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Roundup BBQ restaurant, Billings pastry chef among nationwide award semifinalists



Billings, Montana – In the ongoing James Beard Awards competition, eight restaurants and chefs from the state of Montana have been selected as semifinalists, joining dozens of other candidates from across the country.

The Backporch BBQ restaurant in Roundup, which has landed a spot in the Best New Restaurant category, is one of the establishments that has been selected as a semifinalist.

“We have always believed in our vision, our team, and our town,” the restaurant said on its Facebook page. “We could not be more proud to announce that The Backporch has been selected as a semi-finalist for Best New Restaurant in the country by the James Beard Foundation. The James Beard Foundation Awards, are the food industry’s highest honor. Time magazine called them “the Oscars of the food world.”

“These are the moments we dream of. New restaurants open every single day and we are one of only 30 restaurants selected from Alaska to Florida. Roundup, I hope you are proud of this. It truly is your Backporch. You have built us and we are so proud and grateful for your support.”

“Welcome to Roundup, where the cowboys ride; and now home of the James Beard Semi-finalist restaurant The Backporch.”

Veronica Baukema, who owns a pastry shop in Billings and is located in Montana, is one of the people who made it onto the list of semifinalists in the state. She is competing in the Outstanding pastry Chef or Baker category. Veronika’s Pastry Shop can be found in the heart of downtown Billings under her management.

Chris Lockhart and Danny Mowatt, owners of PREROGATIvE Kitchen in Red Lodge, have likewise been given a spot as a semifinalist in the award program for this year. They are one of four chefs hailing from the state of Montana who have been selected as semifinalists for the competition in the Mountain Region.

And finally, the efforts that Albert McDonald has put in at the Pizza Campania and Backcountry Burger Bar in Bozeman, as well as at the Mint Cafe and Bar in Belgrade, have earned him a spot in the semi-finals for Outstanding Restauranteur.

The James Beard Foundation is “a nonprofit organization whose mission is to celebrate, support, and elevate the people behind America’s food culture and champion a standard of good food anchored in talent, equity, and sustainability,” according to its website.


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