Monday, March 11, 2013 , Updated 10:50 a.m., March 19, 2013
UPDATED: Dallas chef Matt McCallister snags Food & Wine‘s best new chef in southwest
FT33 was one of the most anticipated restaurant openings of 2012.
UPDATE: Matt McCallister, of Dallas Design District restaurant FT33, won an online vote from Food & Wine, declaring him best new chef in the southwest.
He was not the overall winner, however; that went to Brendan McGill of restaurant Hitchcock in Bainbridge Island, Washington.
McCallister won the vote against 9 other chefs in the southwest region, including fellow Dallas chef Omar Flores, of Driftwood in Oak Cliff. The contest then pitted the winners of each of 10 regions against one another, which is how McGill won the title.
Regional winners are:
- California: Matthew Accarrino, of SPQR
- Great Lakes: Josh Adams, of June in Peoria Heights, Illinois
- Gulf Coast: José Santaella, of Santaella in San Juan, Puerto Rico
- Mid-Atlantic: Cedric Maupillier, of Mintwood Place in Washington, D.C.
- Midwest: Carl Thorne-Thomsen, of Story in Prairie Village, Kansas
- New England: Andrew Taylor & Mike Wiley, of Eventide Oyster Co. in Portland, Maine
- New York area: Dale Talde, of Talde in Brooklyn, New York
- Northwest and Pacific: Brendan McGill, of Hitckcock in Bainbridge Island, Washington
- Southeast: Roderick Bailey, of The Silly Goose in Nashville, Tennessee
- Southwest: Matt McCallister, of FT33 in Dallas
Original story: Dallas Design District chef Matt McCallister and Oak Cliff chef Omar Flores are two of 100 finalists in Food & Wine's "The People's Best New Chef" award. Both of their restaurant debuts were considered some of the most important of 2012 in Dallas.
McCallister opened his New American restaurant FT33 in October 2012, and about two months later, Dallas Morning News critic Leslie Brenner deemed it "a thrilling restaurant — dynamic, exciting, unpredictable and delightful." McCallister trained in Dallas' Stephan Pyles. FT33 is his first restaurant.
Flores' Driftwood opened next to Bolsa Mercado in Oak Cliff in April 2012. The gourmet seafood restaurant has been praised for making beautiful, thoughtful fish dishes, including killer crudo and an affordable lobster roll. Flores formerly worked at Abacus.
The online vote for The People's Best New Chef begins Monday, March 11 and runs through Monday, March 18. The award pits 10 chefs in 10 regions against one another. Each region will have one finalist, and the chef with the most votes in the end will receive the coveted title on March 19.
McCallister and Flores join 8 other chefs in the Southwest category: 1 from Tucson, Arizona; 1 from Denver; 2 from Austin; and -- whew! -- 4 from Houston.
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