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December 12, 2017

Arkansas starts Food Hall of Fame


The Arkansas Heritage Department has announced creation of an Arkansas Food Hall of Fame.

A spring ceremony will induct restaurants (they must be at least 25 years old) and honor a proprietor or chef of the year, a top food-themed event and a “people’s choice” restaurant/food truck award winner. Winners must be Arkansas-owned and national chains are excluded.

A committee will choose winners, except for the people’s choice. 

More information at this website, as well as a nomination form. The deadline for nominations is Nov. 9.

Note to Heritage Department Director Stacy Hurst: You should add a media category and choose Arkansas Times publisher Alan Leveritt by acclamation for the first award. He started the state’s first serious, systematic effort to review restaurants more than 40 years ago (long before I got here). That included an annual statewide awards competition that continues to this day. Coverage of food, from farm to table, has always been an important part of the emphasis of the Arkansas Times from its 18 years as a magazine to its 24 years as a weekly newspaper. What’s more, he started Arkansas Food and Farm, a magazine devoted to home-grown and expertly-cooked food. And what’s still more, he’s a  food producer himself. His world-class heirloom tomatoes are the centerpiece in season at several of the state’s best restaurants and he’s added lamb to the artisanal products he nurtures on his farm in northern Pulaski County.  What’s still more, the nominating committee includes Kat Robinson, whose burgeoning career as a food blogger/author was propelled by contributions to the Arkansas Times.

I can’t see any possible disqualification. Well except maybe the politics of some of his employees.

As for restaurants: Start with Trio’s, Franke’s and Sims.

Where to begin? Chicken enchiladas, Peck Special Salad, peanut butter pie, eggplant casserole, Karo nut pie, ribs, slaw and a cold 40.

The Arkansas Heritage Department has announced creation of an Arkansas Food Hall of Fame.

A spring ceremony will induct restaurants (they must be at least 25 years old) and honor a proprietor or chef of the year, a top food-themed event and a “people’s choice” restaurant/food truck award winner. Winners must be Arkansas-owned and national chains are excluded.

A committee will choose winners, except for the people’s choice. 

More information at this website, as well as a nomination form. The deadline for nominations is Nov. 9.

Note to Heritage Department Director Stacy Hurst: You should add a media category and choose Arkansas Times publisher Alan Leveritt by acclamation for the first award. He started the state’s first serious, systematic effort to review restaurants more than 40 years ago (long before I got here). That included an annual statewide awards competition that continues to this day. Coverage of food, from farm to table, has always been an important part of the emphasis of the Arkansas Times from its 18 years as a magazine to its 24 years as a weekly newspaper. What’s more, he started Arkansas Food and Farm, a magazine devoted to home-grown and expertly-cooked food. And what’s still more, he’s a  food producer himself. His world-class heirloom tomatoes are the centerpiece in season at several of the state’s best restaurants and he’s added lamb to the artisanal products he nurtures on his farm in northern Pulaski County.  What’s still more, the nominating committee includes Kat Robinson, whose burgeoning career as a food blogger/author was propelled by contributions to the Arkansas Times.

I can’t see any possible disqualification. Well except maybe the politics of some of his employees.

As for restaurants: Start with Trio’s, Franke’s and Sims.

Where to begin? Chicken enchiladas, Peck Special Salad, peanut butter pie, eggplant casserole, Karo nut pie, ribs, slaw and a cold 40.

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