Maricel Presilla Joins the Who’s Who

The James Beard Foundation announced today that Maricel Presilla, chef/co-owner of Cucharamama and Zafra in Hoboken, will be inducted into the culinary organization's Who's Who of Food & Beverage in America.

The James Beard Foundation announced today that Maricel Presilla, chef/co-owner of Cucharamama and Zafra in Hoboken, and author of the magnum opus cookbook, Gran Cocina Latina, will be inducted in May into the culinary organization’s Who’s Who of Food & Beverage in America.

The Beard announcement noted that Presilla “is widely recognized as one of the nation’s pre-eminent experts on the cuisines of Latin America.”

Presilla made it to the semi-finals a few times before she won her first James Beard Award, Best Chef: Mid-Atlantifc, in 2012. The following year Gran Cocina Latina brought her a second Beard Award, for Cookbook of the Year. That year the International Association of Culinary Professionals named Gran Cocina Latinaits Best General Cookbook of 2013.

Presilla might soon earn a fourth honor from the Beard Foundation. She is a semifinalist for the 2015 Outstanding Chef award. The foundation will announce all its 2015 chef and restaurant winners at a gala in Chicago on May 4.

Four others will be inducted into the Who’s Who along with Presilla:

–Allan Benton, pork producer and purveyor, from Madisonville, Tennesse
–Dale DeGroff, famed mixologist from New York City
–Wylie Dufresne, New York City chef and pioneer of molecular gastronomy
–Nathalie Dupree, cookbook author from Charleston, SC, and host of the TV series Southern Cooking

The five honorees will bring the total inducted since the Who’s Who of Food & Beverage in America began in 1984 to 230.

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