The SAVEUR Blog Awards are here, and from a pool of tens of thousands of reader nominations we've selected 78 finalists in 13 categories. Now it's your turn to vote for a winner. Cast your ballot here early and often; you can vote as many times as you like by August 31st. Today: meet the finalists for our Best New Voice award.
These blogs have only recently started, but they're already standouts. An undeniable international perspective (and a serious love for books) shows up in each one—it would be a mistake to ignore the new kids on the block.
The Blog: Every month, Let's Taco Bout It picks a book theme and creates a meal based on that novel. The post is written in the style of the original author, and the blog pages are meant to be a homage to great stories and the desire to have just a little more. Who hasn't shut an earth-shattering novel and felt they must have more? The blog's purpose is to tantalize the reader who wants a taste of their favorite novel!
The Blogger: Let's Taco Bout It was born out of passion and voraciousness for both food and literature. The team includes Mica, the phenomenal food photographer, Stephani, the fancy food stylist, and Charlotte, the rapacious writer and recipe developer. All three are obsessed with cuisine and creativity and this blog is the intersection of those passions. They read, write, cook, and photograph from their home in Austin, Texas.
The Blog: Many of the recipes on Vermilion Roots are Asian, made simple for everyone to recreate easily using local, seasonal ingredients. Given how difficult it can be to source some Southeast Asian ingredients, blogger Christine Leong is willing to let practicality replace accuracy, and believes that fusion cooking is necessary, if not inevitable, in seasonal eating. She hopes this easy approach to Asian cooking will open up new and delicious possibilities no matter where your kitchen is in the world.
The Blogger: Christine Leong is the writer and photographer behind Vermilion Roots, where she shares her experiences as a Southeast Asian eating and cooking in the San Francisco Bay Area. She loves to travel and discover cuisines of different cultures, and since moving to a new country she finds herself especially drawn to foods from the region where she grew up. Her cooking style is informed by her Oriental-Malaysian background and having grown up with a chef dad who ran a Chinese restaurant in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
The Blog: North Wild Kitchen approaches Norwegian cooking and ingredients traditionally and in new and creative ways. It's about recipes and cooking techniques which have been passed down from generations and centuries, understanding the where and how and why, and creating new dishes from that. It's also about the artisans and producers who keep these traditions alive. From fresh fish to wild berries, to baked goods and cured meats, blogger Nevada Berg strongly believes Norway has one of the most incredible offerings of good food in the world. She hopes her approach will inspire others, and show just how diverse this beautiful country is.
The Blogger: After years of traveling and living abroad, Nevada Berg and her Norwegian husband decided to head north. Originally from Utah, with family roots in Colorado, the mountains of Norway seemed calling. So they went deep in the belly of Norway, in a valley called Numedal with towering mountains and a winding river. They bought an old farm with the markings of history and expanded their family to include twelve hens and a rooster named Ging. Berg's days are filled with fresh air, chasing her little boy, visiting local producers, managing the farm and capturing these experiences through North Wild Kitchen.
The Blog: Harvest and Honey began as a result of blogger Lauren McDuffie wanting to create a shared journal of her favorite recipes – a savings account for her favorite things, essentially. But it has grown into so much more for her since she published her first post. Food and cooking have always been her greatest passions, and they stand as the primary ingredients behind the storytelling in this blog. Connecting with others through a shared interest in food and a good story is endlessly inspiring and fulfilling for her, and she hopes her readers get the same feeling in return.
The Blogger: Blogger Lauren McDuffie is a freelance food writer, children's book author and keeper of the memoir-style food blog, Harvest and Honey. Cooking and food have always been her passions and more often than not, you can find her in her kitchen, dreaming up recipes and making a mess with her kids. She and her family have moved around a lot over the past 10 years, but she currently lives in Indianapolis, IN, with her husband (Lucas), daughter (Elle), son (Easton), and two crazy cats.
The Blog: The Brick Kitchen is dedicated to the creation, enjoyment and sharing of food with others. Inspiration comes from my experiences as a student and from what I love to eat—whether that be flavors discovered at Melbourne eateries, food eaten streetside in Vietnam, or fast weeknight meals to suit families like my own. Indulgent desserts and baking feature alongside fresh, seasonal main dishes—from apple walnut tarts with miso butterscotch ice cream one week to Thai fish burgers with green mango & papaya slaw the next.
The Blogger: Blogger Claudia Brick is a medical student from Auckland currently studying and blogging in Melbourne. The Brick Kitchen started at the end of her first year of university as a way to explore her passions for both food and writing, record her favorite recipes, and as a chance to switch her mind from physiology and anatomy into something less structured and more creative, even if just for an hour at a time. When not in the kitchen or at her desk, you might find her drinking flat whites at Melbourne cafes, out for a run, or buried in a book.
The Blog: Lime & Cilantro was created with roots in two main components: stories and the Burmese kitchen. Blogging, for Soe Thein, is his sanctuary, where he feels the courage to be vulnerable, the strength to let his voice heard, and the restoration to self-reflect. When psoriasis left him with unsightly scales on his scalp, painful knees and hair-loss, blogging helped him love who he is. He want to bring that ultimate happiness: the acceptance of oneself, to his readers. Accordingly, his blog posts are dotted with almost self-deprecating humors. Lastly, he feels a strong desire to share the simple beauty of Burmese cuisines with the international community.
The Blogger: Blogger Soe Thein grew up in a household with 22 people in Yangon, a bustling former capital of Myanmar. Despite their differing opinions, and interests, one thing that they all share is their love for eating. They console, celebrate, and express their love for each other through food. Eating times are the noisiest yet most fun for everyone, and they all have jokily admitted it. After high school, Thein left the loud household for college in Atlanta, and suddenly felt deafened by the quietness, and nostalgia for Burmese food. This powerful longing was the conception that propelled him to start cooking.