on James Beard Award win: "Overwhelming joy."
Alon Shaya, the chef and co-owner of Domenica, brought home a medal on Monday night (May 4) at the James Beard Award ceremonies in Chicago.
, who also co-owns and operates Pizza Domenica
and the recently opened Shaya
, won the award in the Best Chef South category.
"The immediate reaction is overwhelming joy," said Shaya
by phone on Tuesday morning after a night in Chicago that ended at 4 a.m.
has been nominated in the same category for the past three years.
won in a category that also featured Vishwesh Bhatt of Oxford, Miss., Jose Enrique of Puerto Rico and fellow New Orleans chefs Justin Devillier of La Petite Grocery and Slade Rushing of Brennan's.
Four other locals were nominated for James Beard Awards in categories that included Outstanding Chef and Outstanding Bar Program, but Shaya
was the only New Orleans winner.
, however, stressed that the award was a victory for both his
team and his
"It shows that New Orleans is at the top of its game," he
"That's not because of me. It's because of the entire city and everything that is on going here."
said the city's reputation is growing.
"When I travel," he
said, "and I'm talking about food, they're blown away by New Orleans."