Some older names and one newcomer are part of this year's field of nominees for the James Beard Foundation's awards.

The awards are regarded as the Oscars of the food world, with categories spanning restaurants, cookbooks and journalism. This represents a winnowing of the list of semifinalists released in February.

Philadelphians have three of the five nominations for best chef, mid-Atlantic: Joe Cicala (Le Virtù, Brigantessa), Rich Landau (Vedge, V Street) and Greg Vernick (Vernick Food & Drink).

Marc Vetri, who with business partner Jeff Benjamin has built a small empire since 1998 (Vetri, 2 Osterias, Amis, Alla Spina, Lo Spiedo, Pizzeria Vetri ), is up for chef of the year.

Stephen Starr, who owns restaurants in Philadelphia, New York, Atlantic City, Washington, D.C., Miami and Fort Lauderdale, is up for restaurateur of the year.

Alex Bois, 28, the wunderkind behind the baked goods at High Street on Market and Fork, is a nominee for rising star chef of the year - appropriate for a baker.

The Inquirer's Craig LaBan is a nominee in the restaurant-review category for his reviews of Abe Fisher, Mole Poblano, and Volvér. This is LaBan's fourth nomination; he won the award in 2000.

Sam Calagione of Dogfish Head in Milton, Del., is up for wine, beer or spirits professional.

The media awards ceremony is April 24. The restaurant awards will be May 4.