The James Beard Foundation has released the list of nominees for its 2012 awards, and New Orleans is well represented across the roster. This year, 12 local chefs, restaurants and bars are in the running for James Beard Awards, an honor that TIME Magazine has dubbed “the Oscars of the food world.”

Brett Anderson, restaurant writer for the Times-Picayune, sits on the foundation’s 17-member Restaurant and Chef Awards Committee.

By category, these local nominees include:

Outstanding Bar Program

French 75 at Arnaud's Restaurant

and

Cure

Outstanding Restaurant

Restaurant August

Outstanding Chef

Donald Link of Herbsaint, Cochon, Cochon Butcher and Calcasieu

Outstanding Service

Brigtsen’s Restaurant

and

Clancy’s Restaurant

Outstanding Wine Program

Emeril’s Restaurant

Rising Star Chef of the Year

Sue Zemanick, of Gautreau’s Restaurant

This is the fourth consecutive year Zamanick has been nominated for this award.

Best Chef: South

Justin Devillier of La Petit Grocery

and

John Harris of Lilette

and

Tory McPhail of Commander’s Palace

and

Alon Shaya of Domenica

In addition, Justin Girouard of the French Press in Lafayette, was nominated for this award.

The list of nominees will be whittled down and finalists will be announced at a Las Vegas event on March 19.

Award winners will be named on May 7 at an event in New York. Congratulations to all our local nominees.