James Beard Foundation is a nonprofit organization dedicated to celebrating and supporting the culinary arts in America. Named after the famous cookbook author and teacher James Beard, the foundation was established in 1986 and has since become one of the most prestigious culinary organizations in the world.

At the heart of the James Beard Foundation's mission is the belief that food can be a powerful force for social and cultural change. Through its various programs and initiatives, the foundation seeks to promote sustainability, diversity, and inclusivity in the food industry while recognizing the talents and accomplishments of chefs, restaurateurs, and other food professionals.

One of the most well-known aspects of the James Beard Foundation is its annual awards program. Dubbed the "Oscars of the food world," the James Beard Awards recognize excellence in various categories, including best new restaurant, outstanding chef, and pastry chef. The awards are highly coveted within the industry, and winning one is often seen as a career-defining achievement.

But the James Beard Foundation is much more than just its awards program. The organization also sponsors several educational and outreach programs, including a scholarship program for aspiring chefs, a mentorship program for women in the food industry, and a program that helps connect chefs with local farmers and producers.

Overall, the James Beard Foundation is an essential organization in the culinary world and is doing vital work to promote sustainability, diversity, and inclusivity in the food industry. Whether you're a food professional, a home cook, or simply a lover of good food, the foundation is worth watching!


The James Beard Foundation® announced the six recipients of its 2023 America's Classics Award. A Restaurant and Chef Awards category, America's Classics Award is given to locally owned restaurants with timeless appeal that are beloved regionally for quality food that reflects the character of their community.

James Beard Awards policies and procedures can be viewed at jamesbeard.org/awards/policies, and an overview of the voting process can be viewed here. For full America’s Classics Award eligibility criteria, please see here.

James Beard Award

Image Source: Instagram

The 2023 James Beard Foundation America’s Classics Award winners are:

America’s Classics: Texas Region
Joe’s Bakery & Coffee Shop
2305 E 7th St, Austin, Texas
Owner: Paula Avila


Image Source: Instagram

Joe's Bakery & Coffee Shop is a must-visit spot for anyone looking for a delicious and authentic breakfast or lunch in Austin, Texas. Located in the heart of East Austin, this family-owned bakery has been serving mouthwatering Mexican-American cuisine since 1962.

One thing that sets Joe's Bakery & Coffee Shop apart is their commitment to using fresh, high-quality ingredients in all their dishes. Everything on the menu is made with care and attention to detail, from homemade tortillas to perfectly seasoned meats.

If you're in the mood for breakfast, try one of their famous breakfast tacos or their hearty breakfast plates, which come with eggs, beans, potatoes, and your choice of meat. And if you're stopping by for lunch, you won't be disappointed by their delicious enchiladas, tacos, and other Tex-Mex favorites.

But it's not just the food that makes Joe's Bakery & Coffee Shop special. The cozy, family-friendly atmosphere and friendly service make this spot a favorite among locals and visitors. And don't forget to try their signature homemade cakes and pastries, which are the perfect way to end any meal.

So if you're in the mood for some delicious and authentic Tex-Mex cuisine in a warm and welcoming environment, head over to Joe's Bakery & Coffee Shop in Austin, Texas. You won't be disappointed!

America’s Classics: South Region
La Casita Blanca
Villa Palmeras
351 Calle Tapia,
San Juan, Puerto Rico
Owners: Jesús Pérez Ruiz, Mildred De León, Leonardo Pérez De León, Jesús Pérez De León

La Casita Blanca

Image Source: Website

If you're looking for an authentic Puerto Rican dining experience, look no further than La Casita Blanca in Santurce, Puerto Rico. This family-owned restaurant has been serving traditional Puerto Rican cuisine for over 70 years, and its commitment to using fresh, locally sourced ingredients shines through in every dish.

Their mofongo, a classic Puerto Rican dish made with mashed plantains and various fillings, is a must-try, as is their savory asopao, a hearty soup with rice, chicken, and a variety of vegetables.

