Black-owned establishment wins James Beard Award for the nation’s best new restaurant



Chef Edouardo Jordan

by Frederick H. Lowe

JuneBaby, a black-owned restaurant that serves southern-style cuisine in the Pacific Northwest city of Seattle has been named the 2018 Best New Restaurant by the James Beard Foundation.

Chef Edouardo Jordan accepted the award during a ceremony Monday at the Lyric Opera House in Chicago. Jordan also was named best chef in the Northwest.

The award honors a restaurant that opens in the calendar year before the award is given that already displays “excellence in food, beverage and service, and that is likely to make an impact in the years to come.” JuneBaby, his father’s nickname, opened last year.

JuneBaby advertises its menu as food with roots. Breads include buttermilk biscuits. Main dishes include chicken fried steak, fried catfish and spring greens. Desserts include pecan pie ice cream sandwiches and chocolate banana rum cake.

The restaurant acknowledges that Southern cooking is not held in high regard by some.

“Southern cuisine has always had and continues to have stereotypical connotations. Seen through the eyes of most Americans as inferior, unsophisticated, and unhealthy, Southern food reflects hard times and resourcefulness and is nothing short of beautiful. It is a cuisine to be respected and celebrated,” Jordan wrote.

The James Beard Foundation’s mission is to celebrate, nurture and honor chefs and other leaders making America’s food and culture more delicious, diverse and sustainable for everyone.

JuneBaby is open for lunch and dinner.



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