The Munchies: People’s Choice Food Awards

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Panel of Celebrity Tastemakers Give the Public Mouth-Watering Nominees to Chomp On

MINNEAPOLIS – April 2, 2012You came, you ate, and now it’s time to vote! General Mills’ is honoring 20 categories of the most delicious food experiences America has to offer – from the most iconic burger, to the best local farmers market, to the best chef – by calling on the public to award the most deserving with the first ever The Munchies: People’s Choice Food Awards. Online voting launches today at, running through April 30th.

The Munchies will give food lovers a voice in celebrating the restaurants, chefs, media and food that deliver the most inspiring and satisfying culinary experiences. Plus, we’ll be making a donation to Feeding America on behalf of all of the voters and panelists, so everyone who participates is also supporting a great cause,” said Heather Reid, Food Content Marketing at General Mills. “Every day, passionate food lovers visit to discover and share the freshest, most amazing ideas from the world of food and drink, so it’s the perfect place to host The Munchies.  We are excited to highlight the culinary tastemakers who are shaping America’s food culture.

How do you even begin to distill the big, juicy world of food experiences down to a handful of nominees per category? You enlist a pro with his own cred in the kitchen – and that’s just what General Mills did by bringing on James Beard award-winning television personality and chef Andrew Zimmern to head up a wide-ranging panel of celebrity chowhounds to develop the short list of nominees.

Food is such a passion point for so many of us in this country, and I love being involved in anything that really gets people talking about the best of what’s out there,” said The Munchies lead panelist Andrew Zimmern. “The Munchies are an opportunity to spark a national conversation about food and give the public a chance to vote on their favorites.

In addition to Zimmern, the panel includes:

These gastronomy gurus shared their culinary perspectives to determine The Munchies nominees across three groups of categories:

  • Terrific Tastemakers gives props to the media and personalities that make the food world sizzle, from the Favorite Food TV Personality to the Favorite Food Blog.
  • Best Bites honors the most delectable interpretations of our favorite foods, like Most Iconic Burger and Best Cookie.
  • Delicious Destinations pays homage to the establishments that keep us coming back for more; think Coolest Coffee Shop or Most Intriguing Cocktail Bar.

Food enthusiasts can satisfy their cravings to vote once per day at during the voting period (April 2-30). The 2012 winners of The Munchies awards will be based on popular vote and announced on in early May.


The full list of nominees is:

Terrific Tastemakers

  • Favorite Food Reality TV Show

o   “Chopped” (Food Network)

o   “Cupcake Wars” (Food Network)

o   “Iron Chef America” (Food Network)

o   “The Great Food Truck Race” (Food Network)

o   “Top Chef” (Bravo)

  • Favorite Food TV Personality

o   Andrew Zimmern, “Bizarre Foods” (Travel Channel)

o   Bobby Flay, “Food Network Star” (Food Network)

o   Mario Batali, “The Chew” (ABC)

o   Padma Lakshmi, “Top Chef” (Bravo)

o   Tom Colicchio, “Top Chef” (Bravo)

  • Favorite Food Related Magazine

o   Bon Appétit


o   Food Network Magazine

o   Lucky Peach

o   Saveur

  • Favorite Food Blog

o   101 Cookbooks, Heidi Swanson

o   David Lebovitz, David Lebovitz

o   Homesick Texan, Lisa Fain

o   Poor Man’s Feast, Elissa Altman

o   The Pioneer Woman, Ree Drummond

  • Most Newsworthy Cookbook

o   Food52 Cookbook, Amanda Hesser & Merrill Stubbs

o   Heart of the Artichoke and Other Kitchen Journeys, David Tanis

o   Primal Cuts, Marissa Guggiana

o   Ruhlman’s Twenty, Michael Ruhlman

o   The Art of Living According to Joe Beef, David McMillan, Fredric Morin & Meredith Erickson

  • Best Food Podcast or Radio Show

o   “Edible Radio”

o   “Good Food” (KCRW)

o   “Mike & Tom Eat Snacks!” (Nerdist)

o   “NPR: Food” (NPR)

o   “The Splendid Table” (American Public Media)

