The James Beard Foundation has announced that the entry and recommendation period for the 2022 James Beard Awards is officially open. These Awards will be the first since 2019 to be presented at an in-person ceremony with a full roster of nominees and honorees.

The James Beard Foundation announced in August 2020 that it would not be handing out Awards in 2021 while the program underwent an internal and external review of policies and procedures, ensuring a more transparent, accessible and equitable process for future James Beard Awards. The Foundation made a number of changes to Awards policies, procedures and some of its categories. The changes were made to address systemic bias, increase the diversity of the voting body and make the Awards more accessible to more communities.

“We are thrilled to announce the call for entry for the 2022 James Beard Awards, with a strengthened commitment toward celebrating the rich diversity of our industry,” says Dawn Padmore, vice president of the Awards. “In light of all the challenges faced since the pandemic, we look forward to returning to the stage, recognizing excellence and championing an industry where everyone has the opportunity to reach their highest potential.”

The deadline for submitting entries (Media Awards) and recommendations (Restaurant and Chef Awards and Leadership Awards) is Tuesday, November 30, 2021 at 11:59 pm EST. The Restaurant and Chef Awards semifinalists will be announced on Wednesday, February 23, 2022. Nominees for all award categories will be revealed in the spring.

Among the changes in the Restaurant and Chef categories:

  • The Rising Star Chef of the Year category is now Emerging Chef with no age limit, in recognition that a chef may become part of the industry at various points in their life.
  • The Outstanding Chef category has changed from someone working as a chef for five years to now at least three consecutive years.
  • The Outstanding Pastry Chef category was previously for a pastry chef or baker who makes desserts, pastries, or breads served in a restaurant. It is now for a pastry chef or chef who makes desserts, pastries, or breads served as part of a meal. Eligible businesses can be a food business and do not need to be brick-and-mortar.   
  • Outstanding Wine Program and Outstanding Bar Program candidates are making efforts to foster a diverse portfolio and team in addition to excellent service.

More information and the full list of 2022 Awards programs, criteria and deadlines can be found at the James Beard Foundation’s Awards page.