But it's not just the delicious food that makes La Casita Blanca so special. The cozy, rustic atmosphere and friendly service make it a welcoming spot for locals and visitors alike. And if you're looking to try something new, the staff is always happy to make recommendations and share their knowledge of Puerto Rican cuisine and culture.

So if you're in Santurce and looking for authentic Puerto Rican cuisine, check out La Casita Blanca. You won't be disappointed!

America’s Classics: Pacific and Northwest Region
Manago Hotel
82-6155 Hawaiʻi Belt Rd, Captain Cook, HI
Owners: Britney and Taryn Manago

Manago Hotel

Image Source: Instagram

This family-owned hotel has been a fixture in Captain Cook for over 100 years, and its charming, old-world atmosphere and beautiful surroundings make it a must-visit destination for anyone looking for a unique and authentic Hawaiian experience.

The hotel's spacious and comfortable rooms are decorated in a traditional Hawaiian style, with beautiful wood furnishings and unique artwork. And with its convenient location just minutes from some of the island's most stunning beaches and attractions, the Manago Hotel is the perfect base to explore all the Big Island offers.

But one of the best things about the Manago Hotel is its famous restaurant, which has been serving delicious Hawaiian and Japanese cuisine since 1917. Their signature dish, the pork chops, is a must-try, and the restaurant's charming, retro decor adds to the overall experience.

America’s Classics: Northeast Region
Nezinscot Farm
284 Turner Center Rd, Turner, Maine
Owner: Gloria and Gregg Varney


Image Source: Instagram

 This small, family-owned farm and market is dedicated to sustainability and offers a wide range of fresh, organic produce, meats, cheeses, and baked goods.

The farm's on-site market is a treasure trove of local and organic products, including freshly baked bread and pastries, handmade cheeses, and farm-raised meats. And for those who want to get closer to the source, the farm also offers tours and workshops, where visitors can learn about sustainable agriculture and even try making their cheese or butter.

But Nezinscot Farm is more than just a place to shop for local produce. The farm also has a cozy cafe where visitors can enjoy delicious meals made from the farm's ingredients. From hearty breakfast sandwiches to farm-fresh salads and sandwiches, the menu celebrates all Maine's local farms offer.


America’s Classics: Mountain Region
Pekin Noodle Parlor
117 S Main St, Butte, Montana
Owner: Jerry Tam


Image Source: Instagram

The restaurant's cozy atmosphere and vintage decor give it a unique, old-world charm, and the menu is a testament to its commitment to authentic flavors and techniques. Every dish is made with care and attention to detail, from the savory beef chow mein to the delicious egg foo young.

But what sets Pekin Noodle Parlor apart is its famous chop suey, a dish that has become synonymous with the restaurant itself. Made with a variety of fresh vegetables and meats and served over a bed of crispy noodles, the chop suey is a delicious and satisfying dish not to be missed.

America’s Classics: Great Lakes Region
Wagner’s Village Inn
22171 Main St, Oldenburg, Indiana
Owner: Dan Saccomando

Wagner's Inn

Image Source: Instagram

This family-owned restaurant has been serving hearty, home-cooked meals since 1955, and its commitment to quality and tradition has made it a local institution.

The menu celebrates all the classic American dishes you know and love, from crispy fried chicken to savory pot roast and tender pork chops. And with generous portions and affordable prices, you'll feel satisfied and well-fed.

But what sets Wagner's Village Inn apart is its friendly service and cozy atmosphere. The staff is always happy to chat with customers and make them feel at home, and the restaurant's warm, inviting decor makes it the perfect spot for a family meal or a cozy dinner for two.

The 2023 Awards ceremonies will be held in our proud host city of Chicago on the
following dates:
● Media Awards: Saturday, June 3, 2023
● Leadership Awards: Sunday, June 4, 2023
● Restaurant and Chef Awards: Monday, June 5, 2023

For more information about the James Beard Foundation Awards, visit jamesbeard.org/awards. For up-to-the-minute news about the Awards, follow @beardfoundation on Twitter and Instagram and keep an eye out for posts using #jbfa.

MMGY Wagstaff