The America Classics Award winners for the 2012 James Beard Awards. The James Beard Award honors outstanding names in the food and beverage industry. The not-for-profit James Beard Foundation was named after "the father of American cuisine." CNN images
Hugh Acheson's cookbook "A New Turn in the South: Southern Flavors Reinvented for Your Kitchen" won the James Beard Foundation Book Award in the American Cooking category for 2012. He is the chef/partner of Five & Ten and The National in Athens, Georgia and Empire State South in Atlanta, Georgia as well as a judge on the current season on Top Chef.
Bill Smith has been the chef at Crook's Corner, a restaurant in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, for nearly two decades. In 2011, Crook's Corner was honored with The James Beard Foundation's America's Classic Award - a distinction for locally owned restaurants "beloved in their regions for quality food that reflects the character of their community," according to the Foundation.
Daniel Humm of Eleven Madison Park (right) was awarded the James Beard Foundation Outstanding Chef Award in 2012. Next to him, from left, are chefs John Besh of Restaurant August, Dan Kluger of ABC Kitchen and Karen DeMasco of Locanda Verde. Neilson Barnard/Getty Images for Mercedes-Benz
Christina Tosi was awarded the 2012 James Beard Foundation Rising Star Award. She is posing with Nils Noren during the French Culinary Institute's Outstanding Alumni Awards at French Culinary Institute on November 29, 2010 in New York City. Donald Bowers/Getty Images for The French Culinary Institute
Chris Hastings is the executive chef of Hot & Hot Fish Club in Birmingham, Alabama. He was awarded the James Beard Foundation Award for the Best Chef of the South in 2012. Jason Wallis