  • Best Chef

o   April Bloomfield, The Spotted Pig, New York, NY

o   Daniel Boulud, Daniel NYC, New York, NY

o   David Chang, Momofuku, New York, NY

o   Eric Ripert, Le Bernardin, New York, NY

o   Thomas Keller, The French Laundry, Yountville, CA

  • Most Inspiring Food Visionary

o   Alice Waters, The Edible Schoolyard Project

o   Dan Barber, Blue Hill Farm

o   Jamie Oliver, Food Revolution

o   Michelle Obama, Let’s Move

o   Will Allen, Growing Power


Best Bites

  • Most Iconic Burger

o   Cheeseburger, Burger Joint at Le Parker Meridien, New York, NY

o   Double Double Animal Style, In-N-Out Burger, Irvine, CA

o   Double Shackburger, Shake Shack, New York, NY

o   Green Chile Cheeseburger, Bobcat Bite, Santa Fe, NM

o   Jucy Lucy, Matt’s Bar, Minneapolis, MN

  • Best Pizza

o   Frank Pepe Pizzeria, New Haven, CT

o   Giordano’s, Chicago, IL

o   Grimaldi’s Pizzeria, Brooklyn, NY

o   Pizzeria Bianco, Phoenix, AZ

o   Pizzeria Mozza, Los Angeles, CA

  • Best Taco

o   Big Star, Chicago, IL

o   Kogi BBQ Truck, Los Angeles, CA

o   La Condesa, Austin, TX

o   Loteria Grill, Los Angeles, CA

o   Torchy’s Tacos, Austin, TX

  • Best Cookie

o   Chocolate Sable, Miette, San Francisco, CA

o   Coconut Macaroon, Salty Tart Bakery, Minneapolis, MN

o   Compost Cookie®, Momofuku Milk Bar, New York, NY

o   Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Chip Cookie, Levain Bakery, New York, NY

o   Macaroons, Kee’s Chocolates, New York, NY

  • Best Ice Cream

o   Amy’s Ice Creams, Austin, TX

o   Bi-Rite Creamery, San Francisco, CA

o   Humphry Slocombe, San Francisco, CA

o   Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams, Columbus, OH

o   Thomas Sweet, Princeton, NJ

  • Best Food Truck

o   Big Gay Ice Cream, New York, NY

o   Kogi BBQ Truck, Los Angeles, CA

o   Odd Duck Farm to Trailer, Austin, TX

o   Rickshaw Dumpling Truck, New York, NY

o   Wafels & Dinges, New York, NY


Delicious Destinations

  • Best Local Farmers Market

o   Ferry Plaza Farmers Market, San Francisco, CA

o   Pike Place Market, Seattle, WA

o   Portland Farmers Market, Portland, OR

o   Santa Monica Farmers Market, Santa Monica, CA

o   Union Square Greenmarket, New York, NY

  • Favorite Stadium Eats

o   Crazy Crab’z Dungeness Crab Sandwich, AT&T Park, San Francisco, CA

o   Ivar Dog, Safeco Field, Seattle, WA

o   Shack-Cago Dog, Citi Field, New York, NY

o   Sweet Victory Peach Cobbler, Georgia Dome, Atlanta, GA

o   Tony Luke’s Cheesesteak, Citizen’s Bank Park, Philadelphia, PA

  • Coolest Coffee Shop

o   Café Grumpy, New York, NY

o   Intelligentsia Coffee, Chicago, IL

o   Joe, New York, NY

o   Peet’s Coffee & Tea, Berkeley, CA

o   Stumptown Coffee Roasters, Portland, OR

  • Best Craft Brewery

o   Brooklyn Brewery, Brooklyn, NY

o   Dogfish Head Craft Brewery, Milton, DE

o   Rogue Ales, Newport, OR

o   Sixpoint Craft Ales, Brooklyn, NY

o   Summit Brewing Co., St. Paul, MN

  • Most Intriguing Cocktail Bar

o   La Belle Vie, Minneapolis, MN

o   Monkey Bar, New York, NY

o   Prime Meats, Brooklyn, NY

o   The Aviary, Chicago, IL

o   The Violet Hour, Chicago, IL

  • Favorite Gluten-Free Bakery

o   BabyCakes NYC, New York, NY

o   Bittersweet Bakery, Eagan, MN

o   Defloured, Chicago, IL

o   Mariposa Baking, Oakland, CA

o   Tu-Lu’s Gluten-Free Bakery, New York, NY








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