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3 Pinoy chefs in finals of James Beard Awards

Pinoy chefs James Beard Awards
U.S. chefs with Filipino roots (Left to Right): Vince Bugtong of Abaca, Margarita Manzke of Republique, and Aaron Verzosa of Archipelago. Photos from their restaurants’ online accounts.

Filipino chefs Vince Bugtong of Abaca, Margarita Manzke of Republique, and Aaron Verzosa of Archipelago have been nominated for the prestigious James Beard Awards.

Bugtong is the pastry chef at ABACA in San Francisco, California, Manzke is the pastry chef and co-owner of République in Los Angeles, California, and Verzosa is the chef and owner of Archipelago in Seattle, Washington. All three chefs are recognized for their exceptional culinary skills and contributions to their respective communities.

The United States-based chefs with Filipino roots were announced among the finalists nominated for the awards during a live ceremony at the Musicians Hall of Fame & Museum in Nashville, Tennessee, in late March 2023. The awards, considered to be among the nation’s most prestigious honors, recognize exceptional talent in the culinary and food media industries, as well as a demonstrated commitment to racial and gender equity, community, sustainability, and a culture where all can thrive.

Vince Bugtong of ABACA and Margarita Manzke of République are both nominated for “Outstanding Pastry Chef or Baker”, a category that recognizes candidates who demonstrate exceptional skills and can be affiliated with any food business and do not need a brick-and-mortar presence while contributing positively to their broader community.

Outstanding Pastry Chef or Baker nominees:

• Vince Bugtong, ABACA, San Francisco, CA
• Margarita Manzke, République, Los Angeles, CA
• Veronika Gerasimova, Veronika’s Pastry Shop, Billings, MT
• Elaine Uykimpang Bentz, Café Mochiko, Cincinnati, OH
• Shawn McKenzie, Café Cerés, Minneapolis, MN

Aaron Verzosa of Archipelago is nominated for “Best Chef: Northwest and Pacific (AK, HI, OR, WA)” which recognizes chefs who set high standards in their culinary skills and leadership abilities, and who are making efforts to help create a sustainable work culture in their respective regions, while contributing positively to their broader community.

Best Chef: Northwest and Pacific (AK, HI, OR, WA) nominees:

• Aaron Verzosa, Archipelago, Seattle, WA
• Joshua Dorcak, MÄS, Ashland, OR
• Vince Nguyen, Berlu, Portland, OR
• Thomas Pisha-Duffly, Gado Gado, Portland, OR
• Beau Schooler, In Bocca Al Lupo, Juneau, AK

The James Beard Awards ceremony will be held on June 5, 2023, at the Lyric Opera of Chicago. Winners will be celebrated at the event, which recognizes excellence across a range of experiences, from fine-dining establishments to casual gems, and emerging talents to established leaders. The awards will be live-streamed on Eater beginning at 5:30 P.M.

Margarita Manzke and Aaron Verzosa also received previous nominations for the James Beard Awards.

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The Good News Pilipinas Team
The Good News Pilipinas Team
The Good News Pilipinas Team is a group of Filipino journalists who advocate putting more good news stories about the Philippines and Filipinos on the media.

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