By: Lorene Yue, Crain’s Chicago

One Off Hospitality Group and chef Carrie Nahabedian emerged as semifinalists for the 2014 James Beard Foundation awards.

The awards, considered the Oscars of the culinary industry, today revealed semifinalists in 10 major categories. There also are semifinalists for Best Chef in 10 U.S. regions. Chicago-area chefs, restaurateurs and beverage-industry workers were nominated in each of 10 major categories, as well as Best Chef in the Great Lakes Region.

One Off Hospitality, owners of Blackbird, Violet Hour and Nico Osteria, has semifinalists in six categories including Best New Restaurant and Rising Chef of the Year. Ms. Nahabedian, who co-owns Naha and Brindille restaurants, is a semifinalist in the Outstanding Chef and Best New Restaurant categories.

Earning a James Beard Foundation award is a process that starts with an open call for entries. More than 38,000 entries were whittled down to the list of semifinalists. A group of more than 600 culinary industry representatives then choose the finalists, which will be announced March 18 at Publican restaurant.

Chicago landed three James Beard Awards last year,including chef Paul Kahan sharing the award with David Chang of New York’s Momofuku restaurants.

Restaurant and chef winners are revealed May 5 in New York. Winners for book, broadcast and journalism categories are announced May 2.

A look at Chicago-area semifinalists:

Best New Restaurant

Brindille

Nico Osteria

Outstanding Restaurant

Spiaggia

Outstanding Chef

Carrie Nahabedian, Naha

Outstanding Pastry Chef

Dana Cree, Blackbird

Outsanding Restaurateur

Donnie Madia, One Off Hospitality Group

Outstanding Service

L2O

Topolobampo

Outstanding Bar Program

Violet Hour

Outstanding Wine Program

Sepia

Outstanding Wine, Spirits or Beer Professional

Mike, Nick and Simon Floyd, Three Floyds Brewing

Rising Star Chef of the Year

Jimmy Bannos Jr., Purple Pig

Matthew Kirkley, L2O

David Posey, Blackbird

Best Chef: Great Lakes Region

Dave Beran, Next, Chicago

Abraham Conlon and Adrienne Lo, Fat Rice

Curtis Duffy, Grace

Paul Fehribach, Big Jones

Phillip Foss, EL Ideas

Ryan McCaskey, Acadia

Iliana Regan, Elizabeth

Jason Vincent, Nightwood

Paul Virant, Vie Restaurant

Erling Wu-Bower, Nico Osteria

Andrew Zimmerman, Sepia

Lorene Yue

Follow On Dining on Twitter at @CrainsLife.

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