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Meet the People's Best New Chef

The People's Best New Chef 2014 Winners

At F&W, we name America’s 10 most brilliant up-and-coming chefs every year. Now we want to know who you think is the most talented new chef in America.

After tallying thousands of your votes, we're proud to introduce the winner of our 2014 online competition. Meet the People's Best New Chef 2014 and the incredible regional winners around the country.

The People's Best New Chef 2014 / Midwest Winner
Carl Thorne-Thomsen
People's Best New Chef Winner

Photo © Matt Kocourek

Carl Thorne-Thomsen

Restaurant: Story (Read a review)

Location: Prairie Village, KS

Why He's Amazing: Because he's turning out incredible European-inspired dishes in a shopping center in suburban Kansas.

Culinary School: Self-taught

Background: 40 Sardines (Overland Park, KS); Michael Smith Restaurant, Extra Virgin (Kansas City, MO)


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The Regional Winners
Ori Menashe
People's Best New Chef Winner

Photo © Andrea Bricco

Ori Menashe

Restaurant: Bestia (Read a review)

Location: Los Angeles

Why He's Amazing: Because he's a meat virtuoso: Bestia's menu offers more than 60 forms of sensational house-made charcuterie, in addition to impeccable pastas and pizza.

Culinary School: Self-taught

Background: Angelini Osteria, All'Angelo, Pizzeria Mozza, La Terza (Los Angeles)


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Chris Hodgson
People's Best New Chef Winner

Photo courtesy of Hodge's

Chris Hodgson

Restaurant: Hodge's (Read a review)

Location: Cleveland

Why He's Amazing: Because he pioneered Cleveland's acclaimed food-truck scene with his quirky takes on American comfort food, now featured at this brick-and-mortar spot.

Culinary School: Le Cordon Bleu Scottsdale (Scottsdale, AZ)

Background: Christopher's Crush (Phoenix), The Spotted Pig (New York), Dim and Den Sum Truck (Cleveland)


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Cory Bahr
People's Best New Chef Winner

Photo courtesy of Restaurant Cotton

Cory Bahr

Restaurant: Cotton (Read a review)

Location: Monroe, LA

Why He's Amazing: Because he's sourcing the best ingredients—from cornmeal and sweet potatoes to rabbits, venison and duck eggs—from friends and neighbors for his updated and spectacular Southern dishes.

Culinary School: Self-taught

Background: Sage (Monroe, LA); internships at Commander's Palace and Dickie Brennan's Steakhouse (New Orleans)


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Danny Amend
People's Best New Chef Winner

Photo excerpted from FRANNY'S by Andrew Feinberg, Francine Stephens, and Melissa Clark (Artisan Books). Copyright (c) 2013. Photographs by John von Pamer.

Danny Amend

Restaurant: Marco's (Read a review)

Location: Brooklyn

Why He's Amazing: Because his stellar cooking résumé is quietly present in his super-delicious, unfussy, homespun Italian dishes.

Culinary School: The Culinary Institute of America (Hyde Park, NY)

Background: Franny's (Brooklyn); Per Se, Alain Ducasse at the Essex House (New York City)


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Matthew MacCartney
People's Best New Chef Winner

Photo courtesy of Jamestown FiSH

Matthew MacCartney

Restaurant: Jamestown Fish (Read a review)

Location: Jamestown, RI

Why He's Amazing: Because his fish-centric dishes take cues from classic French, Italian and American-immigrant cooking but they taste innovative and modern.

Culinary School: New York City College of Technology

Background: Colicchio & Sons, Craft, Gramercy Tavern, Daniel (New York City), Pasta Nostra (Norwalk, CT)


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Justin Severino
People's Best New Chef Winner

Photo © Adam Milliron

Justin Severino

Restaurant: Cure (Read a review)

Location: Pittsburgh

Why He's Amazing: Because he closed a successful butcher shop in California to open a meat-centric restaurant in Pittsburgh where he butchers and cures everything himself and educates eaters about the provenance of their food.

Culinary School: Pennsylvania Culinary Institute (Pittsburgh)

Background: Elements, Eleven (Pittsburgh); Manresa (Los Gatos, CA); Bouchée Restaurant and Wine Bar (Carmel-by-the-Sea, CA)


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Kim Floresca & Daniel Ryan
People's Best New Chef Winner

Photo © Kim Floresca

Kim Floresca & Daniel Ryan

Restaurant: [ONE] (Read a review)

Location: Chapel Hill, NC

Why They're Amazing: Because after working together in some of the world's most acclaimed kitchens, they're cooking up sublimely inventive food—like wild onion madeleines and savory pumpernickel macarons—at their very own spot.

Culinary School: Floresca: Golden Gate University (Roseville, CA); Ryan: Baltimore International College

Background: Both: Internships at El Bulli (Roses, Spain) and Mugaritz (San Sebastián, Spain); The Restaurant at Meadowood (St. Helena, CA); Floresca: Per Se (New York City); Tru (Chicago); Ryan: Adour, Eleven Madison Park (New York City); Alinea (Chicago)


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Steven Redzikowski
People's Best New Chef Winner

Photo © Justin Lee

Steven Redzikowski

Restaurant: Oak at Fourteenth, Acorn (Read a review)

Location: Boulder, CO; Denver

Why He's Amazing: Because after starting his career at Le Cirque at age 21, he's raising the bar on the Colorado food scene with his two seasonally focused restaurants—one centered around a unique oak-fired oven and grill (Oak), the other a super-hip shared-plates spot (Acorn).

Culinary School: Schenectady County Community College (Schenectady, NY)

Background: Little Nell (Aspen, CO); Cyrus (Healdsburg, CA); Frasca Food & Wine (Boulder); Jean-Georges, Le Cirque (New York City)


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Sheldon Simeon
People's Best New Chef Winner

Photo courtesy of Star Noodle

Sheldon Simeon

Restaurant: Migrant (Read a review)

Location: Kihei, HI

Why He's Amazing: Because he's meshing his Hawaiian background with local produce and Asian techniques at this no-frills Filipino gastropub.

Culinary School: Maui Culinary Academy (Kahului, HI)

Background: Star Noodle, Aloha Mixed Plate, Old Lahaina Luau (Lahaina, HI)


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