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Civic Opera House

Beard Awards: Catch a glimpse of the celebration

Beard Awards: Catch a glimpse of the celebration

They keep calling it the Oscars of the culinary world, and indeed, the James Beard Awards gala this weekend borrows touchstones of glamour, a setting at the Lyric Opera's majestic Civic Opera House, gown- and black tie-clad nominees and even a long red carpet. But it will be chefs strolling past flashing cameras and into the ceremony, not movie stars. And they will be vying for an award stamped with the image of a different bald guy, this one real: the late James Beard, lauded as the dean of American cooking. As with the Oscars, the public mostly will be shut out of the sold-out main event. But the celebration around what could be seen as an anointing of Chicago as a major player in...