Portland’s Gourdet, Langbaan earn James Beard Awards

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PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) – For those who work in the culinary industry, winning an award from the James Beard Foundation is like winning an Oscar. It’s a prestigious honor that many seek, but few collect.

Two of Oregon’s six nominees were named top of their categories at the 2024 James Beard Awards in Chicago.

Gregory Gourdet — who previously won a James Beard Award for his celebrated Haitian restaurant Kann — was named Best Chef in the Pacific Northwest in the early part of the Monday night awards.

“Portland has been my home for over 15 years now and I’m so honored to be representing our chef community in Chicago this June, alongside so many talented chefs across the country and the Pacific Northwest region,” Gourdet said in a statement to KOIN 6 News.

And Langbaan in Northwest Portland was named Outstanding Restaurant for demonstrating “consistent excellence in food, atmosphere, hospitality, and operations, while contributing positively to its broader community.”

Portland's Gregory Gourdet, right, accepts his James Beard Award as Best Chef in the Pacific Northwest at a ceremony in Chicago, June 10, 2024 (Courtesy)
Portland’s Gregory Gourdet, right, accepts his James Beard Award as Best Chef in the Pacific Northwest at a ceremony in Chicago, June 10, 2024 (Courtesy)

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Portland restaurateur Sarah Minnick was named a finalist in the “Outstanding Chef” category, which highlights chefs who set high standards, set good examples for their peers and positively contribute to their community.

Minnick owns Mississippi Avenue pizzeria Lovely’s Fifty Fifty and has been featured on Netflix’s Emmy-nominated culinary series “Chef’s Table.”

The Willamette Valley’s Hayward, which opened in May 2023, was nominated as “Best New Restaurant” for already displaying excellence in the culinary industry. The McMinnville eatery boasts a “new northwest fare” and a “hyper-seasonal” menu.

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North Portland dessert spot JinJu Patisserie was named an “Outstanding Bakery” finalist. The bakery is co-owned by master chocolatier Jin Caldwell and pastry chef Kyurim Lee, who relocated from Las Vegas to the Rose City over a decade ago.

Two Oregon restaurateurs were named finalists among the Pacific Northwest’s “Best Chefs.” Unlike the “Outstanding Chef” category, this category additionally focuses on building a sustainable work culture.

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Ashland chef Josh Dorcak, of Cascadian cuisine restaurant MÄS, is also a finalist. Dorcak was nominated in the same category last year.

KOIN 6 News will have more information later.

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