The Magnolia Blossom Festival World Championship Steak Cook-off has been named by the Arkansas Food Hall of Fame as one of three finalists for “Food-Themed Event.”

Finalists for the 2022 class of the Arkansas Food Hall of Fame were announced Monday by Arkansas Heritage.

The Arkansas Food Hall of Fame program in 2016 to recognize Arkansas’s legendary restaurants, proprietors and food-themed events across the state.

More than 2,000 submissions were received from all 75 Arkansas counties for the sixth class of the Arkansas Food Hall of Fame. Arkansans rallied around their favorites by nominating during the month of October in the following five categories:

Arkansas Food Hall of Fame

Proprietor of the Year

Food-Themed Event

People’s Choice

Gone But Not Forgotten

Joining the Magnolia steak cook-off as finalists are the Mount Nebo Chicken Fry (Yell County), and the World Championship Duck Gumbo Cookoff (Arkansas County). The Magnolia festival has been named a finalist in two prior years but has not yet won the award.

Finalists in other categories include:

Arkansas Food Hall of Fame

Colonial Steak House of Pine Bluff (Jefferson County)

Dairy King of Portia (Lawrence County)

Dixie Pig of Blytheville (Mississippi County)

Herman’s Ribhouse of Fayetteville (Washington County)

K Hall & Sons Produce of Little Rock (Pulaski County)

Kream Kastle of Blytheville (Mississippi County)

Neal’s Café of Springdale (Washington County)

Ohio Club of Hot Springs (Garland County)

The Faded Rose of Little Rock (Pulaski County)

Bulldog Restaurant of Bald Knob (White County)

Lindsey's Bar-B-Q & Hospitality House of North Little Rock (Pulaski County)

Bailey's Dairy Treat of Hot Springs (Garland County)

Stoby's Restaurant Conway (Faulkner County)

Bruno's Little Italy of Little Rock (Pulaski County)

Daisy Queen of Marshall (Searcy County)

Proprietor of the Year

Jim Keet, JTJ Restaurants of Little Rock (Pulaski County)

Jamie McAfee, Pine Bluff Country Club of Pine Bluff (Jefferson County)

Rob Nelson, Tusk and Trotter of Bentonville (Benton County)

Capi Peck, Trio’s Restaurant of Little Rock (Pulaski County)

David Stobaugh, Stoby’s Restaurant of Conway (Faulkner County)

James Woods, Woods Place of Camden (Ouachita County)

Gone But Not Forgotten

Coy’s Steak House (Garland County)

Cajun’s Wharf (Pulaski County)

Mrs. Miller’s Chicken & Steak House (Garland County)

The Villa Italian Restaurant (Pulaski County)

James At The Mill (Washington County)

The People’s Choice Award has been chosen solely based on the number of nominations for a particular restaurant and the winner will be announced during the induction ceremony.

“Food is a popular topic that elicits strong opinions,” said Stacy Hurst, secretary of the Arkansas Department of Parks, Heritage and Tourism. “We have a noteworthy food heritage and culture in Arkansas and we are pleased to recognize these standouts through our highly regarded Food Hall of Fame program.”

CLICK HERE for all nominees and finalists.

Winners will be announced at a hybrid ceremony at Central Arkansas Library System’s Ron Robinson Theater on Monday, February 7. The venue is located at 100 River Market Ave. in downtown Little Rock.

The public is invited to attend the reception and induction ceremony virtually or in-person. Tickets are $20.

CLICK HERE to buy tickets.

Winners will be selected by a committee of Arkansans who are historians, chefs, foodies and food authors. In addition to Hurst, committee members include Paul S. Austin, Jimmy Bryant, Chip Culpepper, Quantia “Key” Fletcher, Cindy Grisham, Montine McNulty, Rex Nelson, Tim Nutt, Kat Robinson, Stephanie Wade, David Ware and Stanley Young.

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