Executive chef Matthew McClure of The Hive has been named a semifinalist for the 2018 James Beard Foundation Restaurant and Chef Awards in the Best Chef: South category for the 5th year in a row.

Established in 1990, and often referred to as the “Academy Awards of food,” the James Beard Foundation Restaurant and Chef Awards recognize culinary professionals for achievement in their respective fields. The final list of nominees for all award categories will be announced on Wednesday, March 14, during a press conference in Philadelphia. Nominations will be streamed live and announced in real time on Twitter.

“The James Beard Foundation should be applauded for their efforts to improve our food system. I am honored to be considered for this coveted award for the fifth year in a row and bring well-deserved recognition to the cuisine of my home state. It is a testament to the hard work and values of the team at The Hive. An affiliation with this organization that is working to better our world for everyone is an important part of my personal goals as well as the goals I have for the Hive,” said McClure.

At The Hive, McClure showcases the refined, country cuisine of the High South, focusing on the ingredients of Northwest Arkansas and the region’s traditional methods of cooking. McClure was a James Beard Award semi-finalist for the “Best Chef: South” award in 2014, 2015, 2016 and 2017, and was a speaker at the 2016 James Beard Foundation Conference: Now Trending: The Making of a Food Movement. McClure was awarded Food & Wine magazine’s “The People’s Best New Chef” award for the Midwest in 2015. He is also an active member of the Southern Foodways Alliance and supporter of No Kid Hungry.