Voting in the 2013 edition of Food & Wine's online popularity contest—otherwise known as The People's Best New Chef®—begins today. You've got until March 18 to round up all of your buddies and vote for your favorite local cook and get them that coveted crown. The good news is that you have a lot of local chefs to vote for. 7 of the 10 chefs nominated in the Mid-Atlantic region are from Philly. The bad news is that having that many nominees will split up the Philly vote overall.
While there's no doubt The People's Best New Chef is strictly a popularity contest, there is definitely a connection between these nominees and the ones that end up winning the big-time Food & Wine Best New Chef Award. To wit: 9 of the 10 chefs that won Best New Chef last year were also on the People's List.
Without further ado, here are the nominees from Philly:
Jason Cichonski, Ela
Christopher Kearse, Will
Joshua Lawler, The Farm and Fisherman
Kevin Sbraga, Sbraga
Sylva Senat, Tashan
Lee Styer, Fond
Greg Vernick, Vernick Food & Drink
Currently, Kevin Sbraga is in the lead by a good percentage, and he's a solid bet to be both The People's Chef and Best New Chef. For the full list of People's Best New Chef, check out Eater National.