Hundreds of the Washington, DC Metropolitan Area’s top restaurateurs, chefs and key restaurant industry players gathered tonight as the Restaurant Association Metropolitan Washington (RAMW) announced the nominees for its annual RAMMY Awards. This evening’s Nominations Party, hosted at The Hamilton’s Hamilton LIVE in Washington, DC, and emceed by Kelly Collis and Tommy McFLY of 94.7 FRESH FM, is a highly anticipated yearly event, second only to the Restaurant Awards Gala, The RAMMYS, to be held on June 23, 2013 at the Marriott Wardman Park Hotel.
“We’re pleased to be able to honor the individuals who work hard to provide area residents and visitors with exceptional, world-class hospitality,” said Kathy Hollinger, RAMW’s new President. “Their dedication to the world and work of food and beverage adds an incredible vitality to the entire Washington Metropolitan Area. This year’s theme – ‘Restaurants in Bloom’ – acknowledges their creative contributions to the region’s burgeoning restaurant scene, and credits their talent which has earned DC recognition as a dining destination.”
The RAMMY Awards recognize excellence in 16 categories, including “Casual Dining”, “Chef of the Year”, “New Restaurant of the Year” and “Beverage/ Mixology Program of the Year”. Selecting the RAMMY nominees, and ultimately the winners, involves two separate panels of judges, the voting public and, for just one award – the Joan Hisaoka Associate Member of the Year – the RAMW Executive Committee. Any RAMW member is eligible for nomination as long as they meet the qualifications of any given category. The nominees are then reviewed by the appropriate anonymous panel of judges comprised of food/restaurant writers, educators and HR professionals who ultimately select the five finalists in each of the categories announced tonight.
The public will decide the winners in three categories: Neighborhood Gathering Place, Hottest Restaurant Bar Scene and Power Spot of the Year. The winners in these categories are determined entirely by the public vote tallies. Votes can be cast on the Washington City Paper and finalists’ websites or at ramw.org from April 4-18.