Washington, DC (June 25, 2012) – More than 1,500 guests gathered tonight at the Restaurant Association Metropolitan Washington‘s (RAMW) highly anticipated annual RAMMY Awards gala to celebrate the outstanding achievements and excellence in the Metropolitan Washington restaurant industry. Host venue, the Marriott Wardman Park Hotel, saw chefs, restaurateurs and key restaurant industry players awarded prestigious honors including “Fine Dining Restaurant,” “Upscale Casual Restaurant” and “Restaurant Employee of the Year.”
One of the most coveted awards of the evening was taken home by Vikram Sunderam, Executive Chef at Rasika, who was named Chef of the Year. Fiola was named Best New Restaurant while Bourbon Steak took home Fine Dining Restaurant of the Year. This year offered a new category, Casual Restaurant of the Year, which was awarded to Mitsitam Native Foods Café located within the Smithsonian’s National Museum of the American Indian.
Jeff and Barbara Black, owners of the ever-expanding Black Restaurant Group, were named Restaurateurs of the Year, while two of their restaurants took home top honors – BlackSalt Fish Market & Restaurant was named Upscale Casual Restaurant of the Year and Black Jack, the popular bar atop their newest venture earned the title of Hottest Restaurant Bar Scene.
The Honorary Milestone RAMMY was awarded to the Tune Inn this year in recognition of 65 years in business and three generations of the same family as owners. Opened in 1947 by Joe Nardelli, the Tune Inn is going strong on Capitol Hill with Joe’s granddaughter, Lisa, at the helm.
Announced in April, RAMW awarded the Duke Zeibert Capital Achievement Award to former District of Columbia Mayor, Anthony A. Williams for his impact on the citizens and business community, particularly the restaurant industry, of Washington, DC.
The prestigious RAMMY Awards were presented during a theatre-style seated ceremony which preceded an evening of dinner, dancing and celebration. Food and beverage pavilions served gourmet delicacies provided by Australia, Cuisine Solutions, Spain, Virginia along with the reception sponsored by Chile.
The 2012 RAMMY Award Winners:
- FINE DINING RESTAURANT, Bourbon Steak
- UPSCALE CASUAL RESTAURANT, BlackSalt Fish Market & Restaurant
- NEW RESTAURANT, Fiola
- CASUAL RESTAURANT, Mitsitam Native Foods Café
- CHEF, Vikram Sunderam – Rasika
- RESTAURATEUR, Jeff & Barbara Black – Black Restaurant Group
- PASTRY CHEF, Fabrice Bendano – Adour
- RISING CULINARY STAR, Ed Witt – 701 Restaurant
- RESTAURANT MANAGER, Reagan Corbett – Jackson 20
- RESTAURANT EMPLOYEE, José Alex Medrano – B. Smith’s
- WINE PROGRAM, Cork Wine Bar
- BEVERAGE/MIXOLOGY PROGRAM, Estadio
- JOAN HISAOKA ASSOCIATE MEMBER, Adams-Burch
- DUKE ZEIBERT CAPITAL ACHIEVEMENT AWARD, Anthony A. Williams
- HONORARY MILESTONE, The Tune Inn
- NEIGHBORHOOD GATHERING PLACE, Café Saint-Ex
- HOTTEST RESTAURANT BAR SCENE, Black Jack
- POWER SPOT, Founding Farmers – DC
- WHERE MAGAZINE VISITORS’ CHOICE AWARD, McCormick & Schmick’s
More photos on the The Washington Lobbyist Facebook Album. http://on.fb.me/rammysalbum