Earlier this week the Southern California Restaurant Writers conducted its 42nd annual Awards Banquet to honor the region's best restaurants and single out individuals for special recognition.
The event took place at the Center Club in Costa Mesa and included a wine tasting featuring wines from Thornton Winery, Jackson Family Wines, Pedroncelli and Young's Market along with appetizers.
The dinner included a local Farmers Market Vegetable salad, rosemary sea salt crusted rack of spring lamb, a dessert of chocolate ginger cake with sorbet and Mignardises.
Individual awards included Anun Puri, Royal Khyber, Santa Ana as Restaurateur of the Year; Ed Inglese, Tutti Mangia, Clairmont, Owner-Entrepreneur of the Year; John Tallichet, Specialty Restaurants, Humanitarian of the Year; and Nadine Pineda, Pacific Dining Car, Santa Monica as Manager of the Year.
Named Chef of the Year was Henry Gonzalez, Spaggi's, Upland and Sara Guccione, Tustin Ranch Gold Club as Sous Chef of the Year.
Other restaurateurs attending received five star, four star and three star awards as being among the best dining houses in Southern California.
Proceeds from the dinner are for the Doris Crandall Scholarship Fund which annually provides scholarships to students attending community college culinary art courses.