» Advanced hype: We’re still a few months away from the 2008 James Beard Awards, which means there’s plenty of time to feast on memorable cuisine from the nominees. The only suburban nods went to Alison Barshak (Alison at Blue Bell), nominated for Best Chef, Mid-Atlantic, and Chip Roman (Blackfish), nominated for Rising Star Chef of the Year. Also nominated for Best Chef, Mid-Atlantic: Jim Burke (James), Jose Garces (Amada), Matthew Levin (Lacroix) and Daniel Stern (Rae). Other Rising Chef nominations went to Jeff Michaud (Osteria) and Michael Solomonov (Marigold Kitchen). (Note: Solomonov is no longer working the line at Marigold now that he’s swept up in his new project, the forthcoming Zahav.) Apparently, Center City’s rolling boil of a love affair with Marc Vetri has spread to the Big Apple (home of the James Beard Foundation). He’s been nominated for Outstanding Chef, and his namesake restaurant for Outstanding Service. Best New Restaurant nominees are Osteria, Tinto and Xochitl. The Restaurateur of the Year nomination went to (big surprise) Stephen Starr. The James Beard Awards ceremony is slated for the first weekend in June.