Gerry Hayden in Contention for Best Northeast Chef

Gerry Hayden, the co-owner of North Fork Table & Inn in Southold, is a semifinalist for best chef in the Northeast division of the James Beard Foundation 2014 awards.

The foundation announced the semifinalists Wednesday in Orlando. The names were picked based on an open call that started back in October 2013. Now voting will begin among past winners, restaurant and chef award committee members, and other regional panelists. The five semifinalists with the most votes will be named the nominees during an announcement in Chicago March 18. Then the awards will be held in New York City on May 2 and 5.

Hayden is a Setauket native who studied at Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park and had an externship at The River Cafe. He was mentored by Charlie Palmer and served under him as the founding sous chef of Palmer’s Aureole. He later worked in San Francisco before returning to the East Coast to oversee the kitchen at the then new East Hampton Point. His resume also includes Marguery Grill, which won the Best New Restaurant award from Esquire magazine, and he returned to Aureole as its executive chef in 1999. Hayden set out on his own in 2002 and opened Amuse in New York City. His wife, co-owner and pastry chef Claudia Fleming urged him to move to the East End, where they opened North Fork Table & Inn.

North Fork Table & Inn is the number one Zagat-rated restaurant on Long Island.

Hayden received the inaugural Two Forks Outstanding Achievement Award in 2012 at Dan’s Taste of Two Forks.

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