‘Quite an honour’: McAllen restaurant owners Delgados up for prestigious award

LEFT: Chef Larry Delgado at Salomé on Thursday, Oct. 21, 2021 at McAllen. (Joel Martinez | [email protected]) RIGHT: Jessica Delgado (Courtesy of Salomé on Main)

The big news came to restaurant owners McAllen, Larry and Jessica Delgado on Wednesday, when the James Beard Foundation announced the nominees for this year’s James Beard Awards.

This is a prestigious award that seeks talent in various aspects of the culinary industry. Previous recipients of this award include Caroline Styne of Los Angeles-based band Lucques. She received the Outstanding Restaurateur award in 2018.

Larry had his own successes. In 2019, he competed and won against Bobby Flay on the popular Food Network show, Beat Bobby Flay.

After her win on the show, her restaurants gained more attention. He is currently the chef and owner of McAllen’s restaurants Accommodation. Wine. & Bistro., SALT – New American Tableand SALOME on Main.

Now Larry and Jessica have been nominated for the James Beard Awards in the Outstanding Restaurateur category.

“It’s a bit overwhelming, but it validates everything at the same time,” Larry said. “We have worked very hard to create restaurants that are all different from each other but with the same goal in mind: to create dining experiences at McAllen with a world-class ambiance. So getting this recognition from the James Beard Foundation is huge. I couldn’t be more excited.

Larry attributes his success and development not just as a person but as a leader to his wife, who encouraged him to keep striving to be better.

Although the names of the Delgados were the ones named, Larry said there were many who contributed to the restaurants’ success.

“They (the restaurant team) share the success alongside us and we couldn’t do anything without our team. We are proud to share this honor with them,” said Larry.

The announcement released by the James Beard Foundation on Wednesday listed a total of 20 semi-finalists in the Outstanding Restaurateur category.

On Friday, Larry candidly stated that he had looked at the list of semi-finalists and knew several of his fellow candidates.

“(I’m) very proud that our name is standing alongside some great restaurateurs,” said Larry, who when asked if he had any nerves ahead of the contest, added that “fear is not not the word – I’m just proud to be in the same category as these great chefs and restaurateurs.

The restaurant and chef award winners will be announced in June at the Lyric Opera in Chicago.

Larry said he and Jessica were thrilled to be nominated and it would be “quite an honour” if they were to be recognized with a James Beard Award.

About James Almanza

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