Arizona chef, restaurants honored with James Beard nominations

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By Catherine Holland By Catherine Holland

PHOENIX -- Nominations for the James Beard Awards are out and a handful of Arizona chefs and restaurants are being recognized for their culinary excellence.

Nationally, Vincent on Camelback is up for outstanding restaurant, and Sam Fox has been nominated for outstanding restaurateur.  Fox is the head of Fox Restaurant Concepts, which includes Olive and Ivy, True Food Kitchen, Culinary Dropout, and Zinburger among others.  This year Fox Restaurant Concepts launched locations in Sky Harbor Airport, and has just opened a new location at "The Yard" on Seventh Street in Uptown Phoenix.

Two Valley chefs are also up for regional awards. Chef Kevin Binkley from Binkley's Restaurant in Cave Creek, and Chef Shinji Kurita from Shin-Bay in Scottsdale are among 20 nominated for Best Chef Southwest.  The awards will be handed out in May.

Chef Cullen Campbell from Crudo has also been tabbed to cook at the prestigious James Beard House on April 22 (corrected from video version).

The James Beard Foundation is a national not-for-profit 501(c)(3) organization based in New York City.  Their awards are considered "The Oscars" of the food world.