Best in DC food: 2020 RAMMY winners

Restaurant Association Metropolitan Washington has announced the winners of this year’s RAMMY Awards, celebrating the region’s best restaurants, chefs and dining experiences.

The annual awards ceremony — held virtually for the first time Sunday evening due to the coronavirus pandemic — bestows honors in 20 award categories to D.C. region restaurant and food service community, ranging from upscale brunch to cocktail program of the year.

“Our industry, and all of us, need things to look forward to and to give us some semblance of joy and hope in our lives,” RAMW president Kathy Hollinger said in August, moving forward with local awards after the James Beard Foundation decided to forgo its national honors this season.

Members of the public decided on winners in the Favorite Gathering Place, Upscale Brunch, Casual Brunch and Favorite Fast Bites, with the rest fallen to a an anonymous panel of volunteer judges including food journalists, educators and industry professionals.

The winners of the 38th annual RAMMY Awards are:

  • Upscale Brunch of the Year: Trummer’s
  • Casual Brunch of the Year: All-Purpose – Shaw
  • Favorite Gathering Place of the Year: The Salt Line
  • Favorite Fast Bites of the Year: Shouk
  • Service Program of the Year: St. Anselm
  • Beer Program of the Year: Roofers Union
  • Cocktail Program of the Year: Royal
  • Wine Program of the Year: Field & Main
  • Casual Restaurant of the Year: CHIKO – Capitol Hill
  • Regional Food and Beverage Producer of the Year: Atlas Brew Works
  • Formal Fine Dining Restaurant of the Year: Three Blacksmiths
  • New Restaurant of the Year: Cane
  • Upscale Casual Restaurant of the Year: Poca Madre
  • Pastry Chef of the Year: Paola Velez, Kith/Kin (now Maydan and Compass Rose)
  • Rising Culinary Star of the Year: Angel Barreto, Anju
  • Restaurateur of the Year: Yama Jewayni, Katsuya Fukushima, Daisuke Utagawa, Daikaya Group
  • Employee of the Year: Yasmin Orozco, Taco Bamba Taqueria — Springfield
  • Manager of the Year: Jamal Flowers, Rocklands Barbeque and Grilling Co. — Alexandria
  • Chef of the Year: David Deshaies, Unconventional Diner

Special awards honoring exemplary commitment and milestones were also given out:

  • Joan Hisaoka Allied Member of the Year: Coastal Sunbelt Produce
  • Duke Zeibert Capital Achievement Award: Randy Norton of Great American Restaurants
  • 2020 Honorary Milestone RAMMY Award: ROCKLANDS Barbeque and Grilling Co. (celebrating 30 years), Vace Italian Delicatesson (40 years) and Mrs. K’s Toll House (90 years)

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