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AZ Represent! Locals on Beard Semifinalist List

The highly anticipated

semifinalist list for the annual James Beard Awards

is out today, and some of the state's best and brightest chefs and restaurateurs have made the cut.

Nobuo Fukuda's Nobuo at Teeter House has been nominated for Best New Restaurant.

Two previous semifinalists have once again been included on the Best Chef: Southwest shortlist: Kevin Binkley (Binkley's) and Silvana Salcido Esparza (Barrio Cafe). Also nominated is John Sharpe, from the Turquoise Room at La Posada in Winslow.

Nominated for Rising Star Chef (a category for chefs under 30) are Andrew Ashmore (The Greene House) and Greg LaPrad (Quiessence).

More 2010 semifinalists are on the 2011 ballot as well, including Sam Fox (Outstanding Restaurateur), Vincent Guerithault  (Outstanding Restaurant), Mark Tarbell's eponymous restaurant Tarbell's (Outstanding Wine Service), and Tucson chef Janos Wilder (Outstanding Chef).

Finalists will be announced on March 9, and winners will be feted in New York City on May 9.

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