Local chef, restaurateur, author and all around decent fellow Janos Wilder has been named a semifinalist in the Outstanding Chef category of this year's James Beard Foundation awards. Wilder has made this list many times in the past and the foundation named him the top chef in the Southwest back in 2000.
I've never met any other James Beard award winning type folks, but have spent a tiny bit of time with Wilder. Frankly, he's the man. Not only is he sort of an unofficial historian when it comes to various aspects of Southwestern cuisine, but his dedication to the community is consistent and impressive. Here's hoping he takes the award when the winners are announced later this year.