The Restaurant at Gideon Ridge in Blowing Rock, North Carolina is a 2024 James Beard Award Semifinalist in the Outstanding Restaurant category. Semifinalists are recognized as exemplary in their category; the top 5 in each award category will be announced as Nominees this spring. 

According to the James Beard Foundation’s website, the Outstanding Restaurant Award recognizes restaurants that “demonstrate consistent excellence in food, atmosphere, hospitality, and operations while contributing positively to their broader community.”

The Restaurant at Gideon Ridge has been a fine dining staple in Blowing Rock for many years. It has become known for thoughtfully crafted, locally-sourced fare and attentive service. Wide mountain views surround the intimate dining area. The restaurant is housed inside a rustically elegant inn, built in 1941 as a summer estate by the Lindau family, relatives of Moses and Bertha Cone. The Milner family purchased the establishment in 1984 and in 2000, Cobb and Cindy Milner opened The Restaurant at Gideon Ridge.

 “This honor is the result of many years of effort by our wonderful staff, from the kitchen, to the servers, cleaning staff and managers who made this all possible,” Cobb Milner said. “And especially our Executive Chef, Hunter Womble.”

Womble became the Executive Chef at The Restaurant at Gideon Ridge in 2014. As he has applied his creativity and vision, the restaurant’s reputation for exceptional experiences has grown. He is excited about this latest recognition for the restaurant. “There are so many incredible chefs and restaurants represented in these categories,” Womble said. “Just to be considered for this distinction really is an honor. We appreciate the show of confidence, as well as the consistent support from our local community over the years.”

Community connection is especially valued by the team at The Restaurant at Gideon Ridge. “We couldn’t have reached such success without our local community including our farmers, suppliers, friends, and families who have given their time and expertise to helping our business shine,” Cindy Milner added. “Families have been with us for decades and shared their generations. We are ever grateful and humbled by that support.”

The Restaurant at Gideon Ridge has been recognized with multiple accolades in the last several years. Just a few months ago, the Restaurant at Gideon Ridge received Tripadvisor’s Travelers’ Choice Best of the Best Award for the second year in a row. The online travel review giant ranked The Restaurant at Gideon Ridge as #2 Fine Dining Restaurant and #3 Date Night Restaurant in the United States, based on quality and quantity of traveler reviews and ratings. The restaurant is also currently recognized by Fodor’s Travel as a Fodor’s Choice selection.  

The 2024 James Beard Award Restaurant and Chef semifinalists are recognized across 22 categories. North Carolina’s rich culinary culture is well represented in the lists. Eleven other North Carolina restaurants and chefs join The Restaurant at Gideon Ridge as semifinalists across several categories. Nominees will be announced on Wednesday, April 3, and winners will be announced at the James Beard Restaurant and Chef Awards Ceremony on Monday, June 10. The 2024 James Beard Awards are presented by Capital One.

Learn more about the James Beard Awards and see the full Semifinalist lists at jamesbeard.org.

Get information and reservations for The Restaurant at Gideon Ridge at gideonridge.com.

January 2024