The James Beard Foundation announced its 2016 nominees this morning in San Francisco, and five Minnesotans are in the running.

The highly coveted awards, the so-called "Oscars of the food world," recognize and celebrate excellence among chefs, restaurants, cookbooks, food media and design.

Paul Berglund of the Bachelor Farmer and Lenny Russo of Heartland Restaurant & Wine Bar received nominations for Best Chef: Midwest. This is Berglund's third nomination, and Russo's sixth.

The award -- it's one of the Beard's 10 regional chef honors -- goes to "Chefs who have set new or consistent standards of excellence in their respective regions. Eligible candidates may be from any kind of dining establishment and must have been working as a chef for at least five years with the three most recent years spent in the region."

The Midwest region includes Minnesota, Wisconsin, Iowa, Missouri, North Dakota, South Dakota, Nebraska and Kansas. Other Best Chef: Midwest nominees include Justin Carlisle of Ardent in Milwaukee, Kevin Nashan of Sidney Street Cafe in St. Louis and Kevin Willmann at Farmhaus in St. Louis.

Three Twin Cities writers and broadcasters also received nominations in the foundation's media awards.

Cookbook author Raghavan Iyer was nominated in the Video Webcast in a Fixed Location and/or Instructional category for his “Indian Curries: The Basics & Beyond.”

Andrew Zimmern of the Travel Channel’s “Bizarre Foods” received two nominations: in the Outstanding Personality or Host on Television or Webcast category, and the Individual and Group Food Blog category.

Dara Moskowitz Grumdahl of Mpls.St.Paul magazine was nominated in the Craig Claiborne Distinguished Restaurant Review category.

Find the complete list of winners here.

Winners in the foundation’s cookbook, journalism, broadcast and design awards will be announced at a dinner in New York City on April 26. Winners in the restaurant and chef categories will be handed the Beard medallion at a gala awards ceremony being held on May 2 at Chicago’s Civic Opera House and will be hosted by Carla Hall of ABC TV’s “The Chew.”

Congratulations to the nominees.

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