The 2017 James Beard Award Winners: A Reading List

Fluke Crudo with Cucumber, Radish & Nasturtium at the kick-off event for the James Beard Foundation’s Taste America® 10-city national tour, held Wednesday, August 3, 2016 at the James Beard House in New York City. (Photo by Charles Sykes/Invision for James Beard Foundation/AP Images)

The growth of food writing has evolved with the explosion of all the food-watching that accompanied programs like Top Chef and Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives, and we’re way past the days of Craig Claiborne or Ruth Reichl reveling about an up-and-coming chef in an out-of-the-way corner of a yet-to-be-gentrified-neighborhood somewhere.

The James Beard awards—otherwise known as the Oscars of food—were announced earlier this week, and befitting the honor’s nearly 30-year history, let’s toast sparkling rosé and caviar-topped amuse-bouches to the best food writing published in 2016 (here is the full list of winners).

Columns: “A Haitian Grandmother’s Home-Cooked Porridge“; “Kimchi Fried Rice, Korean Comfort Food“; “Casa Calamari” (Francis Lam, New York Times Magazine)

***

Dining and Travel: “I Want Crab. Pure Maryland Crab” (Bill Addison, Eater)

***

Food and Culture: “A Last Dinner in the Jungle” (Shane Mitchell, Roads & Kingdoms)

***

Food and Health: “Brain Food: A Food Renegade’s Last Stand” (Hunter Lewis, Carolyn Williams, Sidney Fry, and Peggy Knickerbocker, Cooking Light)

***

Food Coverage in a General Interest Publication: The New Yorker Food Issue (David Remnick, Lauren Collins, Dana Goodyear, and Carolyn Kormann, The New Yorker)

***

Food Reporting: “Exploited in Paradise” series (Martha Mendoza and Margie Mason, Associated Press)

***

Home Cooking: “How to Cook, Smoke, Crumble, Grind, Pickle, Candy, Milk, Slow Cook, Toast, Pulverize, and Fry a Nut” (Cheryl Slocum and Robin Bashinsky, Cooking Light)

***

Local Reporting: “Free Crabs!“; “A Significant Goodbye”; “Feeding the Prison System” (Hanna Raskin, The Post and Courier)

***

Personal Essay: “All I Want Are Some Potato Skins” (Keith Pandolfi, Serious Eats)

***

Profile: “Finding Pete Wells: A Search for America’s Most Dangerous Restaurant Critic” (Kevin Alexander, Thrillist)

***

Visual Storytelling: “Thrill Ride” (Vince Dixon and Mariya Pylayev, Eater)

***

Wine, Spirits, and Other Beverages: “The Great Craft Beer Sellout” (Dave Infante, Thrillist)

***

MFK Fisher Distinguished Writing Award:The Dog Thief Killings” (Calvin Godfrey, Roads & Kingdoms)

***

Craig Claiborne Distinguished Restaurant Review Award: “High Chairs and Hard Core“; “The X-Files“; “Beyond Biscuits and Gravy” (Karen Brooks, Portland Monthly)