Mike Mastro and Jeff Mastro of Prime Steak Concepts in Scottsdale, AZ, are James Beard Award semifinalists in the category of Outstanding Restaurateur for their restaurants Dominick’s Steakhouse, Steak 44, and Ocean 44. This prestigious honor is bestowed only to the most reputable, eclectic, and diverse restaurants in the United States.
Though last year’s focus was on diversity in gender and race, this year spreads that variety to geography, ensuring categories in every region of the country to best highlight the most dedicated chefs, sommeliers, and restauranteurs nationwide. With the California, Texas, and New York restaurant scenes being as saturated as they are, this year, they’ve finally been awarded their own categories to stand apart from the rest of the country. But the one we’re most interested in? Our very own desert state, nestled into the Southwest category: Arizona.
Mastro’s Prime Steak Concepts were already our favorite restaurants in the valley, but we’re paying extra close attention now. You’re guaranteed an unparalleled dining experience whenever you visit Dominick’s Steakhouse, Steak 44, or Ocean 44, each known for their upscale decor and modern touches, followed up by impeccable service. Complete with extensive and aromatic wine, scotch, whiskey, bourbon, and tequila lists, there are endless combination pairings you can savor when you dine in. Of course, the main dishes highlighted at these restaurants include prime-grade beef cooked to perfection, as well as the freshest seafood Arizona can offer. The final touch? A dessert menu that makes you wish you’d saved more room.
All James Beard Award Semifinalists in Arizona:
- Vecina, Phoenix for Best New Restaurant
- Don Guerra, Barrio Bread, Tucson, AZ for Outstanding Baker
- Little Rituals, Phoenix for Outstanding Bar Program
- Nobuo Fukuda, Nobuo at Teeter House, Phoenix for Outstanding Chef
- Mi Nidito Restaurant, Tucson, AZ for Outstanding Hospitality
- Kai, Phoenix for Outstanding Hospitality
- Country Velador, Super Chunk Sweets & Treats, Scottsdale, AZ for Outstanding Pastry Chef
- Pizzeria Bianco, Phoenix for Outstanding Restaurant
- Mike Mastro and Jeff Mastro, Prime Steak Concepts, Scottsdale, AZ (Dominick’s Steakhouse, Steak 44, Ocean 44) for Outstanding Restauranteur
- FnB, Scottsdale, AZ for Outstanding Wine Program
- Stephen Paul, Hamilton Distillers, Tucson, AZ for Outstanding Wine, Beer or Spirits Producer
- Cassie Shortino, Tratto, Phoenix for Rising Star Chef of the Year
- Stephen Jones, The Larder + The Delta, Phoenix for Best Chef: Southwest (AZ, NM, NV, OK)
- Bernie Kantak, Citizen Public House, Scottsdale, AZ for Best Chef: Southwest (AZ, NM, NV, OK)
- Shinji Kurita, Shinbay Omakase Room, Scottsdale, AZ for Best Chef: Southwest (AZ, NM, NV, OK)
- Danielle Leoni, The Breadfruit & Rum Bar, Phoenix for Best Chef: Southwest (AZ, NM, NV, OK)
- Maria Mazon, BOCA Tacos y Tequila, Tucson, AZ for Best Chef: Southwest (AZ, NM, NV, OK)
- Chrysa Robertson, Rancho Pinot, Scottsdale, AZ for Best Chef: Southwest (AZ, NM, NV, OK)
- Silvana Salcido Esparza, Barrio Café Gran Reserva, Phoenix for Best Chef: Southwest (AZ, NM, NV, OK)
- Samantha Sanz, Talavera, Scottsdale, AZ for Best Chef: Southwest (AZ, NM, NV, OK)
- Jeff Smedstad, Elote Cafe, Sedona, AZ for Best Chef: Southwest (AZ, NM, NV, OK)
- Ryan Swanson, Kai, Gila River Indian Community, Chandler, AZ for Best Chef: Southwest (AZ, NM, NV, OK)
See the complete list of James Beard Award semifinalists nationwide online. After judges have ripped this extensive list to shreds, the finalists will drop to five nominees per category, which will be announced on Wednesday, March 25. The James Beard Awards are taking place in Chicago this year, where winners will be announced on May 4.
The complete list of 2020 James Beard Award categories include Best New Restaurant, Outstanding Baker, Outstanding Bar Program, Outstanding Chef, Outstanding Hospitality, Outstanding Pastry Chef, Outstanding Restaurant, Outstanding Restaurateur, Outstanding Wine Program, Outstanding Wine, Beer or Spirits Producer, Rising Star Chef of the Year, Best Chef: California, Best Chef: Great Lakes (IL, IN, MI, OH), Best Chef: Mid-Atlantic (D.C., DE, MD, NJ, PA, VA), Best Chef: Midwest (IA, KS, MN, MO, NE, ND, SD, WI), Best Chef: Mountain (CO, ID, MT, UT, WY), Best Chef: New York State, Best Chef: Northeast (CT, MA, ME, NH, RI, VT), Best Chef: Northwest & Pacific (AK, HI, OR, WA), Best Chef: South (AL, AR, Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, FL, LA, MS), Best Chef: Southeast (GA, KY, NC, SC, TN, WV), Best Chef: Southwest (AZ, NM, NV, OK), and Best Chef: Texas.
Featured Image Credit: Dominick’s Steakhouse