Bern's is Florida's only finalist for 2015 James Beard awards

March 24, 2015 6:29 PM

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On Tuesday, the James Beard Foundation announced this year's finalists for its annual culinary awards, commonly referred to as the Academy Awards of food. In the entire state of Florida, only one restaurant made the cut: Bern's Steak House, the nearly 60-year-old Tampa legend, was named a finalist in the Outstanding Wine Program category. With what is said to be the largest restaurant wine list in the country, Bern's will face competition in the category with two restaurants in Charleston, S.C. (FIG and McCrady's), and two in California (A16 in San Francisco and Spago in Beverly Hills).

Owner David Laxer credits his wine team — Brad Dixon, Eric Renaud and Josh Michael Shields — but is resolute that much of the honor goes to his father, restaurant founder Bern Laxer, who died in 2002.

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