, spirits, and/or beer service. A complete list of nominees can be found at the end of this release, as well as on

On Friday, May 4, 2012, the James Beard Foundation Book, Broadcast & Journalism Awards Dinner, an exclusive event honoring the nation’s top cookbooks, culinary broadcast programs, and food journalists, will take place at Gotham Hall in New York City. The evening will be co-hosted by James Beard Award—winning celebrity chef and Food Network Iron Chef, Michael Symon and four-time James Beard Award—winning CBS News Correspondent Martha Teichner. The following Monday, May 7, 2012, multiple James Beard Award—winning chef, television personality, and author, Alton Brown will host the James Beard Foundation Awards Ceremony and Gala Reception at Lincoln Center’s Avery Fisher Hall in New York City, during which the Restaurant and Chef and the Restaurant Design and Graphics awards will be handed out, along with a number of special achievement awards. This year the ceremony will once again be streamed online at for those unable to attend the live program in New York City, allowing them to participate in this moment of culinary history. The Award winners will also be posted in real time on the James Beard Foundation’s Twitter page at

Established in 1990, the James Beard Foundation Awards recognize culinary professionals for excellence and achievement in their fields and continue to emphasize the Foundation’s mission: to celebrate, preserve, and nurture America’s culinary heritage and diversity. Each award category has an individual Awards Committee made up of industry professionals who volunteer their time to oversee the policies, procedures, and selection of judges for their respective Awards program. All award winners receive a certificate and a medallion engraved with the James Beard Foundation Awards insignia. There are no cash prizes.

Tickets to the May 7th Awards Ceremony and Gala Reception are now on sale and can be purchased at or through the Awards Box Office at 914.231.6180. General public tickets are $475 ($425 for James Beard Foundation members.)

The 2012 James Beard Foundation Awards are presented with support by the following partners: Premier Sponsors: All-Clad Metalcrafters, Green & Black’s Organic Chocolate, Lenox Tableware and Gifts, Mercedes-Benz; Supporting Sponsors: Campari, The Coca-Cola Company, Delta Air Lines, Jade Range LLC, Lavazza, Southern Wine & Spirits of New York, Stella Artois, Urbanspoon; Gala Reception Sponsors: Acqua Panna┬« Natural Spring Water, Ecolab, Pernod Ricard USA, Rums of Puerto Rico, S.Pellegrino┬« Sparkling Natural Mineral Water; and with additional support from Chefwear, St Giles Hotel New York, and Visa Signature.

About the James Beard Foundation:

Founded in 1986, the James Beard Foundation is dedicated to celebrating, preserving, and nurturing America’s culinary heritage and diversity in order to elevate the appreciation of our culinary excellence. A cookbook author and teacher with an encyclopedic knowledge about food, James Beard, who died in 1985, was a champion of American cuisine. He helped educate and mentor generations of professional chefs and food enthusiasts. Today, the Beard Foundation continues in the same spirit by administering a number of diverse programs that include educational initiatives, food industry awards, scholarships to culinary schools, and publications, and by maintaining the historic James Beard House in New York City’s Greenwich Village as a “performance space” for visiting chefs. For more information, please visit Find insights on food at the James Beard Foundation’s blog Delights & Prejudices. Join the James Beard Foundation on Facebook. Follow the James Beard Foundation on Twitter.

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