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The Oscars for Food Shows? Netflix, Hulu, Peacock Vie for 'James Beard' Awards

Hulu's 'Taste the Nation'
Hulu's 'Taste the Nation' (Image credit: Hulu)

Awards have proven to be a key asset in the quest for subscription video-on-demand services to achieve mainstream, mass-audience acceptance for their original shows. 

And as it turns out, Oscars and Emmys haven't been the only coveted prizes. 

On Saturday, on the campus of Columbia College Chicago, Netflix, Hulu, Peacock and several other streaming companies will compete for coveted James Beard Foundation Media Awards. 

These Media Awards, hosted by Lisa Ling, journalist star of HBO Max's Take Out, will precede Monday's 31s Annual James Beard Restaurant and Chef Awards, presented  at the Lyric Opera of Chicago, sponsored by Capital One, and recognizing "exceptional talent in the culinary and food media industries ..." 

You won't see it listed on the awards pages of IMDB, at least not yet, but in 2016, a Media Awards win for Season 1 of Netflix's Chef's Table put the James Beard Foundation trophy on the map for the major streaming services, and it's been a destination awards ceremony for them ever since. 

“The James Beard Awards represent the highest honor a restaurant, person, or creative project can get in the culinary world, full stop," said Jason Wise, founder and chief creative officer SommTV, whose Sparklers will compete with Netflix's School fo Chocolate and Peacock's Top Chef: Family Style in the "Reality or Competition Visual Media" category. 

"For Sparklers to be nominated in such esteemed company is a major testament to the hard work and passion this cast and crew," Wise added.  

Meanwhile, Hulu's Taste the Nation with Padma Lakshimi: Holiday Edition will be up against Netflix's Somebody Feed Phil and WABC-TV's EatUp! New York in the "Visual media - Long Form" category. 

“I’m over the moon that Taste the Nation has been recognized by the James Beard Foundation with this nomination. Our show is so aligned with the values of the Foundation that we could not hope for a more prestigious honor," Lakshimi told Next TV

Here's how the James Beard Media Awards competition breaks down this year:

Reality or Competition Visual Media

School of Chocolate (airs on Netflix)

Sparklers (airs on SommTV)

Top Chef: Family Style (airs on Peacock)

Visual Media — Long Form

EatUp! New York (Airs on ABC7 New York)

Somebody Feed Phil (Airs on Netflix)

Taste the Nation: Holiday Edition (Airs on Hulu)

Visual Media — Long Form

EatUp! New York (Airs on ABC7 New York)

Somebody Feed Phil (Airs on Netflix)

Taste the Nation: Holiday Edition (Airs on Hulu)

Daniel Frankel is the managing editor of Next TV, an internet publishing vertical focused on the business of video streaming. A Los Angeles-based writer and editor who has covered the media and technology industries for more than two decades, Daniel has worked on staff for publications including E! Online, Electronic Media, Mediaweek, Variety, paidContent and GigaOm. You can start living a healthier life with greater wealth and prosperity by following Daniel on Twitter today!