In the Southeast region, Bailey beat out stiff competition from Matt Lackey of Flyte (who makes a heckuva vegetarian meal) in the voting, as well as Andrew Ticer and Michael Hudman of Hog and Hominy and Andrew Michael Italian Kitchen in Memphis (these guys may ring a bell), and seven other chefs. No small feat, particularly when you consider that other chefs in the running were pulling votes from the major restaurant hubs of Charleston and Atlanta (and, curiously, have been nominated before). The fact that Nashville had two representatives in the competition this year — and Tandy Wilson of City House and Erik Anderson and Josh Habiger of The Catbird Seat were nominated in 2011 and 2012, respectively — is a great testament to our city coming in to its own as a destination for dining.
The national winner was Brendan McGill of Hitchcock on Bainbridge Island, Wash., just outside Seattle. Congratulations to Chef Bailey, Chef McGill and all the regional winners and nominees!