The James Beard Foundation Book Awards were established in 1966 as the R.T. French
Tastemaker Awards. When funding by R.T. French was discontinued, the awards were sponsored
by a number of organizations until they found a home as part of the James Beard Foundation
Awards in 1990.
Each year, the James Beard Foundation honors outstanding chefs, restaurants, and cookbooks
at a gala ceremony in New York City. The cookbook awards are given in a variety of
categories, ranging from "Baking and Desserts" to "Writing on Food."
An author, teacher, and food lover, the late James Beard is often hailed by his peers as
the Father of American Cuisine. His respect for America's culinary history and his
elevation of traditional American ingredients and recipes to the level of haute cuisine
were instrumental in shaping the country's culinary landscape and continue to influence
the professional community today.
The James Beard Foundation, based in Beard's Greenwich Village, New York, town house, is
committed to preserving America's culinary heritage and to fostering the appreciation of
food and cooking. The foundation furthers this ideal through scholarship and grant
programs, events at the Beard House, a quarterly publication, and an extensive library and
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