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OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – An Oklahoma chef is being honored by a national organization for his culinary prowess.

Chef Andrew Black is nominated for the James Beard Award for Outstanding Chef.

Chef Black is the only nominee from Oklahoma who is up for the prestigious award.

Born in Jamaica, Chef Black was often tasked with building outdoor clay ovens for his grandmother as a child. He soon worked his way through the island’s resort kitchens.

However, he didn’t want to stop there.

He first came to Oklahoma City to reopen the restaurant in the historic Skirvin Hotel before moving on to open Vast.

In 2017, he became co-founder and executive chef for Culinary Edge Concepts, which consisted of La Baguette Deep Deuce, Black Walnut, and Grey Sweater.

Black’s restaurants in Oklahoma City have received numerous accolades from publications like USA Today, Zagat, and Thrillist.

“Chef helped bring tasting menus to Oklahoma City and one of his restaurants, Grey Sweater, has one of the most novel tasting menu concepts I’ve ever heard of. A few days before your reservation they give you a call, and then design your meal… Oklahoma City might have one of the most underrated, underreported, and underestimated restaurant cultures in America,” Thrillist posted.

He is also the author of the ‘Foraging in Oklahoma: Tales and Recipes from the Open Road.’

Black’s newest restaurant, The Gilded Acorn, is set to open soon.

Other nominees for the Outstanding Chef Award include:

  • Reem Assil of Reem’s in Oakland and San Francisco
  • Mashama Bailey of The Grey in Savannah, Georgia
  • Peter Chang, with two Peter Chang locations; Austin Covert of Rosewild in Fargo, North Dakota
  • Christopher Gross of Christopher’s in Phoenix, Arizona
  • Stephen Jones of The Larder + The Delta in Phoenix, Arizona
  • Ji Hye Kim of Miss Kim in Ann Arbor, Michigan
  • Kyle Knall of Birch in Milwaukee
  • Emiliano Marentes of ELEMI in El Paso, Texas
  • Niki Nakayama of n/naka in Los Angeles
  • Keiji Nakazawa of Sushi Sho in Honolulu, Hawaii
  • Josh Niernberg of Bin 707 Foodbar in Grand Junction, Colorado
  • Alex Raij and Eder Montero, La Vara of New York City
  • Angie Rito and Scott Tacinelli of Don Angie in New York
  • Michael Schwartz of Michael’s Genuine Food & Drink, Miami, Florida
  • Douglass Williams of MIDA in Boston
  • Cindy Wolf of Charleston in Baltimore, Maryland
  • Rachel Yang and Seif Chirchi of Joule in Seattle

Two other Oklahoma restaurants have recently caught the attention of the James Beard Awards.

Earlier this month, Living Kitchen Farm & Dairy in Depew was named a semifinalist for its most ‘outstanding restaurant’ in the U.S.

In Oklahoma City, Florence’s Restaurant was one of six recipients of the 2022 James Beard Foundation America’s Classics Award.