Filipino-American Tom Cunanan is ‘Best Chef’ at James Beard Awards 2019
Filipino-American Tom Cunanan is ‘Best Chef’ at James Beard Awards 2019
Tom bags the prestigious 'Best Chef: Mid-Atlantic' title for his modern Filipino restaurant, Bad Saint, located in Washington DC

MANILA, Philippines – The winners for this year’s James Beard Awards are in, and Filipino-American chef Tom Cunanan is one of the lucky few.


The prestigious title of “Best Chef: Mid-Atlantic” was given to Tom for his Filipino-inspired restaurant Bad Saint, located in Washington DC.




The 3-time Best Chef nominee finally bested other chefs in the United States vying for the same title. “Never in my wildest dreams did I think I’d be up here,” Tom said during his acceptance speech, according to the Washingtonian. 

Tom, who was born in Olangapo City, Philippines, moved to the United States when he was 3 years old. He worked his way up the culinary ladder, working first at DC kitchens Vidalia and Ardeo Bardeo before opening his own restaurant in 2015. Bad Saint also bagged the “Best New Restaurant” in America title from magazine Bon Appetit in 2016.

Fellow Filipino Nicole Ponseca was also nominated for her cookbook, I Am a Filipino. (READ: Filipino restaurateur Nicole Ponseca nominated for James Beard Awards 2019)

The James Beard Awards are considered one of the highest honors given in the American culinary and hospitality world. –

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