What Is Food Nerd Approved?

Details and discussion about the FNA program
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Skillet Doux
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Food Nerd Approved is a celebration of local food that has captured the love and admiration of the PHXfoodnerds community. Once a year, the members of PHXfoodnerds.com will gather to nominate restaurants and other food-related establishments based on the deliciousness of their offerings, their exceptional character, and the extent to which they've generated excitement and discussion on the board. Though it is a given that all Food Nerd Approved establishments create or are involved in the creation of excellent food, Food Nerd Approved differs from a typical "Best Of..." designation in that it is not simply an an empirical measure of excellence, but rather it denotes on a very personal level the places that have captured the adoration of this community of Phoenix-based food enthusiasts. Members of the PHXfoodnerds community submit the nominees, they are all active participants in the selection process, and determination of the final list is based solely on the words they have contributed to the board. Through Food Nerd Approved, we hope to help worthy establishments gain wider recognition, and strengthen the sense of community and exchange of knowledge among those who are passionate about Phoenix's culinary scene.

Each registered member of PHXfoodnerds.com may make up to two nominations per nomination period -- one for a new addition to the list, and one to renew the inclusion of a previous honoree. For details on eligibility and guidelines for making a nomination, please refer to the following topic:

So You Want To Nominate A Restaurant...

The nomination period will remain open for two weeks. After the two week nomination period, nominations will close but discussion will continue for another week, so that the community will have a chance to discuss any nominees that may have been made close to the deadline. During the nomination and discussion periods, members of PHXfoodnerds are encouraged to post in the nomination threads, expressing their support (or lack thereof) for the nominees. Please note, though the nomination threads are the best place to talk about whether or not you believe a restaurant should be Food Nerd Approved, regular discussion is best placed in the Valley Eats forum as usual, where it will be more easily found and may continue to be a resource for members and visitors after the FNA period has ended for the year. Also, even if you have not visited some of the nominees, you are not only welcome but encouraged to do so before the end of the discussion period, so that your thoughts may also be taken into account.

Once the nomination and discussion periods have ended, the list of nominees will be turned over to a panel of members. This panel is tasked with deciding which nominees will be Food Nerd Approved, based not on their personal preferences, but on the thoughts and opinions shared by the community over the previous year, and the support shown during the nomination and discussion period. Though a strong showing of support during the nomination period is an important factor, the primary resource the panel will consider is the regular discussion over the course of the previous year. After review, if a restaurant has, in the opinion of the panel, captured the love and admiration of the PHXfoodnerds community, it will be considered Food Nerd Approved for 2015, and a list of the 2015 FNAs will be posted on the board.

This year's FNA panel includes Skillet Doux (Dominic Armato), azhotdish (Joel LaTondress), Lunchbox (Zach Garcia), ScottofStrand (Scott Levy), and BarbaraToombs (uh... Barbara Toombs).

The pertinent dates are as follows:

Nomination Period Opens: Monday, May 4th
Last Day to Submit Nominations: Sunday, May 17th
Nominations Close, Discussion Period Begins: Monday, May 18th
Last Day to Discuss Nominees: Sunday, May 24th
Discussion Period Ends, FNA Panel Begins Deliberations: Monday, May 25th
Food Nerd Approved 2014 List Announced: Monday, June 1st
Dominic Armato
Dining Critic
Arizona Republic | azcentral.com
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