About The Charlie Awards Show
The second annual Charlie Awards event celebrated the Twin Cities restaurant, food and drink industry. The centerpiece of the celebration was the main show on Sunday, November 11. Held at the Pantages Theatre in downtown Minneapolis, the award show was packed with live entertainment featuring Mick Sterling, Erin Schwab, Jay Fuchs and his band Better Bones, Chef Jonathan Locke and emcee Brian “B.T.” Turner from Cities 97. Preceding the show was a brunch sponsored by Mpls.St. Paul Magazine beginning at the Brave New Workshop. There was also an after-party sponsored by Minnesota Monthly in the IDS Center Crystal Court.
Tickets for the CHARLIE AWARDS were available online at www.charliesexceptionale.com; at the box offices of the State, Orpheum and Pantages theatres; or at any Ticketmaster outlet.
Tickets for the main show and after-party were $35 ($25 for members of the food community).
Tickets for all three events, including the VIP brunch, were $100, with a portion of the proceeds
benefitting Open Arms of Minnesota, the only nonprofit organization in Minnesota that cooks and
delivers free meals specifically tailored to meet the nutrition needs of individuals living with life-threatening illnesses. The VIP brunch was catered by culinary schools list below and feature a special breakfast cocktail from 2 Gingers and Joia. Also, VIP Brunch ticket holders received premium seating and a VIP swag bag.
About The Charlie Awards
The Charlie Awards recognizes the exceptional contributions of the Twin Cities metro area food and restaurant industry, including:
• Corporations and businesses (e.g. food suppliers, vendors, retailers, wholesalers)
• Institutions (e.g. hospitals and schools)
• Beverage manufacturers and suppliers (e.g. breweries, wineries, distillers, coffee, beer and wine crafters)
• Culinary schools
• Restaurant staff (e.g. wait staff, bartenders, maitre de, pastry chef)
• Food Trucks
• Coffee Shops
The awards consisted of two components – individuals and businesses honored by their peers and outstanding food recognized by the public and industry leaders. Awards for individuals and businesses were determined by a vote of all restaurants participating in the Charlie Awards. Each restaurant participating had one vote in the following categories, with the individual/business having the most votes in each category receiving recognition:
Outstanding Emerging Chef (a professional working for less than five years)
Outstanding Restaurant Item
Outstanding Food Truck Item
Outstanding Interior Design
Outstanding Pastry Chef
Outstanding Local Craft Brew
Outstanding Cup of Coffee
Food receiving recognition was determined by both the public and a panel of experts. Any non-
franchised restaurant or food truck was eligible to enter one food item they believed was representative of their establishment. The food items were grouped in the following neighborhoods:
Northeast Minneapolis/North Metro
South Minneapolis/South Metro
St. Paul/East Metro
Twin Cities West Metro
Any member of the general public was invited and encouraged to vote online for their favorite food item. The two food items in each neighborhood receiving the highest number of votes became nominees.
A panel composed of local multi-industry professionals evaluated each submitted item, and then selected one food item in each neighborhood to be recognized at the Charlie Awards.
The panel consisted of professionals from the following industries:
Culinary Arts Schools
Wholesale Food Producers
Institutions (i.e. Hospitals, Corporations, Schools)
Public Members (i.e. Enter to Win contests, etc)
Sponsors for the Charlie Awards are: General Mills, HealthPartners, Radisson Hotels, Walser Automotive, U.S. Foods, Open Arms, 2 GINGERSIrish Whiskey, Chameleon Concessions, Palm Brothers, JOIA Soda, Ispíri Design-Build, Kohler, OpenTable, Horizon Food Service Equipment, G&K Services, Thousand Hills Cattle Company, Peterson Farms, the Minnesota Beef Council, the Minnesota Restaurant Association, Minnesota Monthly, Mpls.St. Paul Magazine, Cities 97, and Minneapolis2Night.
Partners of the Charlie Awards include: Twin Cities Food Finds, Food Service News and Edible Twin Cities.
History of The Charlie Awards
The awards are named after the legendary restaurant, Charlie’s Café Exceptionale, which was a mainstay in downtown Minneapolis until the 1980s. The Charlie Awards were created to recognize the organizations, businesses and individuals that comprise that our metro area food and restaurant industry to ensure a diverse, vibrant and creative lifestyle and economy. The Charlies were the inspiration of Minnesota’s own culinary expert and James Beard award-winning food journalist, Sue Zelickson.