It’s her second James Beard Award!
Chef Mashama Bailey has won the 2022 James Beard Award for outstanding chef, Savannah Now reports.
Bailey is an executive chef and managing partner of the popular restaurant The Grey, an eatery she runs with friend Johno Morisano that serves southern dishes inspired by recipes and techniques from Bailey’s matriarchs in a formerly segregated and restored Greyhound bus terminal. The two opened the establishment in 2014 and it has grown wildly popular, a staple in the Savannah restaurant scene.
In 2018, Bailey made history as the first woman, African American chef to be nominated for the James Beard Award in the best chef category in the history of the award. In 2019, she won the James Beard Award for best chef in the Southeast. Now Bailey is a two-time champion, recently winning the prestigious award again, this time for Outstanding Chef.
“Today, a little Black boy or a little Black girl can see themselves as a future outstanding chef. They can see themselves in a space that they have never seen before and do what they can not think is possible. And until just a few minutes ago, that was me,” Bailey said during her acceptance speech at the ceremony.
Just this past April, Bailey and Morisano opened two new restaurants in Austin, Texas inspired by The Grey and The Grey Market in Savannah. The Diner Bar and The Grey Market Austin are already go-to spots for the locals and tourists alike.
Congratulations, Mashama! Because of you, we can!
Photo Courtesy Jeff Schear/Getty Images for James Beard Foundation