Gen. Mills, Zimmern Give Food Awards; No MN Cos. Win

Gen. Mills, Zimmern Give Food Awards; No MN Cos. Win

Several local companies—including Summit Brewing, Salty Tart, and Andrew Zimmern’s own AZ Canteen—were nominated for awards, which recognized the nation’s best in 20 food-related categories.

Golden Valley-based General Mills, Inc., and locally based food celebrity Andrew Zimmern on Wednesday announced the winners of a jointly launched awards program meant to recognize the nation’s best in a variety of food-related categories—and while a few local companies were nominated, none received awards.
 
“The Munchies: People’s Choice” awards program recognized food industry tastemakers across 20 categories including best chef, food truck, reality show, and magazine, among others.
 
Zimmern and General Mills worked with a panel of 26 food industry leaders to create a list of nominees and then asked members of the public to vote on their favorite food destinations, publications, and professionals. (Among the 26 panelists involved in the nomination process were Twin Cities Business Executive Editor Adam Platt and Dara Moskowitz Grumdahl of TCB’s sister publication Mpls.St.Paul.)
 
Local companies that were nominated included St. Paul-based Summit Brewing Company, nominated for “best craft brewery”; Minneapolis-based Salty Tart, up for “best bakery”; and Zimmern’s food truck AZ Canteen, which debuted at last year’s Minnesota State Fair and whose cuisine was recently added to the Target Field menu.
 
Award recipients include the city of Chicago, which won the “best food city” award, Columbus, Ohio’s North Market, which won the award for “best local farmers market,” and Hugh Acheson, who won the “best chef” award for his Atlanta restaurant, Empire State South. Click here for the full list of award winners.
 
“It’s been exciting to ignite a passionate food debate and encourage people to support their favorite restaurants, media, and chefs by voting,” Zimmern said in a statement. “These awards are a celebration of the food experience across America, and I congratulate each of the winners.”
 
In addition to “The Munchies” winners receiving physical awards, a donation to hunger-relief charity Feeding America was made on behalf of the panelists and participating voters.
 
Andrew Zimmern co-announced “The Munchies” award winners after recently receiving an award himself. The host of the Travel Channel’s Bizarre Foods won a James Beard Foundation award for “outstanding personality/host.

 To learn more about Zimmern and how he is morphing his hit cable TV show into a diversified, branded network of businesses, read Twin Cities Business’ February cover story here.
 
General Mills is among Minnesota’s 10-largest public companies based on revenue, which totaled $16.7 billion for the fiscal year that ended in May 2012. The food manufacturing giant oversees several brands, including Pillsbury and Betty Crocker.