The poll results from the Independent Weekly’s Best of the Triangle were released this week and I immediately noticed that all the Best Chef awards went to women! (Coincidently, all their names start with A.) The rest of the finalists were men save for the husband and wife team at Magnolia Grill in Durham (now closed).
Ashley Christensen, Poole’s, Raleigh
Andrea Reusing, Lantern, Chapel Hill
Amy Tornquist, Watt’s Grocery, Durham
The culinary world is famously male-dominated but it seems the citizens of the Triangle are gender-blind! Here are some gender-related culinary statistics: in 2011, the James Beard Foundation nominated 96 chefs, 18 of them being women, up from 16 in 2009 (both Christensen and Reusing have been nominated); at the Culinary Institute of America, men outnumber women 7 to 3; of Michelin’s 106 3 star restaurants, there is one female chef.
Congratulations winners (and voters), this is a step in the right direction and a great achievement for women, the Triangle and the culinary world!