02/22/2012 05:00 pm ET Updated Feb 23, 2012

James Beard Awards 2012 Semifinalists Announced: Los Angeles Honored (PHOTOS)

The 2012 James Beard award semifinalists were just announced, and Los Angeles was honored many times over.

Among the well-established powerhouses, Patina, Lucques and Providence all have multiple nominations, while chefs Suzanne Goin and Nancy Silverton are both up for the "Outstanding Chef" award.

But it's the "Rising Star Chef" category that've got us excited. 5 out of the 31 new toque nominations are from the Los Angeles area. Up-and-coming restaurants Picca and MB Post have been nominated for "Best New Restaurant."

5 finalists in each category will be announced on March 15, and the winners on May 7 at the annual Awards Ceremony. That means you've still got a little more time to snag a table at the nominated restaurants; after the awards, it'll be near impossible.

Check out all of our local semifinalists in the slideshow below. And for a full list of semifinalists, check out the listing on

James Beard 2012