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The South Florida Dining Awards, produced by New Times and presented by Macy's, took place at The South Beach Wine & Food Festival immediately following Sunday's Grand tasting. The ceremony was emceed by WSVN Belkys Nerey and the voters were a team of media professionals throughout the region, including: Suzy Buckley, people editor, Ocean Drive; Viviana Carballo, freelance food writer; Simone Diament, publisher/editor, The South Florida Gourmet; Susan Friedman, food editor, Boca Raton Magazine; Lee Klein, restaurant critic, Miami New Times; Irene Moore, WHERE Miami; Judith Stocks, restaurant critic, Sun-Sentinel; and Todd Wernstrom, editor, The Wine News.

AND…. THE 2005 WINNERS FOR THE SOUTH FLORIDA DINING AWARDS ARE:

TOP NEIGHBORHOOD RESTAURANTS MIAMI-DADE -- WINNER First prize: North One 10, North Miami, Second prize: Café Ragazzi, Surfside; Carmen the Restaurant (at the David William Hotel), Coral Gables; Norman's, Coral Gables, and Third prize: Bugatti, Coral Gables; Mosaico, Miami

TOP NEIGHBORHOOD RESTAURANTS BROWARD - WINNERS First: Sublime, Fort Lauderdale; Second: Johnny V, Fort Lauderdale; Sunfish Grill, Pompano Beach; and Third prize: 3030 Ocean (at Marriott's Harbor Beach Resort & Spa), Fort Lauderdale

TOP NEIGHBORHOOD RESTAURANTS PALM BEACH - WINNERS L'Escalier (at The Breakers), Palm Beach; Café Boulud (at the Brazilian Court), Palm Beach; Amici Bar Ristorante, Palm Beach; 32 East, Delray Beach

SUPERIOR WINE PROGRAM - WINNERS L'Escalier (at The Breakers), Palm Beach; Palme d'Or (at The Biltmore Hotel), Coral Gables; Captain's Tavern, South Miami; Emeril's (at the Loews Hotel), Miami Beach; Two Chefs, South Miami.

DISTINGUISHED NEWCOMER 2004 - WINNERS Mosaico, Miami; North One 10, North Miami; and Johnny V, Fort Lauderdale.

EXCEPTIONAL VALUE - WINNERS Tropical Chinese Restaurant, Westchester; Lan, South Miami; and Cafe Sambal (at the Mandarin Oriental), Brickell Key

MOST ORIGINAL - WINNERS Chispa, Coral Gables; Barton G. the Restaurant, Miami Beach; Pacific Time, Miami Beach

FINEST OVERALL - WINNERS Norman's, Coral Gables; Nobu, Miami Beach; Palme d'Or, (The Biltmore Hotel), Coral Gables; L'Escalier (at The Breakers), Palm Beach

OUTSTANDING CHEF - WINNERS Jonathan Eismann, Pacific Time, Miami Beach; Jordi Vallès, Mosaico, Miami; Philippe Ruiz, Palme d'Or (at The Biltmore Hotel), Coral Gables; Tony Sindaco, Sunfish Grill, Pompano Beach; Norman Van Aken, Norman's and Mundo, Coral Gables

LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT - WINNERS Jonathan Eismann, Pacific Time, Miami Beach; Norman Van Aken, Norman's and Mundo, Coral Gables; Allen Susser, Chef Allen's, Aventura

APPLICATIONS OPEN FOR NEW ACADEMIC YEAR AT THE UNIVERSITY OF GASTRONOMIC SCIENCES (Universtà di Scienze Gastronomiche, Italy)
The University of Gastronomic Sciences has opened up the application process for its three-year training degree starting in 2005. Last year saw 70 students from 10 different countries begin the program. "We are happy to be able to reopen the application process to students from all over the world," commented Carlo Petrini, president of Slow Food and the Association of Friends of the University of Gastronomic Sciences, "a sign that our project has hit the mark, tapping into the demand for a new, international gastronomic education at a high level."
"Our undertaking is to bring to light a new approach to gastronomy strictly linked to the culinary traditions and the typical production techniques of many countries around the world," maintains Alberto Capatti, scientific coordinator of the University.
Application is free and open to all those interested, both Italians and non-Italians, who have a high school diploma or equivalent qualification. The first phase is free and can be accessed through the University's website, http://www.unisg.it

JAMES BEARD FOUNDATION SELECTS NEW INTERIM EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
The James Beard Foundation has selected Edna Morris as the Foundation's Interim Executive Director. She is hailed by her colleagues as "a true collaborator, she really understands what the Foundation is all about, and moreover, has a tremendous amount of passion for this cause," according to Charlie Trotter, and by Patricia Dailey, Editor in Chief of Restaurants & Institutions Magazine as "a brilliant choice to lead the James Beard Foundation who will rebuild confidence and respect and help create a strategy that allows it to succeed as originally intended." "She will bring instant credibility, competence and presence to an institution that needs and deserves healing and superior leadership," said Danny Meyer, Chief Executive Officer of Union Square Hospitality Group.
Ms. Morris has been a leader in the foodservice industry for 25 years, serving in executive management positions, founding industry-building associations and supporting culinary education. Most recently, Ms. Morris served as President of Red Lobster, a $2.3 billion seafood restaurant company. She was President of Quincy's Family Steakhouse and led the development of a chef-driven restaurant prototype. Ms. Morris is the founding President of the Women's Foodservice Forum and serves on the Board of the Culinary Institute of America. She also serves on the boards of Tractor Supply and Cosi, both publicly traded companies. As the Interim Executive Director, Ms. Morris will be responsible for all aspects of the Foundation's operations including leadership of the James Beard Foundation staff and initiatives, development of a Foundation code of ethics, corporate and community outreach, and management of the James Beard Foundation Awards and Scholarships programs. She will work with the Board to find a permanent Executive Director.

To submit information and tips for this column, please e-mail to: editor@southfloridagourmet.com
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