One chef from Philly is coming home with a medal from the 2018 James Beard Awards, known as the Oscars of the food world. Camille Cogswell, pastry chef at Zahav, was named the rising star chef of the year at the award ceremony, which took place May 7 at the Lyric Opera in Chicago.
This was the second nomination and first win for Cogswell, 27, who made it to the finals last year in the same category. The rising star award goes to a chef aged 30 or younger who, in the James Beard Foundation’s words, “displays an impressive talent and who is likely to make a significant impact on the industry in years to come.” Cogswell joined Zahav, the 10-year-old hit Israeli restaurant from Michael Solomonov and Steve Cook, in 2015.
Zahav was also up for the outstanding service award, but Zuni Café in San Fransisco took that one home.
Philly was in the running for two other awards on Monday. Ellen Yin of High Street on Market and Fork was nominated for outstanding restaurateur and Rich Landau of Vedge was nominated for best chef in the mid-Atlantic region. All three restaurants are on Eater Philly’s list of the 38 most essential.
We are so incredibly proud of you, Camille. Congratulations! https://t.co/AOsOfsP4Ra— Zahav (@zahavrestaurant) May 7, 2018
This wasn’t as big a year for Philly as 2017, when Solomonov (of Goldie, Federal Donuts, Dizengoff, Rooster Soup Co., and Abe Fisher, in addition to Zahav) took home the outstanding chef award. Stephen Starr was honored twice last year, for restaurateur of the year and best new restaurant (for New York City’s Le Coucou), and Greg Vernick of Vernick Food & Drink was named best chef in the mid-Atlantic region.
See the full list of 2018 James Beard Awards winners here.